Strength for Today and Bright Hope for Tomorrow

Volume 9 : 11 November 2009
ISSN 1930-2940

Managing Editor: M. S. Thirumalai, Ph.D.
Editors: B. Mallikarjun, Ph.D.
         Sam Mohanlal, Ph.D.
         B. A. Sharada, Ph.D.
         A. R. Fatihi, Ph.D.
         Lakhan Gusain, Ph.D.
         K. Karunakaran, Ph.D.
         Jennifer Marie Bayer, Ph.D.



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A Plea for the Use of Language Portals in
Imparting Communication Skills

B. J. Geetha., M.A., M.Sc., M.Phil.
R. Subramani, Ph.D.


Teachers of English as a medium of communication in India toil desperately to find suitable methodologies to facilitate the students in acquiring the communication skills. In the recent past, the number of teachers using Computer-Assisted Language Teaching has increased markedly and the role of technology in education in the 21st century is widely discussed. This paper is intended to analyze the multifaceted use of Internet as an interactive teaching medium to impart communication skills to the Indian learners and also to explore the possibilities of integrating Internet in the field of English language teaching in India. A list of useful websites is presented which could be used for various teaching, learning and testing purposes.


Advancement in computers, in digital memory, in Internet resources, in audio and visual transmission, in virtual imaging, wire and wireless communication has created new slabs for the use of technology in the teaching of English. Web publishing, digital archives, digital video, electronic conferencing, blogging, wikis, podcasting, real simple syndication feeds, on-line gaming, virtual reality worlds are the potential new tools for teaching and learning English. MySpace and Face book and other social sites also become important tools. These may be successfully used as a forum to teach English. However, technology is rather overwhelming to harness, somewhat like trying to get a drink of water from a gushing fire hydrant (Warschauer and Whittaker l995). In order to make effective use of new technologies, teachers must equip themselves with some basic e-pedagogical skills.

Merge Conventional Methodology with Internet Resources

By merging the conventional methodology with emerging technology, we can improve learning and performance. In higher education, the application of language learning portals and existing multimedia tools may be more suitable to the adult students. Instruction is now available as when students want it in the privacy of their residence or the browsing centers nearby.

It is evident that Internet is one of the most powerful tools for teachers to help students to collaborate, interact and participate actively in the learning process. We ought to make use of available resources in the Internet to improve the communicative skills of the non-native speakers. Native speakers widely use online portals for the updating in all areas of academic study. They not only concentrate on the grammar part of their language acquisition, but on expression, etymology of the language, games, alphabet games, fun cartoons, quiz, etc.

Video streaming technology helps in enhancing interactive portals through pronunciation video course materials which root out mispronunciation and improper expression and ensure perfection in the expression.

Teachers' Role Is Still Necessary!

It is still true that a teacher cannot be replaced by technology. But a teacher would always be constrained if her professional experience and training in mixing education with communication is not based on specific objectives in human e-learning concepts.

Web-based English Learning and Teaching around the World

Anyone who browses the Web immediately notices the availability of resources for English language learning and teaching. Internet is a virtual gold mine for educators. Never before have we had such inexpensive access to so many valuable resources-most of which are free. In addition to files, databases, libraries, there are many resources and projects designed for teachers and students. Broadcast outlets like BBC and CNN have their own English language portals and other business outlets do also maintain language portals.

It is more appropriate here to cite the names of a few portals of English language for better understanding and significance of Internet in imparting communicative skills of English for our students in India.

This is only the beginning part of the article. PLEASE CLICK HERE TO READ THE ARTICLE IN PRINTER-FRIENDLY VERSION.

Attitude towards Mother Tongue - A Study of the Tribal Students of Orissa | Computer-mediated Communication in a Bilingual Chatroom | Compensation Strategies for Speaking English Adopted by Engineering Students of Tamil Nadu - A Study | Acquisition of English Intransitive Verbs by Urdu Speakers | Community, Culture and Curriculum in the Context of Tribal Education in Orissa, India | Auxiliary Verbs in Modern Tamil | Getting Around 'Offensive' Language | Noun Morphology in Kuki-Chin Languages | A Plea for the Use of Language Portals in Imparting Communication Skills | Advances in Machine Translation Systems | A Comparative Study of the Effect of Explicit-inductive and Explicit-deductive Grammar Instruction in EFL Contexts | Lexical Choice and Social Context in Shashi Deshpande's That Long Silence | The Voice of Servility and Dominance Expressed through Animal Imagery in Adiga's The White Tiger | Phonological Analysis of English Phonotactics of Syllable Initial and Final Consonant Clusters by Yemeni Speakers of English | Effective Use of Language in Communicating News through Political Emergency | Helping the Limited English Proficient Learner Learn the Second Language Effectively through Strategy Instruction | P.S. Sri's The Temple Elephant: A Bestiary with Socio-Political and Spiritual Message | Papers Presented in the All-India Conference on Multimedia Enhanced Language Teaching - MELT 2009 | A Phonological Study of the Variety of English Spoken by Oriya Speakers in Western Orissa - A Doctoral Dissertation | HOME PAGE of November 2009 Issue | HOME PAGE | CONTACT EDITOR

B. J. Geetha, M.A., M.Sc., M.Phil.
Department of English
Periyar University
Salem 636 011
Tamil Nadu, India

R. Subramani, Ph.D.
Department of Journalism and Mass Communication
Periyar University
Salem 636 011
Tamil Nadu, India

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