An ESL Online Classroom Experience in Oman during COVID-19
Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) Volume 11. Number3 September 2020
14 Pages Posted: 11 Oct 2020
Date Written: September 2020
This paper aimed to investigate the online learning experience of a group of ESL students at a higher learning institution in Oman during the COVID-19. The paper studied the interaction between the students’ preferred online learning style and the technologies the students experienced on the e-learning platform (Moodle) for the particular ESL course. The rationale for investigating the relationship between the students’ learning styles and the technologies the students experienced is to evaluate if the learning style and the technologies complement each other. It is also aimed to provide an evaluation of an ESL e-learning course by considering the different technologies that can be incorporated into the e-learning classroom to meet the different learning styles. Data was gathered from 32 undergraduate students by utilizing Kolb’s Learning Styles Inventory. The study included analysis of Moodle utilizing Warburton’s Technologies in Use (2007) to develop an understanding of the technologies the students experienced online. The results of the study revealed that the majority of the students’ preferred learning style is reflected in the technologies they experienced in the online classroom. As the relationship of the technology in use and the students learning style preference in the classroom complements each other, the study revealed that the emphasis of the particular skill-based pedagogy ESL classroom is on receptive skills (listening and reading). The lack of the students’ productive skills (speaking and writing) is a cause for concern to the ESL course instructors, policymakers, and the wider community.
Keywords: ESL, Kolb Learning Styles Inventory, Oman, Online Classroom, Warburton’s Technology in Use
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