My PhD thesis in Linguistics : Abstract

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MOBILE LEARNING: Exploring cell phone potential  in teaching and learning English as a foreign language to students from public schools.

The research investigated the affordances that emerged from the interaction the students with the mobile phone and that potentiated the five language skills in the teaching and learning of English as a foreign language. Based on this main objective, the study explored the student’s perceptions of research on the learning process generated by the pedagogical activities mediated by the mobile phone. Besides that, it was investigated when it uses the cell phone in english classes and then we have attempted to know which is the best way to provide the critical and visual literacy in a way to allow the students really to be able to learn and to retain information with help of mobile devices. Finally, it was analyzed the efficacy of using the students’ mobile devices for learning of languages. the theories on which the analysis was supported were the concepts of affordance, according to Gibson’s studies (1979), Gaver (1991) and van Lier (2004), Vygotsky’s concept of Zone of Proximal Development (zpd), reinforcing the notion of social interaction and the concept of rhetorical agency, human versus technology, according to studies of Rose and Jones (2003), Miller (2009) and Cooper (2011). the participants of this study were represented by ninety-four (94) students who were studying in the 3rd year of the integrated high school in 2011. In particular, the universe of students corresponds only to the contingent represented by courses from Unidade de Ensino Decentralizada do Instituto Federal – Campus Zona Sul, in Teresina, capital of Piaui. The conclusion reached (during analysis) is that teaching with the help of the phone is fairly recent, but the experience of this research was rewarding and motivating for students and researcher. Mobile learning has helped improve language learning, it put students into a real context and made this process more attractive, interesting and motivating. students were able to maximize the acquisition of skills, linguistic competences and to optimize their time of study with mobile technology, as well as they had access to their didactic activitiesanywhere and anytime. thus, the use of cell phones in teaching and learning of languages has enabled a variety of ways of teaching and learning which it was not possible in an atmosphere of traditional or formal teaching.

Keywords: Mobile learning. Critical visual literacy.Agency. Affordance. Teaching EFL.

See the thesis in Portugues ( Federal Univeristy of Pernambuco – Recife – Brazil – 2013)

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