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Title: How do cultural expectations impact on the use of ICT for second language learning university students in Japan?
Author: Field, M. H.
Awarding Body: University of Cambridge
Current Institution: University of Cambridge
Date of Award: 2006
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There was a need to consider the use of ICT for second language learning in other cultures. In this study, Japan was chosen because it provided a rich context where cultural obligations have been demonstrated to be paramount in face-to-face interactions and questions about those expectations were investigated when using ICT in second language university classrooms. In that respect, the variables culture, ICT and language needed to be examined through a paradigm that could capture the subtle nuances of the interactions and sociological holistic methodology provided the optimal framework. During fieldwork, factors highlighted that the variable culture was a major component influencing the study at all levels. Two related, though distinct, cases were examined at two universities in Japan. The data from the first study highlighted patterns and developed a hypothesis, which was tested in the second case. The results focus primarily on the cultural factors that influence language learning and use through ICT for Japanese university students. Results suggest that ICT may be providing new ways to communicate for some; however, irrespective of the language used for communication, students attempt to use strategies rooted in the expectations of the first language culture. The degree to which students can express personal opinions and values in the ICT environment was found to be related to the perceived degree of freedom from first language cultural obligations. Some of the claimed benefits of ICT in language education were not substantiated as students were experiencing competing demands on their learning repertoire. It was also found that the degree of truth and importance students attributed to the ICT event, which was hypothesized from a matrix of cultural variables, influenced the degree to which the language used and learnt within ICT would be supported in other cultural events.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available