Adult Learning in Web-Based ESL Acquisition Programs

Subject: Education
Pages: 83
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239 min
Study level: College

Abstract

Adult Learning In Web-Based ESL Acquisition Programs find the approach a significant success. Typically, that is because the web-based applications such as Odysseyware, the wiki application, and a range of other applications provide an environment and features that support different modes to teach the adults students in ESL acquisition programs, deliver instructions to the adult student, evaluate the student, monitor student’s acquisition progress and performance, and take corrective measures interactively. Web-based applications are student focused, and addresses the motivation, the underlying reason for taking English language as a second language. Motivation plays a significant role in the attainment of goals and objectives set by the adult learner in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. Typically, the web-based applications are designed and developed to address the needs of the student, thus, integrates functional components that support the acquisition process. The student is enabled to acquire lexical competence of the language in the acquisition process. The current study is a source of knowledge on adults learning in web-based applications in ESL acquisition programs. It examines the salient features and characteristics of the applications and their significance to adults in ESL acquisition programs to answer the research questions.

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Introduction

Adults learning in web-based English Language Acquisition Programs (ESL) using applications such as Odysseyware and wiki systems find their use as an instructional mode of delivery for the acquisition of English language as a second language a significant success. Typically, the approach of using web-based applications in the acquisition of English as a Second Language by adults has experienced significant growth with the rapid changes and advancement in technology. The web-based teaching approach and adoption of web-based applications is based on the success rates that have been experienced especially and integrated into ESL acquisition programs. Success is attained by the use of a range of features integrated into the applications, which include a user-friendly interface, dynamic files and video provisions, the ability to provide user involvement and control, and the ability to interact and use internet connections for the delivery of instructions. Other features integrated into the application include a recreation and practicing environment that allows the student to practice the use of English language vocabularies and other items that the student learns in the process of English language acquisition. However, the study focuses on other applications such as the wiki system that are discussed later in the study.

Typically, the approach enables teachers and adult students to interact in ESL programs, with teachers using different instructional methods to address diverse English Language needs of the adult student on different web-based applications that provide an enabling platform for the interactions (Terrell, 1991; Egbert & Jessup, 1996; Krashen, 1989).Typically, interactions between the teachers and the student are supported on different features provided on the web-based applications, making it a crucial mode of delivering instructions to the adult students in ESL acquisition programs. However, it is important to mention the underlying concept of using web-based applications in ESL acquisition programs to teach adult students (Diller, 1981). The concept is based on features integrated into the applications and the dynamic nature of technology, which provides an enabling environment to use web-based technologies in the acquisition of English as a Second Language. Typically, these technologies allow students and teachers to use integrated features on the applications to support the English Language acquisition process based on the design that supports students to grow their cognition capabilities. It is worth noting that ESL programs function on the underlying concept of cognition (Djigunović, 2007; Tarone, 1997). However, cognition is one of the concepts associated with the acquisition of English as a second language can be supported on web-based applications (Djigunović, 2007). According to studies by Tarone (1997), Swain (2000), MacWhinney (1997), and Lightbown, Spada and White (2003), from the perspective of cognitive psychology, cognition is an important component for the acquisition of English as a Second Language in ESL acquisition programs.

Typically, the cognition process in the acquisition of the second language is similar to the natural laws of learning and can be supported on web-based applications that are used in ESL acquisition programs (Gay, 2005; Feyton & Nutta, 1999; (Skehan, 1998). Thus, web-based applications provide an environment that supports the acquisition of English as a second language by the adult learner (Lightbown, Spada & White, 1993). It is important to understand that different approaches and applications are used in ESL acquisition programs with underlying theories and concepts. However, the focus in this paper is adults taking English Language as a Second Language in ESL acquisition programs on web-based applications (Feyton & Nutta, 1999). Therefore, the paper reviews in detail the theories and concepts underlying second language acquisition especially for adults in ESL acquisition programs that are also supported on web-based applications, and evaluates some applications such as wiki that are used in ESL acquisition programs. Web-based applications are technologies that are used to provide instructions and an environment for learning English as a second language. These technologies incorporate entire elements that are considered in teaching English as a second language that helps the student acquire the competencies required for the use of the language. The competencies in English attained due to the functionalities provided on web-based applications is a subject of investigations in the paper (Feyton & Nutta, 1999; Trahey & White, 1993).

Web-based applications provide different functionalities to support ESL acquisition programs for adults. These functionalities provide the flexibility for the teacher and the student to focus on the attainment of their goals in the English Language acquisition. These functionalities enable the teachers engaged in ESL acquisition programs to interact with the adult students in the English Language acquisition programs. Research has shown that an environment that fosters the development of the adult in English Language should provide the features that allow the learning goals and objectives to be met (Norris & Ortega, 2000). Among the requirements, that could help in the English Language acquisition include the quality of inputs, the opportunity to put into practice whatever has been learnt in class, high quality feedback, and individualized content that reflects individual learning needs of the adult student in the language acquisition process (Norris & Ortega, 2000).

Inputs are critically valuable and an essential characteristic of a web-based application used in the teaching and acquisition of English as a second language. That is because input is essential and reflects the current or modern socio-cognitive process prevailing in the modern learning contexts. Typically, input is valuable in addressing input during the learning of grammar, English Language lexicon, and other components that make the adult student proficient in the use of the language in the society (Surry & Ensminger, 2001). Therefore, across the learning spectrum, input is regarded, as an important component that web-based applications should reflect to address the needs of the adult learner. It is critical, therefore, for applications to provide the functionalities, features that allow the teacher interact with the student, and the student to interact with the teacher in the web-based applications environment. According to White (1987), the type and kind of input supported on the applications is crucial in successful acquisition of the second language. In addition to that, the web-based application can only provide the students with sufficient exposure to authentic, comprehensible, and diverse materials to support the English Language acquisition program both for the teacher and the adult student (Norris & Ortega, 2000).

A lot of research into the quality of input and the features provided on the web-based applications has been conducted to empirically test the validity of the applications in relation to the adult’s learning environment (White, 1987). The quantity of inputs in the same learning environment has also been a subject of much research. The type and quality of input supported on web-based applications to support the acquisition of English as a second language, therefore, has been a subject of interest and research as already mentioned. One of the authors who have done much research in that field is (VanPatten, 2000; (White, 1987). VanPatten (2000) theorized and provided empirical evidence showing that the type of input that should be comprehensible for both the teacher and the student to support the second language acquisition process.

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It has to be simplified to address the learning needs of the adult students, and modified to support all types of inputs that the adult student might provide the teacher with. VanPatten (2000) stresses the fact that the applications that are web-based should have the features that allow the teacher and the student to provide enhanced inputs to facilitate the learners English Language acquisition progress and provide the learner with the ability to manipulate input to meet the learning needs. However, a gap in knowledge appears on VanPatten,’s (2000) findings that show that a new trend established as a requirement to address the needs of the learner in the web-based applications environment. The new trend in terms of input to support the use of web-based applications to enable input that addresses changing learning needs were studied by Larsen-Freeman (1997) to bridge the knowledge gap evident in previous research developments. Larsen-Freeman and Long (1991), and Long (1997) established in their studies that web-based apparitions should not only factor textual inputs, but other types of inputs such as conversational inputs to address the learners linguistic needs and simplified in a way that makes it easy for the adult student to comprehend.

These studies show that web-based applications should integrate features that allow conversational delivery to be in short and clear sentences that the student finds easy to understand. The studies by Larsen-Freeman and Long (1991) and Hatch (1983) affirms that the sentence structure supported on the applications should be simpler and characterized by systematic use of syntactically simple sentences to comprehend. Larsen-Freeman and Long (1991) and Hatch (1983) established that the sentences be spoken at a slow rate for the students to understand leading to the construct simplified input. Another feature that could support the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language by the adult student was that which supported continues communication to avoid instances of communication breakdown. It is possible according to Larsen-Freeman and Long (1991) and Hatch (1983) for students to engage in negotiation of meaning when the spoken words are not well understood, while their interlocutors find it easy to comprehend meaning. One of the devices or features provided on web-based applications for adults to understand the language, proposed by Long (1983) included confirmation checks, repetition, recasts, and clarification requests among other features. These features according to Long (1983) could enable the learner and the teacher to engage in modified input thus, allowing the teachers and the students to be engaged in active interactions in the communication process to enable the student comprehend an notice any problems associated with the acquisition of the second language. Noticing problematic linguistic forms by the adult student enables the student to identify and notice personal weaknesses and look for ways to address the weaknesses. According to studies by Long (1983), noticing personal weaknesses in an important component in the acquisition of the second language.

Noticing personal weaknesses enables the adult student to identify what they need to bridge in the linguistic gap, and enable the student learn and address their linguistic deficiencies. Schmidt (2001) agrees with Long (1983) that when adult students notice their weaknesses, they are able to communicate their linguistic problems using the web-based applications for the teacher to address the needs in an interactive environment. The web-based applications provide an interactive environment that allows communication between the student and the teacher to be conducted. However, it is important to understand that input alone is not an enabling feature to enable the adult students in ESL acquisition programs to acquire the competence in the second language. Rather, it is important to understand that input has to be transformed into content that could be easily processed and understood by the student. Therefore, that gives way to the theoretical proposition that in the ESL acquisition program, input has to be tailored to address individual student weaknesses. Input has to be transformed into effective input that is relevant to the needs of the student, the learning environment, and be able to be transformed into an input-intake effective process. However, once the student is able to comprehend input provided by the teacher on the web-based applications, then it has to translate effectively into practicable knowledge. The acquired knowledge can only become effective for the student if the applications provide opportunities for the student to practice. Therefore high quality input has to be used in an environment that allows communicative practice opportunities.

Proficiency in ESL acquisition programs based on high quality input content can only be translated to practical knowledge if the applications provide the student with the opportunities to practice what they have been exposed. Communication is therefore, one of the most effective tools used in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. Communication enables the student practice what they have been taught previously. However, a critical evaluation of communication as a tool for effective acquisition of English Language as a Second Language shows that communication elicits understanding when coupled with feedback. In addition to that, communication creates an interactive environment that enables the teacher to comprehend the weaknesses in the student and the student to understand what the teacher is communicating to the student (Zhao, 2003a). The teacher in that environment is able to understand the needs of their students and strategize the best approach to address the problem. Thus, communication is viewed from the perspective of social culturalism and interactionism perspectives. Communication, therefore, creates an interactive environment that provides the student and the teacher with the opportunities to communicate and identify the weaknesses of the student and the best strategy to address them. Therefore, it is safe to conclude that web-based applications provide an environment that is supportive of ESL acquisition programs for adults learners (Zhao, 2003a).

From a theoretical perspective, interactive communication is a strong component used on web-based applications to address the learning needs of the student in ESL acquisition programs (Zhao, 2003b). That idea is supported by the sociocultural theory. The sociocultural theory reinforces the need for interactive communication between the student and the teacher as higher forms of mental activities are communicated in symbols. These forms of communication processes provide a platform for the students to mediate their cognitive processes that include second language acquisitions. It is important on note that language learning is a mental activity that can be supported on web-based applications. Learning is therefore an activity that enable interaction between the teacher and the student with language as the mediating tool. Language facilitates interactions in a social environment that enables the learner or the adult student to internalize the culture system with language as an enabling component. Thus, learning is enabled in an authentic communication environment with dialogue playing a significant role in the interaction process. However, for interactions to be complete, it is important for the applications in ESL acquisition programs to provide features and abilities that allow high quality feedback.

High quality feedback, as one of the features provided on web-based applications and an essential component in the learning process is a classical concept that is supported by a number of theories. In theory and practice, feedback is defined as “conditioned connection of behavior and reward” (Trahey & White, 1993).This definition places the student at the center of the learning process and places emphasis on feedback an one of the components that supports students in becoming proficient in the acquisition of English as a second language. According to the cognitive theory, feedback is viewed as an informative function that reinforces the corrective function in the learning process and enables learners identify mistakes they make in the leaning process. Web-based applications that are used in ESL acquisition programs provide features that enable the student and the teacher interact by providing feedback in either way. The web-based applications provide features that enable and enhance social interactions and through the interactions, one is able to put into practice the knowledge acquired in class. Feedback is therefore a crucial component in the acquisition of s a second language for adults in ESL acquisition programs.

To help adult learners strengthen their grasp of the second language, feedback is a crucial component. Positive feedback, as many researchers agree in the acquisition of second languages encourages learners grow in their linguistic knowledge. When feedback is accompanies with confirmation of the learner’s progress, the student becomes motivated in the acquisition of the language with the benefits of motivation acting on the mind of the student. Thus, the strength of the learner’s interlanguage system is enhanced in the process. Feedback in this case can be either negative or positive. Negative feedback also provides the student with the an indication of their weaknesses and encorurages the student to conduct further research in the ESL acquisition process, therefore, enahcne their productive growth in the language. However, many researchers contend that negative feedback shoul d not be used as atool in the acquisition of English as a second language. Use despite that disagreement, it has been proven that negative feedback and positive feedback are complimentary ad cab to enhance the vocabulary and language syntax in the student. However it has also been researched and established that negative feedback can provide demotivate the student, therefore, be detrimental to the progress of the student rather than providing positive motivation in the acquisition of the second language. Hiwever, negative feedback is commonly seen as an approach that discourages the learner in engaging in active communication and interaction in a social environment, therefore, demotivating the student from continuing with the ESL acquisition program (White, 1991; Trahey & White, 1993).

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However, negative feedback has played a significant role in the acquisition of English as a second language as illustrated in the following argument. “The kind of knowledge to be learned, the kind of evidence presented to the learner, the situation in which the learning takes place and the cognitive capabilities of the learner all play a part in the efficient or non-efficient use of negative evidence” (Schachter (1991). From that argument, it is clear that the cognitive abilities of the student and the learning environment are important aspects in determining the value of negative feedback. Therefore, negative feedback can also provide positive development of the student in the acquisition of the second language. However, to exhaustively examine the impact of negative feedback on the student, it is crucial to study some research studies by authors who have ventured into that field. One of the authors who conducted extensive research into the value of negative feedback was (Long, 1998). Long (1998) conducted studies to identify the effects of negative feedback on the progress of the student by categorizing it into three. Negative feedback, according to Long (1998) falls into implicit feedback which occurred due to communication breakdown, explicit feedback in the form of recast, and overcorrections.

Carroll (2001) took the studies further by adding to what Long (1998) has discovered were the effects of negative feedback by establish the fact that negative feedback provided students with the opportunities to improve in the acquisition of the second language. According to the new findings, negative feedback could help students identify their weakness and learn “information associated with individual lexical items”, induce “abstract linguistic generalizations” (Carroll, 2001) to help them restructure their syntax and grammatical progress in the language. Other research findings showed that students could be enables by negative feedback to identify problematic areas in the acquisition of English as a second language with a better learning effect than when negative feedback is not provided. Negative feedback is provided to the student in ESL acquisition programs using web-based applications that have integrated features that support the feedback process. Other researchers have agreed that negative feedback is also available in free conversations, classroom interactions; task based interactions, and on web-based interactions. Negative feedback is a diverse approach is used diversely to address student needs in diverse environments.

All research papers point to the significance of feedback in the ESL acquisition programs. In particular, other researchers agree that negative feedback has a special role to play in the learning process. It is however commonly agreed that there is no single tradeoff to the solution of feedback and it is crucial for solutions to be searched that provide feedback that addresses the needs of the adult student in each specific learning environment. Among the factors to consider when selecting the type of feedback to apply on students is their learning capabilities, their ages, the length the program takes, the immediacy of feedback, and individual learning differences. Thus, web-based applications use din ESL acquisition programs have salient features that support the needs of each student in their unique learning environments. In addition to addressing individual needs of the student, it is crucial to consider the content in relation to individual needs.

Content and individual needs qualify to as individualized content. Individualized content addresses the needs of each adult student in the ESL acquisition program. That is because different students have different learning capabilities and language proficiency, learning objectives, cognitive development, task performance, language intake, and other significant factors that affect the learner’s motivation. Not all learners develop similar linguistic aptitude. Different have different rates of acquiring proficiency while others might have some background knowledge of English than others. Therefore, it is not possible to generalize the cognitive development of all adult students under a general assumption. It is also clear that different learners have different motivations for learning English as a second language. Oxford (1990) has researched and established the fact that different learners value different learning styles and strategies. That includes the strategies for the acquisition of the second language in grammar, pronunciations, and vocabularies. Each adult student in the ESL acquisition program have their own reading and listening abilities. In addition to that, some learners spend more time studying the language on their own while others do not.

Thus, web-based application programs should address different and diverse needs of the student under different learning environments. That is attained in the ESL acquisition programs on web-based applications by enabling the student adjust to their levels of difficult in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. It is therefore important to customize the content and design applications that address each individual needs of the student. A well customized application provides the functionalities to motivate the student, enable the student attain their goals, while accommodating and addressing their individual cognitive development processes and psychological needs. Egbert, Chao, & Hanson-Smith (1999) have agreed with the above findings and support their position by asserting that optimal learning environments should allow and enable the student with ample opportunities to interact and negotiate meaning and enable learners to interact in English Language with an authentic audience.

Egbert, Chao, & Hanson-Smith (1999) reinforce their findings by specifying that the audience the adult student enrolled in ESL acquisition programs should be authentic and allow sufficient time for the student and the teacher to provide feedback and respond accordingly. In addition to that, the researchers established that web-based applications should provide guidance to the student to actively participate in the learning process with full attention. However, learners are recommended to study in an environment that has ideal stress and anxiety levels, and provide support for learners’ autonomy. These features are important in ESL acquisition programs since they are valuable in assisting the learner develop their cognition abilities in the second language acquisition process (Skehan, 1998).

It is generally agreed among researchers that a motivating and psychologically enabling environment should offer the adult student consensus and unconscious development the mind. It should also allow the student to accept, evaluate, and provide feedback on task performance and promote cultural interactions between the learner and other audiences. Pennington (1996) argues that the web-based applications environment should provide the adult student with the opportunities to interact with their peers and learn according to their objectives and goals. Pennington (1996) argues further that web-based applications provide an environment that enables the student to be exposed to the context for learning and enables learners to be independent.

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Studies have shown that the above conditions cannot be fulfilled in a classroom environment, but can be supported using technology such as web-based applications. Therefore, technology, in the form of web-based applications provide an environment that supports high quality inputs. That is possible due to the features integrated into the web-based applications. The high quality inputs supported on the web-based applications include input via different media combinations. Web-based application provide a wide range of materials which at times are free of charge. Web-based applications allow adult students in ESL classes access materials such as audio and visual aids and video conferencing, and other authentic audio visual materials. Other support material offered on web-based applications include features that allow the student to instantly access information on the internet, providing up to date materials for English Language acquisition.

Web-based applications also provide features and the flexibility to easily configure and create comprehensible materials that with enhanced input. That adds to the possibility of the materials being processed and upload to address the learning needs of the adult student. That includes the ability to enhance text and provide enhanced features that could allow the learner interact with the system in the learning process. In addition to that, these applications have enhanced features that allow the student to input information and provide feedback to the teacher. Other technologies have machine translation capabilities that assist the teacher and the student convert text to a particular output. Thus, web-based applications are technologies that provide enhanced features that support enhanced inputs while controlling flooded inputs that might otherwise dilute the content.

Studies have established that web-based applications are technologies that appeal to different learning styles and student capabilities. That allows the learner to take control of their learning environment and provide individualized inputs. In addition to that, the teacher is able to use technologies to make individualized learning become a reality by manipulating content and materials to suit the needs of each student. The technologies also address the lingual needs of each learner by addressing the internal variables of the students in ESL acquisition programs. The applications are configured to address different cognitive abilities of each of the students in the ESL acquisition programs. Technology has also been identified as crucial factor that lowers affect filters which is input in the form of filters. However, there is need to evaluate the effectiveness of technology in the second language acquisition for adults in ESL acquisition programs.

Studies by different authors, there is a rick set of evidence that points to the effectiveness of technology in the ESL acquisition programs. Empirical evidence has shown that technology, which constitutes web-based applications provide high quality inputs and enables access efficiency to the digital multimedia technologies. Digital multimedia provide high quality learning materials and consists of text, visual, and audio materials. These materials are used to make presentations in the learning environment of ESL acquisition programs. These presentations are crucial since they make the memory of the student indelible. These applications also provide a significant amount of capabilities such as supporting accurate and effective playbacks. That allows the adult learner access specific segments of a document, which saves the student a lot of precious time since these sections, can be accessed easily (Johnston, 1999; Thorton & Dudley, 1996).

Studies have shown that use of web-based applications while providing the student with easy access to learning materials; also provide the student with the enhanced authenticity. Enhanced authenticity provided on web-based applications provide the student with material that contain natural content and which are context rich and literature on the second language being studied. The content rich materials provided on web-based applications effectively motivate the learner in the ESL acquisition program.

Researchers have studied the level of effectiveness of video as one authentic material on Spanish students. One group of students followed the curriculum using video for eight weeks while others attended classes for the same period. At the end of the study period, it was realized that students using video to as an instructional method had developed better comprehension and oral presentations than students engaged on a face to face interactions without using any technologies to deliver instructions. Herron (2000) was one of the researchers who realized that video as one of the tools used on web-based applications provided students with an environment that enabled them study English Language as a Second Language with much flexibility than when in a natural face to face interaction. Perhaps one could conclude that video provided the students with the flexibility to follow accurately instructions in the ESL acquisition process. It was realized that using such kind of tools enabled the student study toward attaining their goals and objectives in a flexible environment. In the same setting, it was realized that the students developed a positive attitude toward the use of web-based applications. However, as noted elsewhere, web-based applications should enable the student to be in control of their learning by setting their own goals and objectives. Therefore, it is critical for the web-based applications to enhance comprehensibility through leaner control of the multimedia annotations (Cummins, 1988).

For effective acquisition of English language, input should be comprehensible and necessary with the learning materials containing comprehensible content (Krashen, 1985). However, many authentic materials are incomprehensible especially for learners who have no previous knowledge in English language. Therefore, that makes it difficult for the new student to acquire English Language proficiency without any help. Therefore, support at that point is required to provide comprehensible input that can also be processed and taken in. It is therefore important to provide comprehensible input to be more effective such as ensuring that these applications provide speech at a low speed to enhance comprehensibility of the language. It is also important to provide the student with authentic communication opportunities (MacWhinney, 1997).

Communication is a crucial component that allows interactions to occur between the student and the instructor providing instructional materials. Web-based applications provide the student with the opportunities to engage in authentic communication between the student and the teacher in the learning process. One of the technologies identified a falling under this category is the computer mediated communication (CMS). These technologies, as already been identified elsewhere in the paper, provide an environment for learners to interact in social interaction groups without the need to be physically close together. The technology has created a platform for interactivity, thus making the social platform a learning environment. Such interactions provide the student with the opportunity to understand the cultural setting of the target language and encourage a learner centered social interactions. Many of the software applications that are web-based can be classified into synchronous and asynchronous applications (Tseng, Chu, Hwang & Tsai, 2008).

Tseng, Chu, Hwang and Tsai (2008) have shown that based software applications are classified into synchronous applications. Typical examples include audio-based conferencing systems, video-based conferencing systems, and other applications that are a combination of the two applications. As mentioned elsewhere in the paper, web-based applications should provide a degree of anonymity for the student. Asynchronous applications have been identified to fit into the category of applications that provide such functionalities. However, each of the applications has a degree of anonymity and user control. Other applications included in the list are asynchronous applications. Asynchronous applications provide and varying degrees of user control and have unlimited communication controls. These applications are mostly text based (Tseng, Chu, Hwang & Tsai, 2008).

Another area where technology enables the student to communicate with the teacher and colleagues is through leaner talk environment. These include power point presentations, any other interactive technology supported activity, which enables the student, and the teacher, interact in a learning environment. Examples of other activities include running instructional applications, running games and other simulations, and other manner of stimulate talk (Felder & Silverman, 1988).

Another strategy that facilitates communication between the student and the teacher is the human computer interactions. That draws on the concept where students interactively talk with artificial intelligence agents to carry out certain tasks.

At the simplest level interaction with the computer can occur in written, spoken, or a combination of both methods. It is possible for a computer program to generate utterances that can be put into writing with other additional speech synthesis and enhancement components (Felder & Silverman, 1988). The interactions enable the student get good quality feedback. Feedback has been identified as a crucial component in the ESL acquisition program. Other capabilities provided on web-based applications are the abilities to analyze student errors and in providing feedback that is helpful to the student (Felder & Silverman, 1988).

According to Felder and Silverman (1988), it is also important o realize that the human factor is crucial when interacting with the technologies. Human beings have different capacities especially for adults in ESL acquisition programs.

It is therefore critical to examine the outcomes that learners experience in the acquisition process to establish the validity of use of the applications in the ESL acquisition programs. Among the items to examine in the use of technology are learner cognitive domain, the affect domain, improved technology skills, and changed pedagogy.

Different research studies have shown the benefits of using web-based applications in the acquisition of English as a second language by the adult learners. One such benefit and outcome is the learner cognitive domain. Typically, results shows that students increase in English Language acquisition skills, abilities to use the language to interact with the teacher and others using English as a second language, improved performance in the use of the language, and successful application of the language in daily lives. One of the factors considers crucial

It is crucial to examine the issue of motivation for adult students in ESL acquisition programs since web-based applications should support the adult student to attain the main goals for which they are studying. Motivation therefore plays a significant role as the underlying factor in adults enrolling and taking ESLA acquisition programs.

Motivation

Motivation plays a significant role in the attainment of goals and objectives set by the adult learner in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. In theory, research has shown that “Attitude and motivation are key points in second language acquisition” (Qashoa, 2006). It is further argued that “Without motivation, success will be hard to come by, and the case of learning a second or foreign language is little different” (Ushioda, n.d). Other studies equally view motivation as crucial in the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language It is a common-place belief in language pedagogy and second language acquisition research that language-related attitudes and motivated behavior play a highly important role in second and foreign language learning” (Csizer & Kormos, 2008). Motivation by other researchers has been viewed as being key in driving and individual to make certain decisions. Motivation is the crucial component in making a person makes certain decisions. Thus, motivation is the power that makes a person make decisions and show certain behaviors (Djigunović, 2007).

A number of intrinsic and extrinsic factors act as different sources of motivation, for adults in ESL acquisition programs. Intrinsic factors are explained by the learner’s natural interest in the acquisition of the second language and use of the web-based applications. Without the motivating effect of using web-based applications and the ultimate benefits the learner intends to gain from the acquisition of English as a second language, it is difficult for the adult learner to be devoted in the acquisition of the language using technology (Djigunović, 2007). However, extrinsic rewards also contribute significantly in motivating the adult learner to use web-based applications in the acquisition of the language. Since adult students pursue the second language acquisition program to interact with others in the society and seek for employment among other factors, they find themselves compelled to study the language as a second language to attain the extrinsic goals. Other motivating factors in the second language acquisition, in theory that compels adults to enroll in ESL program using web-based applications include thir hope to succeed in the task of acquiring English as a second language that could support them to communicate as carry out their daily tasks (Djigunović, 2007). Therefore, in their studies, adults regard that success draws on a combination of satisfaction and rewards. In theory, a number of underlying components characterize motivation. These include attitude, the need, and desire to be efficient in the acquisition and use of the language, the underlying need for the language, the desire to be competent in the interactive use of the language, the curiosity for the adult to be competent in the language, and other external motivating factors (Djigunović, 2007).

In theory, it is crucial that the adult student should value the motivating factors while getting convinced that teachers also regard and value their views. However, it is difficult to measure the motivation of the adult student and quantify it on a numerical scale. One understands that motivation can, however, be measured using a number of proposed methods (Kato, Yasumoto & Aacken, 2007). The measure of motivation shows the extent to which adult students are motivated to use web-based applications in ESL acquisition programs. These methods include measuring the motivational intensity of the adult student in ESL acquisition programs, evaluating attitude toward the acquisition of English as a second language using web-based applications, and measuring the desire by the student to learn English using web-based applications (Kato, Yasumoto & Aacken, 2007).

One of the methods used to measure motivation is motivation intensity. Motivation intensity is driven by the feelings of stress expressed by the adult student, the nervousness of the student, and the student’s demotivation. That is especially the case for adults taking English Language as a second language. The level of motivation and demotivation continues to change with the level of advancement or difficulty experienced by the adult student in ESL acquisition programs using web-based applications. Sometimes the level of difficulty of using web-based applications also acts as a motivating or a demotivating factor. Motivation is a key element that enables the student to take control of their learning. Therefore, “Understanding the students’ goals and motivation in learning English in addition to de-motivating factors help the teachers, education policy makers and curriculum planners to improve the students’ proficiency” (Qashoa, 2006). While that statement is true, it is clear that learning English using web-based applications presents additional motivating and demotivating factors. However, using web-based applications to attain proficiency in the use of English as a second language-using web-based applications and as a means to succeed in the attainment of their goals is a strong motivating factor.

Additional issues include the flexibility of using web-based applications in the acquisition of English as a second language. While the ultimate goal is to use English as a tool for interactions in the work place and carry out normal and daily duties, the importance of learning English key to the success of studying the language-using web-based applications (Sun, 2009). It was also noted that exercises play a significant role in the teaching and acquisition of English as a second language. Typically, exercises on web-based applications that are learner centered and focused focus learner’s attention by allowing the student to gain lexical competence, proficiency in the acquisition of specific linguistic elements. To attain that, features integrated into the applications provide the baseline for students to enhance their competence in the acquisition process. Among the features crucial to the successful use of the application, include voice presentations, features that support interaction between the students and the teachers, and features that allow the construction of sentences for exercising. In addition to that, web-based applications provide the features that allow the use of providing feedback to the student (Rosenfeld, 2007). Typically, feedback is an essential component in the accusation of English as a second language since the adult student is able to get corrective feedback and identify errors and corrective measures to take in the acquisition process. Typically, the correctness or incorrectness is associated with the acquisition of grammar, pronunciations, vocabularies, spellings, and other elements in the acquisition process (Sun, 2009).

A number of studies show that adults in ESL acquisition programs are susceptible to motivating and demotivating factors in the use of web-based applications in ESL acquisition programs. Among the motivating and demotivating factors, include the flexibility one finds when using web-based applications. When web-based applications have features that a user finds difficulty to interact with, they become demotivated in use of the applications or find many difficulties in using the applications in ESL acquisition programs (Rosenfeld, 2007). Such challenges are daunting and might easily demotivate an adult student in the ESL acquisition program. However, there should be strategies by both the teacher and the designer of the applications to address the demotivating factors that get in the way of the acquisition of English as a second language. The web-based application should therefore, provide an effective and engaging environment for the adult student engaged in ESL acquisition program using web-based applications (Rosenfeld, 2007; Sun, 2009).

Among the strategies for motivating the adult student in the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language is setting high expectations for the student while using web-based applications with features that present the adult student with a cognitive, challenging, rigorous, interactive, and curricula content that is authentic and that reflects the student’s needs (Sun, 2009). It is also proposed that the web-based application in conjunction with the teacher should create a learning environment that requires that both “use nonverbal cues, graphic organizers, video demonstrations, and illustrations to present new content concepts” (Sun, 2009). In addition to that, it is purposed that the use software programs that focus on providing the student with a learning environment that reflects their needs and focused on individualized learning. Another prosed solution to the challenges that adult students experience in ESL programs include the use of blogs and encouraging social interactions to provide individual adults the opportunity to learn by using the language in a natural environment.

Another proposed approach to address the challenges adult students face in ESL acquisition programs includes creating opportunities for oral language experiences, online discussion groups to increase the level and frequency of interactions, establishing and using online video conferencing to encourage interactions (Conttia, 2007). It is also important to use software applications that encourage interactions, record, and repeat the oral language for the student to identify where they have gone wrong. Additional suggestions include continuous assessments to establish the proficiency of the student in ESL acquisition programs using web-based applications. To attain the goal of motivating the student in the ESL acquisition program for the adult student, it is important to examine the role of technology in the English Language acquisition process. Typically, that could include looking at blended learning as one of the strategies used in technological acquisition of English as a second language (Katsuhisa, 2005).

The practical world consists of an interactive environment between different people of different cultures and languages. The use of technology to engage and make the language-learning environment and the acquisition of the language effective and efficient might not only be sufficient to address the English learning needs of the adult student, but also the use of activities on the web-based applications provide an ideal environment to support the studies. One such approach is the use of blended learning. Blended learning provides an environment that addresses the needs of the adult student on web-based applications that include web 2.0 technologies. However, as web 2.0 technologies form the baseline of the study, it is important for teachers to understand what the student in ESL acquisition programs needs to understand about the acquisition of the second language.

Research shows that it is possible for adults to acquire a second language using web-based applications. However, in creating an effective environment for the adult learner engaged in ESL acquisition programs, an adult student can make systematic errors that a child can make when studying a language for the first time (Philp, 2003). These errors appear strongly connected to the native language of the adult learner. Therefore, it is important for the teacher to identify the English Language structures that the student has to learn before proceeding to the next level (Philp, 2003). Some researchers argue that practice makes perfect while others contend that practice does not make perfect. Whatever, the position held by the authors, it is critical to identify practice as a crucial component in ESL acquisition programs can be presented in different forms based on the features interacted in the web-based applications.

Another component that adult teachers have to understand is the approach used in correcting student errors. Errors corrections and feedback are important components used to evaluate the progress of the student. Often, adult students repeat the same mistake just as a child learning the language does. In all these interactions, web-based applications should have features integrated to the system to support interactive communication between the teacher and the adult student. Feedback is discussed intensively and its effect on the ESL acquisition of the adult student. Thus, the importance of the value of web-based technologies in the study of English, as a second language is critical and should be evaluated.

Web-based applications support the acquisition of English as a second language in ESL acquisition programs for adults taking English as a second language. One such areas that web-based applications are use dint he acquisition of English as a second language is in vocabulary learning. One of the applications used in the acquisition of vocabularies in the flash card software.

Flashcards is a program students in ESL programs use to learn vocabularies in English language. The program uses a paired associate format in the acquisition of the language. Each item is presented and students are asked to associate meaning to the items use in the study. Thus, the strength of the software in associate meaning is where students rely on translation of words and their meaning from the first language to English as a second language. Thus, the study draws on pedagogical and practical concerns students and teachers experience in the ESL acquisition process. The use of associate learning is reinforced based on findings n empirical evidence that suggests the efficacy of the program in second language acquisition.

One of the benefits associated with flashcard technology is the ability to monitor the progress of the student more effectively than using paper based monitoring and earning paradigm. It has been proved that computers can be programmed to provide the student with the opportunity to track one’s own progress while allowing the teacher to examine and track the student’s performance, therefore, take corrective interventions in the acquisition process. It is also possible to offer enhanced presentation of materials for the adult student using multimedia applications with a net positive motivational effect on the adult student.

In addition to the benefits adult students experience in the use of web-based applications in ESL acquisition programs, web-based applications are designed with a number of discrepancies that make the application suitable for use by adult students in different learning environments and facing different challenges. Among the differences in features about these applications, include editing features, the type of exercise offered on the applications, and the type of schedules on the applications. That implies that inconsistencies are used to address individual needs of the student and not just for a specific audience. It is agreed commonly among English Language adult teachers that these applications are increasingly being used to provide instructions for adult students in ESL acquisition programs. It is therefore important to review some of the features that integrated into flashcard as web-based applications that adult students use in the ESL acquisition programs.

Studies show that flashcard is an application that is learner centered. The application focuses on the user needs and learning capabilities. Among the positive features integrated into flashcard, include a creation function that enables the student to create their own flashcards. The features an also support multilingual feature allow the use, creation, and support multi-word units, and has the ability to hold different types of information. The information may include support for data entry and text editing, images, and flashcards.

An ideal flashcard program consists of features that support users to create their own flashcards. Some of the programs have integrated flashcards features allowing the user start using the flashcards without the need to create one. However, other applications require the user to create one’s own flashcards according to individual needs and goals. However, Foster (2009) supports the idea of a program that comes with integrated flashcards for the user to start using without the need to create one’s own flashcards. Walker (2006) supports the position held by Foster (2009) by arguing that when a program has a wide selection f flashcards already made for the user, users find it convenient to interact with the program and learn a wide range of vocabularies without the time wasting effort of creating their own flashcards. However, the authors agree on a common point that it is good for a software program to come with a flashcard creation function to accommodate the needs of adult students interested in creating their own flashcards. It has been established that such a function is useful for adult students in the technical discipline, which do not have readymade flashcards with technical vocabularies.

While facts show that flashcards provide a significant support in studying vocabularies, which is an important phase in second language acquisition, it is increasingly clear that flashcards offer significant support in second language acquisition by offering multilingual support. It is important to note that flashcards should have a functionality that supports one to create their own items and translate the items into English Language as a Second Language (Bohlke, 2002; Burston, 2007; Walker, 2006). Flashcards have been identified as having the capability to facilitate then learning of vocabularies, which leads to improved performance in the second language. That is because flashcards are used in a multilingual learning environment with multilingual capabilities. Flashcards provide the functionality that enables learners of English Language as a Second Language to use language translations in the acquisition of the second language.

Another area of interest is the multi word units supported using flashcards. That is reflected in the recent corpus linguistics. The recent corpus linguistics is based on the concept that a learner should be able, using flashcards, to create a number of multiword units and single unit words. That enables the learning of words such as idioms to be acquired effectively in a paired associate format.

The importance of learning the semantics of words and enables an individual understand individual language items distinctly. Typical examples are the need to understand the meaning of a word. An example is when one tries to understand what a word like amaze means. The software should enable the student to be able to distinguish the word from synonyms such as astound, astonish, surprise, or flabbergast. If the learner uses words that have semantic similarities to distinguish it from other words, it is possible for the learner to grasp a detailed understanding of the word. That is attained by use of the flashcard software that allows the learner create their own set to review words that belong to the same category. Once that is done, the leaner is able to grasp a deep meaning of each word and be able to differentiate the meaning of words with semantic similarities (Tinkham, 1993, 1997; Waring, 1997a). However, there is an important point to consider in using flashcard software to learn vocabularies. It has been established through research that learning words with similar semantic meaning sometimes might limit the learner to grasp the full meaning of a word and limit the vocabularies of the learner. For that reason, it is recommended that adult students are advised to study words in semantic sets that they are already familiar with. The acquisition process using semantically similar words also is a learning paradigm for ESL acquisition programs supported on web-based applications. However, learning should not only be supported using flashcards with limited functionalities such as semantically similar words, but it should be a learning process supported on the software that reflects diverse needs of the student in the second language acquisition.

It has been suggested that ideal software should have retrieval and presentation capabilities. It also should provide a number of features that enable the student to conduct several English Language exercises, while promoting retrieval and promotion of generative use. Essentially the mode of retrieval should be reflected in the type of content accessed and support for a specific activity.

Retrieval of content and other information used in the acquisition of English as a second language supports a learning environment that enables learners to access content specific to their learning needs. The mode of retrieval mode should also enable content generation and presentation to suit different user needs and abilities. That is besides the contents reflecting new words and vocabularies that the learner tested to understand their vocabulary retention abilities. That implies that learners should be introduced to new words and vocabularies using the web-based on the use of software programs and tested on to enable them familiarize themselves with unfamiliar words. The flashcard software should therefore have features that enable the learner to retrieve content and present the content in a manner that enables the student to familiarize themselves with unfamiliar words and target words in their mental lexicon. One of the features that facilitates understanding and learning of unfamiliar words are features that support retrieval. A good retrieval machines supports and guides the user to retrieve unfamiliar words, therefore improving performance-enhancing motivation of the adult learner in the acquisition of the language.

Retrieval, as already mentioned, is enabled to support the learner using the software access content and present it in a manner that supports the learner to attain the four levels of recall. Typically, the web-based application used in the acquisition of English as a second language for adults in ESL programs have features that support or enable the student to perform any of the four types of retrieval. These include productive recall and productive recognition, and receptive recall and receptive recognition. Each of the retrievals has benefits the student learner in different ways. In receptive recognition, one is expected or required to select rather than produce the meaning of any word that has been retrieved. On the other hand, productive recognition requires the student identify a word and its corresponding meaning using software used in the acquisition of the language. It is important to note that in receptive recall, the student is required to produce the meaning of a word, while they are required to produce a target word corresponding to a given meaning in productive recall (Laufer et al., 2004; Laufer & Goldstein, 2004). A number of studies conducted on the features that qualify flashcard to be qualified a good software is the ability for the integrated features to support different retrievals in a single lesson. With such features available on the web-based application, the student makes larger gains in receptive and productive knowledge. This approach is supported by research done by (e.g. Griffin & Harley, 1996; Waring, 1997b; Webb, 2002, 2009b).

Based on the benefits associated with retrieval of information, studies show that increasing retrieval efforts enhances memory. That is further enhanced by use of increasing difficulties of retrieval. Therefore, flashcards should be designed to provide increasing levels of difficulties for the student in ESL acquisition programs (Tomasello, 1998, Odlin,1989). Studies that support the use of flashcard software indicate that the use of flashcard software becomes more beneficial by increasing vocabulary use and generative use of words. This is made possible by using the software to encounter previously met words or apply these words in novel context. However, it is commonly understood that when a student meets a word, it is possible to forget the word if it is met for the first time. It is generally recommended therefore that the software have features that enable the user address the element of adaptive sequencing. Adaptive sequencing supports the student in the acquisition of the language based on different features that enable the student to review a new word encountered for the first time. Repetitive review of new words is based on the capabilities of computers and web-based applications to support and facilitate adaptive sequencing of items. Adaptive sequencing of items draws on systematic review of lexical items. The systematic sequencing of items is based on the previous performance of the student in ESL acquisition programs. Under this approach, the web-based application keeps track of the performance of each individual student by ensuring that words the leaner finds difficult to grasp are studied more frequently compared with the words the learner finds easy to grasp (Tomasello,1998).

Therefore, a number of approaches are used to address adaptive sequencing in the student. One of the most effective approaches is the expanded rehearsal technique. Web-based applications have integrated features that support and enable the adult student ( Baddeley, 1997, Ellis, 1995; Hulstijn, 2001; Pimsleur, 1967). This approach enables the student get more engagements as and test with a gradually increasing number of schedules as learning proceeds. That implies a new student has fewer learning schedules on web-based applications that a student who has had sometime taking ESL acquisition programs on web-based applications. As mentioned above, the language acquisition process is a process requie s that web-based applications used by adults in the acquisition of English as a seeing language should provide features that enable the student capture the lexicon of the language.

English Language learning, just like any other language factors the lexicon as a key component in the acquisition of the language. Therefore, from the theoretical and practical perspectives, understanding the language lexicon is vital for second language acquisition programs. The lexicon has been viewed as an important element in the ESL acquisition. The lexicon, as has been argued by different researchers factors the visual-spatial structure. The lexicon is therefore regarded as an important interface component in the ESL acquisition. As has been noted, the lexicon “encodes phonological and morphological information that is vital in establishing meaning contrasts. In addition, it is the source of important syntactic information in verb argument structure” (Tomasello,1998).

The lexicon helps the teacher and the student establish what needs to be learnt and taught in the acquisition program. However, whatever is to be learnt has to be evaluated fit into fit into the needs of the student. However, different models have been proposed that address different learner needs. One such is the focus on meaning, language syntax, form, and morphology. In addition to that, the web-based applications for adults enrolled in ESL acquisition programs identify the

It is important to note that computer provides a platform for the acquisition of English as a second language by adults by focusing on the meaning, language syntax, form, and morphology of the second language. Therefore, adults are able to use the technologies to develop their language acquisition based on the features that are integrated into the applications. As already mentioned elsewhere in the current paper, the lexicon is an important component of the second language that each adult learner has to be introduced using features integrated into the application to acquire lexical competence. It is important from the theoretical and practical perspectives in the acquisition of the second language.

Each of the components including the meaning, language syntax, form, and morphology has a special meaning in the language that the adult has to learn. These components make significant contributions in the student becoming competent in the use of the language and acquiring the basic structure of the language. Each of the components, therefore, has to be entered into a lexical entry to make which consists of a link between independent language structures for morphological components. It is important to note that the lexicon also consists of components that are larger than words. Examples include phrases like “right to life” which are stored in the lexicon. The storage of these words is in a complex morphosyntactic system. This kind of storage can be accessed and analyzed using web-based applications. Therefore, web-based applications can support and provide an environment that supports the adults in the acquisition of English Language as a second language.

Problem statement

The use of web-based applications in the acquisition of English as a second language in ESL programs for adults has been on the rise. However, there is significant worry and contention as to the effectiveness of the applications in providing adults with an environment that fosters their growth in the acquisition of English as a second language. There is significant concern whether the applications provide an environment and integral features that support the cognitive process of the acquisition of the language as a second language. It is commonly observed that web-based programs provides English Language learners (ELL) with a cognitive learning process that are characterized by the use of systematically organized articles and nouns combined in a manner to allow intuitive acquisition of the language, and ensure that the learners acquire the English Language vocabulary and syntax effectively. It is therefore, important in relation to the current study, that web-based applications provide the features and abilities for the adult learners to acquire the competence they are seeking for. To that effect, the web-based applications are designed with features, as according to Pettito (2003) that allows for a structured input of learning English language. These features rely on the use of listening, reading, content vocabulary, writing, and studying skills.

The use of web-based applications in the acquisition of English as a second language is supported by an established trend showing a significant rise and strong relationship between the numbers of English Language learners who use technology to learn English Language lessons in classes consisting of learners who speak different languages. Web-based applications provide an environment that allows the adult student to acquire the language with increasing levels of difficulty. Web-based programs therefore, use an incremental approach of difficulty associated with learning English Language as a second language. In this approach, a combination of sounds, pictures, and text in the language acquisition process are used. The context of the current research focuses on English Language learners who speak Spanish, Tagalog, Portuguese, Farsi, Arabic, Russian, and Hebrew. In theory, second languages inculcated into the student provide meaningful input that allows the learner to understand and use the language effectively. Krashen (1989) takes the argument further by focusing on the use of web-based technology techniques that associate pictures and visual aids with new words in the learning process to allow the learner capture the meaning of new words with clarity and without any ambiguity. However, as the learner progresses in the learning process, the aids used becomes more complex making the learning process reliant on communication of content-based on a previously learned language by associating the language with associated images and their meaning.

Thus, the process progressively becomes complex with memory playing the central role in the learning of the new language. In addition to that, the learner becomes acquainted with the language through a cognitive process that requires the use of pictures and other visual presentations that are made available using web-based technologies. Studies by Lee and VanPatten (1995) provide extensive discussions on listening as one of the foundational techniques web-based technologies use to enable learners of English Language acquire knowledge of the language. In the context of Lee and VanPatten (1995) theoretical assumptions, success in learning a foreign language begins with observations. Observations can be presented to the learner in computerized form. Linguistic observations provide the baseline for learners to understand any information the instructor intends to communicate to the student making the student acquire a sturdy foundation for knowledge. Typically, web-based technologies draw on the theoretical foundation of observations as the preliminary step toward the acquisition of English Language as a second language. In the context of the current study, web-based technologies provide learners of the English Language with many reading and spoken observation exercises constituting grammar and vocabularies, correctly blended in the spoken form. Thus, each word is correctly used and each vocabulary correctly associated with the sentence structure and meaning.

Theoretical studies by Diller (1981), Lee and VanPatten (1995), and Jessup and Egbert (1996) measure the student’s abilities on the usage of English Language as a negotiation tool for practical applications, thus, making the learning process an active rather than passive activity. Drawing a parallel with the assumptions by Diller (1981), Lee and VanPatten (1995), and Jessup and Egbert (1996), web-based technologies provide learners with the ability to use their knowledge and experience of the newly acquired English Language to identify different situations and correctly associate each problem situation with the correct answer. Thus, the knowledge learnt in the process is associated with the mental or cognitive development in the usage of the language rather than the memorization of words. That makes it possible for the instructors to use software applications in the pursuit of the learning goals and objectives in addition to addressing the underlying needs of the student.

One of the proponents of web-based technologies as a foundational stone for inspiring confidence in the student taking English Language classes under the web-based program is (Gardner, 1982). Gardner’s (1982) theoretical proposition points out that a student who is confident in the learning process gains the foundation for the attainment of higher goals in the learning process. Thus, difficulties encountered in the learning process are taken as readily available opportunities to exploit and provide a richer learning experience rather than an obstacle to overcome. On the other hand, confidence in the adult learner studying English Language as a Second Language is inculcated in the learner based on the web-based program by enabling the student acquire excellent negotiation skills that enable them convey meaning effectively and efficiently. Thus, web-based students become more confident in the use of English Language as a second language, communicate effectively, and acquire the ability to realize their potential to communicate effectively at the early stages of the learning process.

Tremblay and Gardner (1995), Egbert and Jessup (1990), and Norris-Holt, (2001) consider motivational effects from the theoretical perspectives to be one of the critical factors that encourage learners towards pursuing a learning program. In the context of web-based technologies, different students have expressed their liking for web-based technology as a technology that motivates them into the attainment of language acquisition techniques that enables immediate acquisition of the language structure. It is important to evaluate the attitude of adult English Language learners to evaluate their perceptions and attitude toward computer assisted learning techniques.

Research Questions

The following research questions guided the research on adult learning in web-based ESL acquisition programs.

  1. Do web-based applications support the cognitive process in the acquisition of English as a second language?
  2. Do web-based applications used by adults in the acquisition of English as second languages provide learner centered motivation in ESL programs?
  3. What are adult perceptions in the use of web-based applications in the acquisition of English as a second language for adult learning in web-based ESL acquisition programs?
  4. What are the potential capabilities of web-based applications, such as the wiki system in ESL acquisition programs for adults?

Objectives

To attain the goal of the study, the following were underlying objectives for the study.

  1. To identify the theoretical perspectives of the cognition process as used in the acquisition of English as a second language on web-based applications.
  2. To evaluate the motivational support offered to the adult student using web-based applications for adults in ESL acquisition programs.
  3. To study the underlying principles of English Language acquisition for adults enrolled in ESL acquisition programs.
  4. To study the flexibility of applications in providing the student with the capability to study the lexicon of the language, which is one of the core competencies required for an adult in an ESL acquisition programs.

Literature Review

Introduction

Adults learning English as a second language (ESL) find it a cognitive process that builds on previous knowledge with its foundation on previous memory. The cognitive process is a different learning technique specifically for learners who take English as a second language. Among the group of people who use ESL for learning English as a second language are adults. One such are web-based programs that provides English Language learners (ELL) with a cognitive learning process that systematically uses articles and nouns combined systematically to allow learners acquire the knowledge intuitively, while ensuring the learner acquires the English Language vocabulary and syntax at the same time. In the context of the current study, that typically refers to as adult learning in web-based ESL acquisition programs. The program consists of, as pointed out by Pettito (2003), a structured input of learning English Language based on web-based technologies, which draws on the use of listening, reading, content vocabulary, writing, and studying skills. That is supported by an established trend showing a significant relationship that has been established between the numbers of English Language learners who correlate with the use of technology to learn English Language lessons in classes consisting of learners who speak different languages.

In the context of the use of technology to learn English, web-based programs use an incremental approach of difficulty associated with learning English Language as a second language, which uses a combination of sounds, pictures, and text in the language acquisition process. The context of the current research focuses on English Language learners who speak Spanish, Tagalog, Portuguese, Farsi, Arabic, Russian, and Hebrew. In theory, second languages inculcated into the student provide meaningful input that allows the learner to understand and use the language effectively. Krashen (1985) takes the argument further by focusing on the use of web-based technology techniques that associate pictures and visual aids with new words in the learning process to allow the learner capture the meaning of new words with clarity and without any ambiguity. However, as the learner progresses in the learning process, the aids used becomes more complex making the learning process reliant on communication of content-based on a previously learned language by associating the language with associated images and their meaning.

Thus, the process progressively becomes complex with memory playing the central role in the learning of the new language. In addition to that, the learner becomes acquainted with the language through a cognitive process that requires the use of pictures and other visual presentations that are made available using web-based technologies. Studies by Lee and VanPatten (1995) provide extensive discussions on listening as one of the foundational techniques web-based technologies use to enable learners of English Language acquire knowledge of the language. In the context of Lee and VanPatten (1995) theoretical assumptions, success in learning a foreign language begins with observations. Observations can be presented to the learner in computerized form. Linguistic observations provide the baseline for learners to understand any information the instructor intends to communicate to the student making the student acquire a sturdy foundation for knowledge. Typically, web-based technologies draw on the theoretical foundation of observations as the preliminary step toward the acquisition of English Language as a second language. In the context of the current study, web-based technologies provide learners of the English Language with many reading and spoken observation exercises constituting grammar and vocabularies, correctly blended in the spoken form. Thus, each word is correctly used and each vocabulary correctly associated with the sentence structure and meaning.

Theoretical studies by Diller (1981), Lee and VanPatten (1995), and Jessup and Egbert (1996) measure the student’s abilities on the usage of English Language as a negotiation tool for practical applications, thus, making the learning process an active rather than passive activity. Drawing a parallel with the assumptions by Diller (1981), Lee and VanPatten (1995), and Jessup and Egbert (1996), web-based technologies provide learners with the ability to use their knowledge and experience of the newly acquired English Language to identify different situations and correctly associate each problem situation with the correct answer. Thus, the knowledge learnt in the process is associated with the mental or cognitive development in the usage of the language rather than the memorization of words. That makes it possible for the instructors to use software applications in the pursuit of the learning goals and objectives in addition to addressing the underlying needs of the student.

Compelling studies provided by authorities in the acquisition of English as a second language on web-based applications show that exercises to play a significant role in the teaching and acquisition of English as a second language. Typically, research shows that exercises on web-based applications that focus learner’s attention aloe them to gain proficiency in the acquisition of specific linguistic elements. To attain that, features integrated into the applications provide the baseline for students to enhance their competence in the acquisition process. Among the features crucial to the successful use of the application, include voice presentations, features that support interaction between the students and the teachers, and features that allow the construction of sentences for exercising. In addition to that, web-based applications provide the features that allow the use of providing feedback to the student. Typically, feedback is an essential component in the accusation of English as a second language since the adult student is able to get corrective feedback and identify errors and corrective measures to take in the acquisition process. Typically, the correctness or incorrectness is associated is related to grammar, pronunciations, vocabularies, spellings, and other elements in the acquisition process.

One of the proponents of web-based technologies as a foundational stone for inspiring confidence in the student taking English Language classes under the web-based program is (Gardner, 1982). Gardner’s (1982) theoretical proposition points out that a student who is confident in the learning process gains the foundation for the attainment of higher goals in the learning process. Thus, difficulties encountered in the learning process are taken as readily available opportunities to exploit and provide a richer learning experience rather than an obstacle to overcome. On the other hand, confidence in the adult learner studying English Language as a Second Language is inculcated in the learner based on the web-based program by enabling the student acquire excellent negotiation skills that enable them convey meaning effectively and efficiently. Thus, web-based students become more confident in the use of English Language as a second language, communicate effectively, and acquire the ability to realize their potential to communicate effectively at the early stages of the learning process.

Tremblay and Gardner (1995), Egbert and Jessup (1990), and Norris-Holt, (2001) consider motivational effects from the theoretical perspectives to be one of the critical factors that encourage learners towards pursuing a learning program. In the context of web-based technologies, different students have expressed their liking for web-based technology as a technology that motivates them into the attainment of language acquisition techniques that enables immediate acquisition of the language structure. It is important to evaluate the attitude of adult English Language learners to evaluate their perceptions and attitude toward computer assisted learning techniques.

Evaluating Adult Perceptions

Coryell and Chlup (2007) have exhaustively discussed the use of technology, and in this case, web-based technologies as a method to improve English Language acquisitions. In Coryell and Chlup’s (2007) research, the focus of the research was in computer-assisted language learning, one of the techniques used in the learning of English as a second language. In addition to that, Coryell and Chlup (2007) focused on adult learners, which is reflects the context of the current paper. One critical issue that provides the rationale to borrow extensively from the learner is the direct experience Coryell and Chlup (2007) brings forth by interacting directly with adult learners as their instructor. Thus, the researcher attempts to answer questions on the learners’ attitude toward English language. That, Coryell and Chlup (2007) does by examining the student’s level of enjoyment of the language when learning using technology, in this case the computer and online technologies, and the level of usefulness of computers in enabling learning of English Language as a second language. In addition to that, Coryell and Chlup (2007) evaluate the student’s response to the category of software programs that they find most convenient to use in learning English.

The proliferation and use of computers in different fields including education and specifically in learning of foreign languages has significantly contributed to their use in teaching English Language as second language to adult learners. That is reinforced by the increasing use of internet to teach English as a second language. Graves (1987). in their research, have made significant findings in the use of internet technology as an approach to teach and offer learners the option of self-directed learning. That is viewed as a method that allows learners to link their learning outcomes with real life experiences, establishing a strong link between offering English Language lessons to adult learners and the use of web-based technologies. Dillon-Marable and Valentine (2006) reinforced these findings by asserting the need to incorporate computers in the curriculum for teaching English Language as a second language. In view of the latter, Nunan (1991) explicitly asserts, “no curriculum can claim to be truly learner-centered unless the learner’s subjective needs and perceptions relating to the process of learning are taken into account” (p.177).

However, a deviation from the latter argument and observations show that most of the usage of computers in the current learning environment is to capture student information, analyze the information, and present the analyzed information as an evaluative summary of the performance of the student. Thus, students and instructors are able to evaluate the learning progress. In addition to that, analyzed information helps instructors evaluate the adult learners’ progress and helps to facilitate how best to address the learners’ language needs (Little, 1991). While the argument at first looks straight forward and simple, research shows that that might not be conclusive of the whole situation. In many cases, wrong usage of the computer might not provide appropriate and reliable results. Statistical findings might not reflect the role and effectiveness of web-based programs in teaching English as a second language, especially for the adult population. Thus, a gap in knowledge on Csizér and Kormos’s (2008) findings appears on the use of computers to teach adults English Language as a Second Language appears.

Studies by Trahey & White (1993) who conducted extensive research in the appropriateness of the use of web-based technologies and computers to teach adults English Language as a Second Language identified a number of problems. One of the problems Trahey & White (1993) noticed in their research was the frequency with which adults skipped computer classes that incorporated computer language programs that provides quick advances in mastering English as a second language. Trahey & White (1993) was led to the conclusion that many students marginally applied their time in the use of computers, as a limitation in the use of web-based technologies to teach English as a second language. Thus, the study factors the latter as a limitation in the research of the use of web-based technologies to teach adult learners English as a second language. However, to draw on the usage of web-based technologies, the approach could involve two methods. One of the methods is to tutor centered and the other is based on the software tool used to teach English Language to the adult learners.

According to Coryell and Chlup (2007), the latter approach involves the use of computers and other web-based technologies as approaches to teach English to the adult learners and ensure successful completion of the teaching program. On the other hand, the use of a tool, which is, from the perspective of the learner, involves using software programs to learn English comes in the form of speaking, listening, reading, and grammar activities. These, according to Levy (1997) and Hubbard (2005) are viewed as learning exercises that adult are taken through.

Studies show exercises to play a significant role in the teaching and acquisition of English as a second language. Typically, research shows that exercises on web-based applications that focus learner’s attention aloe them to gain proficiency in the acquisition of specific linguistic elements. To attain that, features integrated into the applications provide the baseline for students to enhance their competence in the acquisition process. Among the features crucial to the successful use of the application, include voice presentations, features that support interaction between the students and the teachers, and features that allow the construction of sentences for exercising. In addition to that, web-based applications provide the features that allow the use of providing feedback to the student. Typically, feedback is an essential component in the accusation of English as a second language since the adult student is able to get corrective feedback and identify errors and corrective measures to take in the acquisition process. Typically, the correctness or incorrectness is associated is related to grammar, pronunciations, vocabularies, spellings, and other elements in the acquisition process.

On the other hand, Little (1991) acknowledges the important role-played by instructors in facilitating the teaching of English a second language to adults using web-based technologies. While MacWhinney (1997) and Little (1991) emphasize on web-based technologies and specifically the use of tools from the perspective of the internet as a platform to communicate, Little (1991) emphasizes on the use of technology as a method to connect traditional classroom instructional methods with real world genuine activities. Typically, the link between technology and real world activities provides the baseline for one to argue that the approach provides the motivational drive for the learner to use web-based technologies and allows the learner to choose whatever they want. Thus, the view observed by Coryell and Chlup (2007) on the use of technology by limiting it to the analysis and evaluation of the performance of the learner shows a striking gap. However, Little (1991) shows the link between technology and learning English as a second language and takes the research conducted by Coryell and Chlup (2007) to the next level. However, combined evaluations of both authors and others in similar standings provide a rich source of information on the use of web-based technologies in teaching English to adults as a second language. Another supporter of the success of web-based technologies and their use in teaching English as a second language to adults is (Dede, 2006). Dede (2006) affirms in their findings that web-based technologies provide a suitable environment for instructors and learners to experience face-to-face interactions like in a traditional class via communication links and the internet. On the other hand, Little (1991) offers strong criticism on the use of web-based technologies and in particular, web 2.0 technologies in teaching English to adults.

On the other hand, Graddol (2006) offers stringent criticism on the use of web-based technologies in teaching English to adults who take it as a second language. In their argument, Graddol (2006) asserts that different software products have failed to deliver desirable results and only views the use of these technologies as providing marginal benefits to the learner. Graddol’s (2006) criticism is much more on the use web 1.0 technology and its failure, and on that basis, projects failure for other web-based technologies in teaching English. Graddol (2006) bases the criticism on interfaces and functionalities of the software products in providing the ability to teach English by the adult instructor. Typically, Graddol (2006) confirms, in their research, that web-based technologies have failed to provide anything new in teaching English.

The concreteness of Graddol’s (2006) arguments can, however be disputed based on a wide range of findings. Bax (2003) criticizes findings by Graddol (2006) as having a narrow view of the use of computers on web-based technologies to teach English as a second language. Graddol’s (2006) criticism of the use of technology is based on time taken to develop and customize software products for use in teaching English as a second language. On that basis, Graddol (2006) asserts the outcome from the use of the software to be similar to when not using technology and at times even worse based on an analysis of the cost benefits using the software products to teach. However, Bax (2003) refutes the claim forwarded by Graddol (2006) and asserts otherwise by suggesting Graddol (2006) research to be limited in both meaning and application of the technologies. Beatty and Nunan (2004) support the contention by arguing that the perceptions by teachers and learners toward learning English using web-based technologies as they view whiteboards and books as teaching materials creates a positive perception in the learners of English.

In their argument, Beatty and Nunan (2004) support assert that viewing web-based technologies as artifacts that are used to impart knowledge in the learner, as a teaching aid is similar to using cultural tools and artifacts to teach the student. Bradshaw (2005) takes Beatty and Nunan’s (2004) study further asserts that web-based technologies take the teaching of English as a second language to the next level, based on availability of technology. Other contributions to the use of web-based technologies are the constant stream of information current generations get using media and related technologies. It is important to note the use of technology as a tool to teach English Language as a Second Language to adults gains further reinforcement form the historical perspective and use of different tools to impart knowledge. Form the historical perspective, Bradshaw (2005) reinforces that latter argument based on theoretical perspectives of imparting knowledge based on the phylogenetic development of the human being. Bradshaw (2005) argues form the perspective that human beings conducted teaching by the use of spoken language, which was followed by manuscripts and gradually computers. Thus, from the theoretical perspective of human development in teaching, it is critical that human beings appreciate the use of computers to teach English as a second language to adults making it important to examine in detail the acquisition of English Language as a second language.

The acquisition of English as a second language, according to Lightbown (2000) is a ten-step point process that teachers and learners have to be conversant. The ten-point process is a generalization, according to Lightbown, Spada and White (1993) that call for teachers and learners to be knowledgeable about. According to Lightbown (2000), the first step includes understanding that adults, just like adolescents and younger generations can learn English as a second language and still master the language. Lightbown, Spada and White (1993) assert that adult learners show striking similarities with children in the mistakes, they make when studying English for the first time as a second language. In addition to that, Lightbown, Spada and White (1993) show in their findings that even adults make mistakes that children make which appear to be related to the learner’s native language (Krashen, 1989). Lightbown, Spada and White (1993) takes the findings further to the next step by arguing that certain structures of the language have to be leant as a prerequisite to integrating them to the next structures.

Thus, a foundation is essential for continued learning of the language. Lightbown, Spada and White (1993) affirm a controversial third point as by arguing that practice does not make perfect. Typically, the latter assumption is contrary to the common belief that practice makes perfect. On the other hand, Lightbown, Spada and White (1993) confirm in their research that knowing the common rules of English Language as a Second Language without applying the language does not make one proficient in communicative interactions. Thus, teaching, according to Lightbown, Spada and White (1993) should follow a problem-based approach. The problem-based approach is discussed in the next section. In Lightbown, Spada and White’s (1993) studies, form which the ten point approaches have been generalized, findings show that correcting isolated errors does not guarantee one becoming effective in altering language related behavior. That generalization is further supported by Motteram’s (2009) study who argues that a paradigm shift, in the light of the imparting English Language knowledge in adults is essential.

In the light of Krashen (1989). argument on the need for a paradigm shift, Lightbown, Spada and White’s (1993) assumes in their ten point assumptions that adults have little motivation for learning English and tend to stop its acquisition before attaining the proficiency exemplified in native like mastery of their language. Thus, the mastery of English Language as a second language, according to Lightbown, Spada and White’s (1993) is based on practice and not a one-day exercise. Lightbown, Spada and White’s (1993) views learning of English Language by adult learners as a complex exercise that demands enormous input from the learner. Lightbown, Spada and White’s (1993) sums it all by asserting, “A learner’s ability to understand language in a meaningful context exceeds his/her ability to comprehend decontextualised language and to produce language of comparable complexity and accuracy” (Lightbown, Spada & White,1993).

A critical evaluation of the ten point items shows that adults, just like adolescents can learner English as a second language given time and opportunity. In addition to that, the findings lead to the conclusion that technology especially web-based technologies significantly enhance the acquisition of English as a second language. In their conclusion, Lightbown, Spada and White (1993) view web-based technologies from the perspective of their value as tools to impart knowledge of English Language as a Second Language in the adults. Thus, compelling a study of the value of web-based technologies in the following section.

Web-based Technologies

Odysseyware

Different web-based applications are in use today with the objective of teaching adults in ESL acquisition programs. These applications are integrated with different designs and features with the aim of endeavoring to meet the learning needs of the student. One of the applications that have successfully been used to teach adult students is ESL acquisition programs is the Odysseyware software application. The application is designed with a range of features that allows for an interactive environment between the student and the teacher during the acquisition and even after the acquisition sessions. It is worth noting that the application is designed to meet the learning needs of people from different learning backgrounds and demographic distributions. However, it is worth noting that despite the issues borne in mind when designing the application, research has shown that adults and children face the same difficulties when studying English as a Second Language in ESL acquisition programs. Therefore, the use of the application with adults in ESL acquisition programs provides an appropriate learning environment that addresses the needs of the adult student during the ESL acquisition process.

The founding principles that Odysseyware software is based includes a curriculum design that enables the adult student be engaged in the acquisition process and uncover new and essential ideas for the acquisition of the language. Typically, the curriculum design factors crucial issues that are essential to the acquisition process. In this case, the application is designed to enable the student identify the ultimate goal that underlies the acquisition of English as a Second Language and enable the student be in control of their learning process. That enables the adult student to identify and establish a strong connection between the learning outcome and their comprehension of the language, and practical application of the language in a real life environment. Thus, the application enables the adult student and the teacher establishes parameters for proficiency level of the student and the acquisition milestones. In addition to that, the application consists of features that allow the teacher and the student to share interactively information on activities, and other approaches to help enhance the English acquisition proficiency for the student in ESL acquisition programs.

To ensure efficient and effective lessons delivery, the application is designed with features that enable the teacher to identify the student’s skills base, learning style, their academic goals and objectives, the underlying motivation, instructional support activities, and the ability of the student to be in charge of their learning. It is with integrated features that the teacher is able to monitor the learning progress of the adult student based on observations, informative and summative task assessments. It is also possible to enables differentiated learning based on the English Language acquisition capabilities of the student tom meet their learning needs and goals. In addition to that, the application enables the teacher monitor the learning progress of the adult student, the mastery of the language, and the need to change the instructional delivery strategy to improve the performance of the student in ESL acquisition.

Different researchers have established research findings on the use of web-based technologies in the acquisition of English as a second language for adult learners. One such study concentrates on the value associated with web-based technologies in delivering English Language lessons to the adult learner. Krashen (1989) took the study on the value of web-based technologies further by attempting to distinguish between publication and participation as items to consider in evaluating the value of the technologies in relation to teaching English Language a as second language to adult learners. In their distinction, Rüschoff and Ritter (2001) consider web 1.0 technologies as platforms for delivering information to the adult learner. However, Rüschoff and Ritter (2001) report a number of shortfalls with web 1.0 technologies and propose that web 2.0 technologies are much more suited to teaching English to adults compared with web 1.0 technologies. In their studies, Rüschoff and Ritter (2001) affirm that web 2.0 technologies have a significant role in enabling users actively participate in creating information. That makes web 2.0 technologies interactive platforms for learners of English Language as a second language. Rüschoff and Ritter (2001) concluded their study by arguing that web 1.0 technologies had serious shortcomings that were overcome by introducing web 2.0 technologies. Rüschoff and Ritter (2001) therefore, agreed that web 2.0 technologies provided a platform for the language-learning paradigm by allowing adult learners to communicate and learn English Language in a meaningful way.

Rüschoff and Ritter (2001) affirmed the usefulness of web 2.0 technologies for teaching English as second language as opposed to web 1.0 technologies for teaching English to adult learners based on the superior functionality of web 2.0 technologies. These technologies were presented in the form of applications such as Authorware, Flash, Basic, among others. Typically, these applications provided web 2.0 services that were suited for teaching English to adults as a second language. Despite the value inherent in web 2.0 technologies to teach English as a second language to teach adults, other studies show the use of the classroom as one of the most reliable and effective way of teaching English to adults. It is also established that teaching English in the classroom with a connection to the internet provides the best and most effective use of technology. Teaching English with a connection to the internet leads to blended learning, which integrates face-to-face interactions in online learning. As pointed out earlier in this study, online web-based technologies offer students in this case teachers for the adult classes with the opportunity to add content and innovative teaching materials online. Different web-based applications can be used to provide and host the content provided by teachers in an interactive community of adult learners. Among the web-based applications is the wiki system. The Wiki system provides computer mediated communication on the internet platform and is used as one of the web-based technologies widely used to teach English Language a as second language. That makes it important to make an evaluative study of the entire wiki system for use to teach English as a second language to adult students.

Kovacic, Bubas and Zlatovic (2007) conducted investigations into the use of web-based applications, and in this case the wiki system to teach English as a second language. These studies concentrated web-based activities for studying English as a second language. In their findings, Kovacic, Bubas and Zlatovic (2007) showed that as much as web-based applications are critical in the acquisition of English language. It was important for instructors to consider the level of the learner’s motivation, the characteristics of web-based activities included in the adult course, the most appropriate level of interaction that suits the student best, the level and kind of questions administered to the students, and the impact of traditional teaching against web-based technologies.

An evaluation of the wiki system to teach English to adult learners as one of the examples of web-based techniques provided significant findings. These findings were restricted to the research that looked into the Wiki system and activities conducted on the system in support of teaching English as a second language.

According to Kovacic, Bubas and Zlatovic (2007), the wiki system is one of the web-based applications that have undergone radical innovations to address emerging issues in teaching English as a second language. Investigations by Kovacic, Bubas and Zlatovic (2007) show that the wiki application system has previously been used to teach historical lessons before it was innovated and configured to teach English as a second language.

The wiki application system integrates certain features that allow instructors to interact with the adult student in teaching English as a Second Language (ESL) to the adult student. These features allow the teacher and the student to conduct web-based activities in the teaching of English Language. These activities include web quest activities tailored to address English Language needs for adults in the technical profession, providing assistance in academic vocabulary lists, and teaching of English for IT professionals. As mentioned earlier on, the assumptions and findings by Krashen (1985), Lee and VanPatten (1995), Coryell and Chlup (2007), and Gardner (1982) are strongly supported by Kovacic, Bubas and Zlatovic (2007) who affirm that adult learners and teachers or instructors need to know. This includes the level of enjoyment and commitment to study English as a second language is based on a number of issues. These include the level of motivation for the student to study English language, the structure and type of web-based activities and the application being used to teach English as a second language, the kind of learning approach used to impart the knowledge on English language, and the number and type of activities involved in the learning and teaching process.

Kovacic, Bubas and Zlatovic (2007) have narrowed their perceptions and scope about the factors that influence and the affect teaching English as a second language to the adult learner, but seem to agree with other authors on the fundamental issues such as motivation towards learning English a s a second language. Kovacic, Bubas and Zlatovic (2007) seem to concentrate on comparing traditional teaching methods with web-based technologies based on the activities involved as instructional in the teaching of English language. However, Kovacic, Bubas and Zlatovic (2007) fail to consider the flexibility of using wiki as a web-based application.

An evaluative approach on the use of the wiki system to teach English as a second language shows the potentiality of the system as a tool to teach English Language as a Second Language. In addition to that, the flexibility and acceptability of the system with students depends entirely on the satisfaction, the adult students get form using the system to learn English, and the learning outcomes, which are based on the wiki activities. In their hypothesis, while studying Kovacic, Bubas and Zlatovic (2007) the wiki systems, they conducted an evaluation of a number of e-activities associated with the learning and teaching English as a second language intended to facilitate a number of teaching and learning activities. These activities included vocabulary learning and teaching outcomes, outcomes in the writing and reading skills, the ability to use the system to collaborate the learning and teaching of English Language by adult learners, and ability to coordinate peer-to-peer learning activities. In addition to that, the ability of the application to provide the flexibility, allow for critical thinking, and enhance problem-solving abilities in the student provided additional activities to evaluate the wiki system as a web-based application for teaching English as a second language to adults.

In their studies to evaluate the wiki system as a web-based tool to teach English Language as a Second Language to adults, Kovacic, Bubas and Zlatovic (2007) conducted their studies on two types of groups. The outcome showed a significant relationship between the wiki system and its activities and outcomes on teaching and learning English as a second language. Kovacic, Bubas and Zlatovic (2007) conducted the study by assigning a measurements scale on wiki based activities ranging from good to average to evaluate the system against outcomes on teaching and learning English as a second language. Their assumptions were based on the usefulness of the wiki system to teach and learn English, the level of interest the students had in using the wiki system to learn English, and the usability of the wiki applications in conducting the studies. Both the student and the teacher were involved in the study with their comparisons done with the traditional teaching and learning methods and out of class assignments.

To further establish the strength of the findings in the use of the wiki system to teach and learn English, Kovacic, Bubas and Zlatovic (2007) used the likert scale to evaluate and scale the responses in the usefulness, interestingness, and usability of the system. Kovacic, Bubas and Zlatovic (2007) narrowed their research by using small groups of participants in the e-activities offered on the wiki application platform.

In their studies, Kovacic, Bubas and Zlatovic (2007) established favorable findings on the use of web-based applications particularly the wiki system in offering support for e-activities. The average rating for the research was in the range of 2.9 – 3.2, which the researchers regarded as satisfactory. In their studies, the usefulness of the work with content, contributions of the wiki system to the teaching of English as a second language, usability of the wiki technology in the teaching and learning of English language, the level of interest, and motivation to teach English a as second language included critical activities that were evaluated during the study.

The number and type of e-activities activities considered by Kovacic, Bubas and Zlatovic (2007) included hotlist, brain writing, chain letter, Zip/unzip file, storyboard, and debating activities. Each of the adult learner participants performed similar tasks and provided feedback on their findings in the use of web-based tools in learning English. The first in the series of activities included students developing their own hotlist by conducting internet searches and creating a hotlist of web sites they considered valuable. The students categorized valuable web sites into those that provided textual information and content related to the course related topics of interest to the student and the content of the course the student was pursuing. Findings on the hotlist showed significant interest in the use of the wiki system to teach and learn English as a second language. In their studies, Kovacic, Bubas and Zlatovic (2007) established the rating to be 3.4, a strong rating of the wiki system by the adult students and the teachers.

The second approach in the list used to test the use of the wiki system and its flexibility in usage included the Zip/unzip file test element. Here, students were grouped into pairs and asked to write, with the assistance of the web-based tool, that is the wiki system, long sentences and rewrite the sentences into smaller sentences. The test included each pair of students posting their shortened fashion of sentences on the wiki system they were using. Another pair suing the same system was required to construct the original sentence and post it on the wiki system. Typically, that included zipping and unzipping the sentences. Finally, each of the pairs involved in the zipping, unzipping exercise posted their sentences on the wiki system, and the sentences were compared against the original sentences. In addition to that, the learners were required to post their evaluation of the wiki system in relation to the zipping and unzipping exercise. Significant findings were established during the study. One of the critical findings showed the level of satisfaction with the system to lie between 3.5 and 3.9 on the likert scale. In conclusion, the rating was considered good and reliable.

Brainwriting was the third evaluation approach used to evaluate the wiki system. Brainwriting included participants experimenting with their level of creativity by creating a number of alternative solutions to a problem based on course related content on the wiki systems (Philp, 2003). Then, the teachers and learners evaluate the solutions by evaluating the solutions sent by either groups involved in the study, just like in the arrangement in the first case involving zip and unzip file approaches. The brainwriting technique allows adult learners to interact by sending their problems and solutions to other pairs of students on the system. The solutions are evaluated against the problems and the actual solutions to the problems. Each of the pairs involved in learning English based in the wiki system sends problems and possible solutions to other pairs in a sequence (Philp, 2003). Finally, the solutions and problems are evaluated against a long list of solutions. Then, the problems and their solutions are posted on the wiki system. Each of the adult learners and participants are then allowed to evaluate the entire process by assigning numerical values against their perceptions. Findings showed a significant positive rating for the wiki system, with their usefulness evaluated at an average of 3.8 and the level of interest on the wiki system as 4.1 (Oliver, 2000).

Kovacic, Bubas and Zlatovic (2007) continued their study by considering the chain letter technique on the use of wiki system. In this case, the level of usefulness of the wiki system in its usage in teaching and learning English as a second language and the level of interest in the web-based system were evaluated. Kovacic, Bubas and Zlatovic (2007) considered the chain letter technique that included students evaluating and reviewing the content materials related to teaching English a s a second language for each course related topics. This was among the e-activities that Kovacic, Bubas and Zlatovic (2007) considered critical in evaluating responses based on review questions administered on the student. To evaluate the wiki system effectively based on the chain letter technique, a number of participants were recruited into the exercise. Each of the participants was required to respond to questions posted to them through an email, and then the participants using the wiki system could provide answers to the posted questions based on the curse content.

Then, the participants were required to generate their own questions and post them to the next group of participants. The new questions written by the first group were based on the course content and were answered by another group in the series of participants within 48 hours. Different wiki pages were used to post the answers before the teacher or instructor using the wiki system evaluated them. This allowed all participants to post their answers and questions on the wiki system without any interference from another group. Each of the groups participating in the system were then allowed to view the questions and responses posted by the different groups as a creative activity. In response to the creative activities, Kovacic, Bubas and Zlatovic (2007) concluded that the learners and teachers valued the wiki system at 3.6 for its usefulness and 4.1 on its level of interest on the likert scale. The researchers were led to the conclusion that the wiki system was a critical tool in teaching and learning of English based on its usefulness and level of interest. In addition to that, the level of interest was overwhelmingly significant.

To evaluate the wiki system as a web-based tool as an approach to teach English Language as a second language, Kovacic, Bubas and Zlatovic (2007) considered debating as one of the factors to evaluate the system. Debating required all students in the learning process to participate in a virtual debate. Each of the participants was required to participate in a controversial debate. Each of the participants was required to debate in a team. There were two teams in the virtual debating platform. One team was in the proposition side while the other was in the opposition team. Each of the teams had a specific role to play. Either of the teams were in the pro or contra positions. The teams’ arguments were then posted on the wiki pages for revaluation purposes. Then, the usefulness and level of interest of the use of the technique on the wiki systems were assigned numerical values for the purpose of evaluation. The number of participants was also noted in the study. Findings showed the level of interest to be 3.8 and the level of usefulness to be 3.5 on the likert scale. Thus, the conclusion was that the wiki systems had significant value in teaching English as a second language for the adult learners.

The last approach used to evaluate the wiki system was the use of storyboard. Storyboard was an e-activity that required adult learners to respond and offer a solution to a problem in writing to a complain letter. Each of the students were required to provide a specific response to a complain letter posted on the wiki system by properly addressing the problem in written English. Colleagues using the wiki system as a web-based system to learn English as a second language are the ones to post the problem letter. The problem should focus on the content of the course and should contain every part of a formal letter. The complaint letter is part of the learning process on the wiki system and presented in a tutorial to the adult students. Fourteen participants provided their response on their evaluation of the wiki system. The level of interest was 3.8 and the level of usefulness scored an average of 3.8 on the likert scale. In conclusion, the researchers found the wiki system useful in teaching English as a second language.

Kovacic, Bubas and Zlatovic (2007) were able conclude that the wiki system as one of the web-based applications had a significant potential in its applicability to teach English as a second language. In addition to that, the system had the potential of enabling adult learners in the acquisition of English Language skills as a second language. Kovacic, Bubas and Zlatovic (2007) concluded that the wiki system significantly contributed to the acquisition of vocabularies, the development of writing skills, and the e-activities provided a platform for students to grow in their critical thinking skills in the use of English Language as a second language. In addition to that, the wiki application provided a platform for adequate feedback from students and enhanced the growth of the adult student in studying and learning of English as a second language.

While the wiki system provided a platform to evaluate a number of techniques to evaluate the web-based applications to teach and learn English as a second language to the adults, it is critical to examine the importance of using web-based applications such as wiki systems to minimize a number of errors encountered during the teaching and learning processes. These include lexical errors that adult learners experience in the learning process when using web-based technologies. Thus, the following section discusses lexical errors, their sources, and methods that web-based technologies adopt to overcome lexical errors in adult English Language learners.

Wimba Voice Tools

One of the elements that enable the adult learner to acquire English as a second language, as mentioned elsewhere in the paper is speech. One of the web-based application technologies used in the Wimba Voice Tools. That calls for the need to examine the use of web-based application by examining the attitude developed by the student toward the use of the technologies, the effectiveness of the application in enabling the student become proficient and effective listening and speaking activities. To answer the research questions, Stonebrink (2008) focused on the type of corrective feedback provided by the web-based application for adult learners enrolled in ESL classes. One of the strategies used to arrive at the conclusion on the use of web-based applications was quantitative and quantitative data analysis.

Wimba Voice Tools is a web-based application that adult students have used to study English as a second language. The application provides features that which are integrated into the application to provide users with the ability to interact with their teachers through the system. The design incorporates features that offer instructional support for the student by allowing interaction and exchange of information between the teacher and the student. Each of the features also allows the student to set goals and identify specific learning outcomes after each English Language acquisition activity. Among the goals set by the student and the teacher, include speaking and listening aimed at improving the student’s conversational capabilities. Each of the activities focuses on a specific topic and function with expected outcomes. The topics can be on talking about a certain event, and the function can be discussing about a giving direction, each student is required to participate in the event using features integrated into the web-based application. Each of the learning outcomes exemplifies what entails successful conversational capabilities, which are clearly defined underlying assumptions.

Research shows that good conversational capabilities provide the student with the ability to master and have control over the cultural paralinguistic norms. These include body language, turning and speaking, opening and closing, and feedback. Therefore, the student is able, by using the web-based application to speak and use English Language elements correctly. These elements include grammar, usage of vocabulary, and pronunciation. As mentioned elsewhere, the web-based application is used to enable student become excellent speakers of the English Language and enable them improve in that area.

Observations and experience indicate that the web-based application provides paralinguistic and linguistic elements that enable the adult student to enhance their proficiency in the language. That is based on the argument that English Language is highly structured and best practices require that the building blocks approach be employed in teaching English Language as a second language. One of the critical elements that distinguish the learner’s abilities includes the ability to use features that allow the student to enable the student to focus attention individual paralinguistic and linguistic elements. These features, then, allow the student to link or create a connection between the elements, which culminates in carrying out the required task. One of the methods widely applauded in the study of English Language as a Second Language is the use of constructivist approach. The Wimba Voice Tools application provides the ability for the student and the teacher to provide instructions to the student based on the constructivist approach. Therefore, it is important to examine the constructivist approach in the context of the Wimba voice tools application.

The Web 2.0 Environment

The web 2.0 learning environment is one of the application environments that adult learners use in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. Therefore, there is a need to conduct an evaluation and review of the web 2.0 learning environment to determine the kind of knowledge, communication, and learning provided in the environment. In addition to that, the section examines the functional requirements to be met to enable the acquisition of English Language a as second language by the adult student, and the effect of the ever changing technologies that affect the acquisition of English Language as a second language.

The concept of web-based applications in the acquisition of English as a second language has made the acquisition of English Language on the internet more flexible for the adult student. However, the ever changing technologies has had an impact that researchers contend allows learners to aggregate whatever has been learnt into knowledge on the use of English Language as a second language. Further arguments put it that web-based applications including the web 2.0 tools is a collection of tools that provide different functionalities for their use in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. Downes (2007), Attwell (2007), Wagner (2006) and van Harmelen (2006) place a lot of emphasis on the value of web-based applications as demonstrated in the statement “the fostering of social networks and communities, the emphasis on creation rather than consumption, and the decentralization of content and control” (Harmelen, 2006).

Typically, therefore, the statement asserts that learning takes the trend of decentralized learning, enabling different adult students conduct their studies in an environment that leads to self-productivity, and other expected learning outcomes with underlying theories on constructivism and connectivism. Thus, the use web-based technologies and in particular web 2.0 technologies provide an environment for the adult student to foster their growth based on the characteristics of the constructivism theory. The constructivism theory is a perspective that is viewed as being constructive, social, based on situational processes, self-organized, and active (Erpenbeck & Sauter, 2007). This argument about web-based applications draws their support from the learning and usage trends established in the use of web-based applications in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. These include increased activity in the use of web-based applications in the acquisition of English Language as a second language, improved levels of personal productivity, and provides an environment for self-governing. Other trends observed in the use of web-based applications enable networking or learners, therefore, enabling interactivity, not only between the teacher and the students, but also between the adult students. Thus, the web-based applications especially web 2.0 technologies provide an enabling environment to progress the student toward the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language in ESL acquisition programs.

Another perspective of the web 2.0 technologies introduced by Siemens (2004) is the significance of the web 2.0 technologies in relation to connectivism. Connectivism is a learning theory that draws on distributed learning, which falls under the constructivism theory. Kerr (2007) and Kop and Hill (2008) regard the connectivism theory as a theory that considers new approaches of learning, which, among them is the web 2.0 technologies. That is also based on the philosophies of education that regard connectivism and one of the constructivism theories that draws on the use of technologies such as web-based applications in the acquisition of English as a second language by adults.

Web 2.0 Technologies

Downes (2007), one of the researchers into the use of web-based applications discussed in detail the fundamental concept of learning networks. That is also in support of the previous section, which theorizes on network learning as one of the learning approaches supported on web 2.0 technologies. One of the apt models proposed by Downes (2007) in the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language was the learning networks. As already mentioned above, learning networks provide an environment for learners and teachers to develop their knowledge and put it on a shared platform for others to evaluate and use. The information stored in these networks is regarded as an open ecology of books and other resource materials that adults use in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. However, to understand the use of web 2.0 technologies in ESL, it is important to examine the characteristics inherent in these a[applications that adult learners and their instructors find valuable during the language acquisition and teaching process. However, it is important to note beforehand the characteristics of web 2.0 technologies bear strong similarities to the factors that English Language acquisition as a second language.

One characteristic Kerres (2007) identifies is openness. Openness, according to Kerres (2007) is an attribute that considers that learning should not be done in isolation, but a learning portal. A learning portal, according to Kerres (2007) provides an environment that enables acquisition of English Language as a Second Language using readily available quality learning materials. The concept of a portal is embedded in web-based applications, therefore, providing a link between the nodes with quality materials used in the acquisition of English as a second language. Another characteristic of web 2.0 technologies are the features that support active participation of the adult learner. This is where teachers or instructors engaged in ESL classes contribute toward the creation of the web-based application here a learner contributes by integrating applications known to them to enhance the features of the system. That is also in view of the approaches discussed elsewhere in the paper where learners play a critical role in making inputs into the system. According to Kerres (2007), both the teacher and the student create and work in a learning community, which shares the web-based application platform. The community benefits from the contributions made by the student and the teachers. In that environment, users enjoy the flexibility of using different tools that reflect their needs and enables them introduce other persons into the use of the applications. An additional feature is the learning units that are structured to reflect the learning environment (Kerres, 2007).

Motivation is viewed as the second most significant component characterizing the web 2.0technolgies. According to Kerres (2007) and other researchers mentioned elsewhere in this paper, the web 2.0 technology should provide an environment that allows individual engagement of every learner in the community of learners. In addition to that, the learning environments provided by the web-based applications provide and foster a community of learners. This is where teachers and students introduce one to each other. Another motivational element that characterizes the web 2.0 technology application is enabling teachers show their presence in the learning environment. The web 2.0 technologies provide an appropriate platform for teachers to deliver learning materials to the student, enables them make contributions to the student, and enables active engagement of teachers in active discussions with their students. The participations, suggestions, and active feedback provides additional motivation for the ESL adult student to develop knowledge in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. Another characteristic of the web 2.0 technology is ability to provide the student and the teacher with the capacity to monitor, evaluate, and provide feedback on the progress of the student. In this case, according to studies by Kerres (2007), teachers are able to share learning activities while making a progress trace of their adult student. To encourage participation and growth of the student in ESL language acquisition, teachers continuously assess the student and provide appropriate feedback. The kind of feedback and the effects feedback has in the student are discussed elsewhere in the paper. However, to make the web 2.0 application useful to both the teacher and the student, it should fulfill certain functional requirements, that are discussed in the subsequent section.

Functional Components of Web 2.0 Environment

The functional requirements that a web 2.0 application has to meet to qualify for use in the teaching and acquisition of English Language as a Second Language is established on the on software experience, media competence, and learning objectives. One of the applications that provide the functionalities is the wiki application system. Wiki has an integrated central module that focuses on learner needs and adaptability to using web-based applications. Leaners using the Wiki web-based application find it easy and flexible to use as it is easy to install and configure with little or no assistance. The application also provides a high degree of navigability and structure and is possible to tag the application and configure it to suit one’s own learner needs. Below is a diagrammatic representation of an installed and ready to use wiki system. Diagram 1.

According to the diagram, a number of integrated modules provide the flexibility and ability to meet predetermined objectives and goals. That is because the web 2.0 application consists of functionalities that are underlined below. One of the functionalities provided by the application to assist adults in the use of the web-based technology in the acquisition of English language, as a second language is learning center. According to Kerres (2006), the learning center is accessible through the RSS feeds and is implemented on the MediaWiki platform.

The application provides the knowledge base as the second feature. The knowledge base is a center of resources in the form of text, audio files, and other audio visual aids that help adults in the acquisition of English as a second language. Tagging is the main technique used in indexing the metadata contained in the system. Metadata is defined as data about data. It is commonly agreed upon the community of users that knowledge access from the knowledge base supports the concept of networking, which is a critical component in the acquisition of English Language a as second language. That is because networking creates a community of leaners and teachers. On the other hand, one is able to infer that networking on the platform creates a community of users who get informed about the knowledge stores in their network of nodes.

Functional Components of Web 2.0 Environment

Another feature that critically characterizes the wiki web-based application used in the ESL adult class is the learning journal. The learning journal is a critical component of the ESL class that is used to raise awareness and interesting events about the thematic areas without a need to prescribe up to the standards and requirements for working in a knowledge center. That in itself is the basis for announcing any links that have been discovered. It also provides the teacher with the capability to upload and insert content such as video contributions and text that is valuable in the teaching of adults English as a second language. This feature is implemented using the WordPress 2.3 application.

Kerres, (2006) provides additional components that are integral to the wiki system, which is a web-based application that is used by adults in the acquisition of English as a second language to include an alerting service. An alerting service provides updates about different information providers and the type of information being provided. It is however, critical to note that thematic areas at this point play a significant role in filtering update information on a regular basis. The output from the procedures used in thematic areas in filtering information are then passed on to different and appropriate areas which depends on interest and specific requirements. RSS is used to attain the above functionalities with its integrative mechanisms that the procedures are passed on to appropriate areas. From the above studies, the learning environment fostered is a blended learning environment. A blended learning environment is enabled on web-based applications as discussed below.

Implementation of the Wiki-Web-Based Application

To entirely capture the benefits associated with the use of web-based applications such as the wiki system, it is critical to consider the functional areas of the system that supports teachers in offering instructions to the student, and the student in the use of the web-based applications. Typically, the wiki systems falls into web 2.0 application programs that with four major functional areas. The functional areas include learning activities supported on the system, roles of teachers or instructors, learning matters that are used to deliver instructions to the students, and the mediawiki as a learning center. Each of the functional areas plays a critical role in the delivery of instructions to the adult students taking ESL acquisition programs. That makes it important to evaluate the each of the functional components and their contributions to adult learning in web-based ESL acquisition programs.

Wiki Learning Matter

One of the functional characteristics of the wiki application is a rich repository of learning materials freely accessible on the internet platform. Typically, the learning materials include metadata that can be accessed online, full text materials that can also be accessed on other web-based application, and audiovisual materials to enhance the acquisition and teaching of English as a Second Language. According to Reinhold and Abawi, (2006) the wiki system provides an interoperable environment on which many of the media and other applications can run for the delivery of instructions to the adult student. Thus, leading to the conclusion that the wiki system is not limited to display text documents only, but can be used as a platform for different media used in the delivery of instructions and content. Typically, the wiki system is flexible and provides a learning environment that enables the adult student in web-based English Language Acquisition programs learn the language to meet one’s own learning goals.

A critical evaluation of the wiki system shows that the application provides images, reports, learning tasks and their solutions, and graphical presentations by learners. Other learning items presented on the wiki system include tests carried out on specific projects conducted by students and items specifically related to a specific field.

On the other hand, the wiki system allows the student to contribute to the learning process while contributing content hosted on the application. However, the interactive environment provided on the wiki system for the student to contribute content is distinctive. Typically, the content is categorized into the content contributed by the student and the content provided on the web-based application by the teachers. Thus, the application provides an element of student focused learning through static and dynamic content provided on the web-based application. Static content constitutes the content that is accessible externally while dynamic content is accessible on the wiki application enabling corroborative learning that can always be modified though web-based means.

The wiki system provides a range of learning activities for the adult student in ESL acquisition programs. These include the ability to provide an enabling environment for knowledge acquisition. Knowledge acquisition supported on the wiki applications allows the adult student to practice thematic learning activities, which relate to simple to complex life activities, to enable the adult learners in ESL acquisition program construct their own knowledge base. However, it is possible for users to learn from each other based on the interactive nature of the application’s environment. In addition to that, the applications define different roles for the teacher and the adult student in the learning environment.

It is the role of the student to identify difficult tasks, and complex situations, which are related to the real life environment and where the adult student intends to apply the English Language to communicate. Once the environment and the tasks have been identified, the student is able to construct the knowledge required in the acquisition process. The application is a student focused learning environment that requires students to identify and take different roles and tasks that they have identified. The wiki application provides an environment that allows a participative approach to learning in the acquisition of English as a second language. The application provides an environment that allows learners to reflect on their learning objectives and evaluate their progress in the acquisition of English as a second language. The self-evaluation process is an important component in the learning acquisition process and enables the student to transfer their English Language skills into the real life environment to solve real life problems. On the other hand, the application provides an enabling environment for teachers engaged in ESL acquisition programs as an instructional mode of delivery.

The application provides teachers with an enabling environment to play the role of coaches and moderators in the English language acquisition programs. Typically, the teacher is able to differentiate between the needs of different learners, their effectiveness, their rate of development, and their weaknesses and respond according to the diverse needs of the students. Therefore, the teacher provides supportive services for the student geared toward the “target-group specific balance between the organizing support offered by the teacher and the autonomy of the students” (Erpenbeck & Sauter, 2007).

The wiki-based application provides a learning environment with the underlying learning theories forming the foundation of the application and its interactive environment. One of the theories supported on the application is the constructivist theory. Based on the theory, students on the wiki application are able to regulate themselves in an explorative manner, thus providing the student with a significant amount of autonomy while the teacher coaches the student toward the successful attainment of their learning goals and objectives in the acquisition process. Typically, the application allows the teacher to provide a clear direction and learning outcomes with a clear structure of the learning tasks and expected outcomes. Therefore, it is crucial to note that the student and the teacher have distinct roles to play in the acquisition process. Reinhold and Abawi (2006) assert that the teacher uses the wiki application for the assessment of the student while ensuring their intervention in the evaluation process. On the other hand, teachers provide, in their role as coaches, typical examples and other materials for starters in the acquisition of English as a Second Language. Examples and guidance provided by the teacher especially for beginners is supportive for beginners and provides an environment that enables the student reproduce what has been learnt precisely and with clarity. In addition to that, the application provides an environment for instructing students using graphical materials and other presentations to captivate the mind of the student with interest.

Facts established show that the wiki-based application provides the student and the teacher with the ability to interact by the teacher providing feedback to the student. It is crucial to note that most applications used for web-based learning provide features, just like the wiki application, features to provide feedback to the student. The wiki application provides a number of features that support different types of learning approaches such as blended learning.

Blended Learning

To attain the main goal and objective of web-based studies for adult learning in web-based ESL acquisition programs, educators have identified blended learning as one of the approaches that support web-based applications in the acquisition of English as a Second Language (ESL). Different researchers have agreed on a common definition of blended learning. “Blended learning involves increasing flexibility: options for what, how, when, and with whom they participate in the course” (Collis, 2005). However, another definition of blended learning is “combining online delivery of educational content with the best features of classroom interaction and live instruction to personalize learning, allow thoughtful reflection, and differentiate instruction from student-to-student across a diverse group of learners”( Watson, 2008). Both definitions focus on the use of appropriate use of

Blended learning is a method of instructing learners based on a combination of online and face-to-face instructional methods. This kind of learning and delivering instructions to the student are viewed as one of the most rapidly growing means of teaching students in different learning environments with different student needs. The teacher uses the method and the student to deliver instructions in a web-based platform. In this case, therefore, learning is extended beyond the classroom where face-to-face methods of delivering instructions are done.

The growth of this kind of instructional method is facilitated by the evolving pedagogy that has increasingly evolved the teacher’s role to mentoring the student, and use of instructions for different learners. Other researchers agree that increased flexibility in the delivery f instructions to the student adds to the use of the method in instructional delivery. Personalized forms of learning especially as is the ESL classes for adults add to the motivating factors fostering the use of the method. However, one of the key and significant component that has facilitated the growth of this kind of learning is the use of technology, particularly web-based applications in delivering instructions to the learner. In this case, the method is generally applied across all types of students irrespective of their age. Nonetheless, it is a significant component in the acquisition of English Language for adults using web technologies.

One of the underlying reasons for educators supporting the use of blended learning on web-based applications is the role these applications play in providing resources in a networked learning environment, and the possibility of increasing in capacity with little or insignificant rise in costs.. In addition to that, students want to be in control of their learning process, a requirement that addresses the needs of adult students enrolled in online classes. Adults could want a learning environment that allows them to be in charge of their learning process, a learning environment that enables them acquire learning materials and instructions in a flexible environment. That adds value to the use of web-based applications in the acquisition of English as a second language. On the other hand, teachers who conduct their lessons using web-based applications find the online teaching environment to flexible and able to provide an environment that enables the teachers address the learning challenges that adult students experience in the acquisition of English a second language. Therefore, blended learning combines the best of face-to-face instructions with advances in technology to address the challenges students, in this case adult students experience in the acquisti0in of English Language as a second language. To implement effectively blended learning, a continuum of blended learning models integrated into web-based applications provide the flexibility and solutions that teachers and adult students experience in the English Language acquisition process.

Blended Learning
Figure 1.

The models are illustrated as shown above. Among the model options is for the student and the teacher to be fully engaged online with the additional option of face-to-face interactions. However, other models have variations to the first model. The second model requires that the teacher and the student be fully engaged online with some options to attend classroom instructions delivery methods in a face-to-face engagement. The classroom engagement environment can consist of a computer laboratory where other applications supported on web-based programs can be found. However, other variations such as the third model provide additional options where students meet in the classroom every day, but also conduct classes in the computer labs. Another model used for blended learning the one that uses online instructional components blended into the classroom-learning environment. The fifth model is where engagement in the use of web-based applications is not limited in any way, but some classroom engagements are included in the English Language acquisition process. However, each of the models can be tailored to address different adult students under different learning environments. Thus, blended learning seems to be changing the role of teachers engaged in ESL classes.

As mentioned elsewhere, blended learning is used to address different learning environments and challenges that come with the ESL adult teaching. In addition to that, blended learning seems to come with a number of underlying benefits driving its use in adult ESL classes. Among the benefits realized from the use of blended learning, includes, according to Reinhold and Abawi (2006):

The ability for schools to maintain their central role in managing a student’s educational process and personalizing instruction;

  • Providing curriculum developers and teachers the flexibility to address standards and maintain curriculum fidelity while integrating digital content and learning experiences that better engage 21st century learners; and
  • Giving teachers valuable experiences in using technology effectively in their professional development courses, preparing them to use blended models creatively and strategically as this approach becomes more and more prevalent in the classroom. p. 23

One of the critical success factors characterizing blended learning is efficacy. According to research studies, efficacy is reflected in student support and improved learning outcomes. Studies have shown that blended learning is better than face-to-face interactions that is also supported in recent studies conducted to determine the efficacy of using web-based applications in the acquisition of English as a second language. One of the reports that shows the success of web-based application sis best illustrated in the statement which asserts, “blended learning is helping the district address critical objectives for integrating 21st century skills into core subject instruction”. According to the study, which is applicable in the acquisition of English as a second language, different categories of students were trained in the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language using the blended learning program with outstanding results. Results showed that students performed better with blended learning than when exposed face-to-face classroom interactions only.

However, it was not4ed in the studies that instructions that were delivered using web-based applications and face-to-face interaction provided better results. In addition to that, the use of blended learning could address different challenges that students and teachers experienced in the ESL acquisition. That added to the benefits associated with blended learning and web-based applications for adult students and teachers as well. It was also realized that when adult students were provided with the authority to be in control of their learning, blended learning based on web-based applications provided an ideal environment for the adults to conduct their studies. The research further established teacher effectiveness as one of the benefits associated with blended learning in ESL classes for adult students. It further established that instructional methods teachers used to teach the adult students in the second language acquisition were transformed when associated with blended learning on web-based applications. It was also reported that web-based applications when applied as an instructional platforms for second language acquisition had a strong positive effect compared with face-to-face learning. Other findings showed that the use of web-based applications with blended learning provided English Language teachers with the opportunity to be change agents in the English Language acquisition environments.

Based on the above discussions, blended learning is one of the strategies used for web-based applications in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. However, the typical implementation of web-based applications in the acquisition of English Language a as second language is based on the functionalities associated with the systems. One such is the wiki system with its functionalities. That is concerning the functional areas of the wiki system, which is one of the web-based applications used in the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language by adult students.

Lexical Errors

Lexical errors are encountered in the first phases of learning and teaching English to adults taking English as second language. That makes it important for adult learners to learn the use of words correctly, enabling adults to acquire lexical competence in the use of English language. However, different authors provide different definitions and views about lexical errors that a learner of English Language as a Second Language experiences. Other authors such as Ellis (1995) view lexical errors from the perspective of components and the learning process that allows the learner to enter any new word in the mental lexicon. Therefore, to enter a new word into the mental lexicon involves the learning process. However, it is during the learning process that one develops lexicon errors.

Ellis (1995) affirms that lexical errors are introduced into the mind of the English Language learner when each element in the learning process is not properly learnt and used to enhance one’s vocabulary of words. Ellis (1995) continues to argue that when the learner skips or does not readily comprehend the steps involved in capturing and retaining a word in the mental lexicon, a possibility develops of developing a lexical error. Ellis (1995) views the main steps involved in developing lexical competence to avoid lexical errors to include listening to a word, reading the word presented textually, examining and recognizing the orthographic pattern in the word, pronouncing the word, and writing the word again in textual form. Ellis (1995) confirms that when a new learner examines and develops a mental picture of the orthographic pattern in a word, then one is able to use the pattern to comprehend the syntactic properties of the word. One is able to understand and establish a pattern of the lexical relationships of the word and other words, the sematic properties in the word, and the referential properties in the word. However, failure, according to Ellis (1995), to adhere to the rules and procedures is bound to make the learner into developing a number of lexical errors in the mental lexicon.

Other authors have dwelled on the subject of lexical errors and have attempted to determine the actual cause of lexical errors. Jiménez (2002) recognizes the fact that lexical errors can be overcome if the learner becomes competent in contextual knowledge of the use of words and asserts that when any of the items in contextual learning and competence is skipped, then the learner develops lexical errors. Jiménez (2002) mentions in their research that contextual knowledge in the use of words implies knowing the morphology, phonology, syntax, and semantics of the words in the linguistic dimension. Jiménez (2002) continues to argue that knowing a word in the social linguistic dimension includes recognizing the specific word and using the word in a connective manner with other words. Jiménez (2002) asserts in the study that the learnability of a word also has significant contribution to the learner developing lexical errors if the word is difficult to learn in the pedagogical dimension. Jiménez (2002) and Ellis (1995) agree on different issues related to lexical errors that teachers of English using web-based technologies have to bear in mind when teaching adults the English Language as a second language. One can analytically agree that both authors Jiménez (2002) and Ellis (1995) have simply rephrased their findings and agree on common issues that introduce lexical errors in the mental lexicon of the learner.

Both native and non-native instructors regard lexical errors, according to studies by Faerch and Kasper (1983) as serious mistakes. These errors provide the opportunities for adult learners of English as second language to improve their writing skills of the language since they include vocabulary exercises. In their studies, Faerch and Kasper (1983) established the fact that instructors of English Language as a Second Language use it to grade students and when a learner show a lot of lexical errors, is bound to have a poor grade at the end of the course. Therefore, Faerch and Kasper (1983) assert that lexical errors are used to evaluate the English Language proficiency of the adult student and evaluate their proficiency in the use of vocabularies, originality of their work, and frequency, and variations in their work when evaluating their writing, reading, and speaking skills in English Language as a second language.

Other authors regard lexical errors as one of the best components that enable learners to study and learn English effectively as a second language. According to research reports by Biber, Johansson, Leech, Conrad, and Finegan (1999) web-based applications use lexical bundles frequently found within text and constitute discernible functions within any lexical mind. It is therefore important to consider whatever constitutes lexical errors to comprehend fully how web base applications provide methods to solve the problem with adult English learners as a second language.

As mentioned above, a number of authors agree that lexical errors significantly contribute to the teaching and learning of English Language as a Second Language by adults using web-based applications. That is in opposition to findings established by Faerch and Kasper (1983) who regard lexical errors as unimportant for non-native speakers, but acts as a communication distractor for non-native speakers of English language. In their argument, Faerch and Kasper (1983) dispute the belief that grammatical accuracy is important when an individual is engaged in a communication with another. Faerch and Kasper (1983) support their argument with the fact that grammatical correctness and intelligibility are not closely related, but support the fact that lexical errors significantly contribute to the way an adult learning English as a second language communicates in English. Therefore, lexical errors find their importance in the way a learner transmits information and its meaning depending on the type of lexical error.

One important point about lexical errors is that they assist learners in their acquisition of English Language as a Second Language and especially in the acquisition and proper use of vocabularies, and acquisition, with time in the learning and teaching process, the proficiency of using English as the second language. In addition to that, adult learners of English Language as a Second Language have the opportunity to study lexical errors seriously and attach significant importance to them, so that in the learning process, one is able to avoid them as much as possible to become proficiency in the use of the language. That further stimulates the need to study lexical error seriously and attempt, in the part of the student, to avoid the lexical errors as much as possible. However, applications, or web-based applications provide the support, as mentioned elsewhere in the paper, for the instructor teaching English as a second language and adult learners taking English as a second language to learn and avoid such errors ad become proficient in the use of the language. Before the study focuses on computer supported teaching of such errors, it is critical to focus on teaching lexical explicit to adult learners.

Lexical Explicit Teaching to Adult Learners

The teaching of English Language as a Second Language requires that instructors are aware of the meaning of knowing a word, and the learning strategies involving web-based applications that learners and teachers of English Language as a Second Language use to attain their goal. Teachers of English Language as a Second Language should know when facing vocabularies and the use of vocabularies and the support such vocabularies provide such that activities involving the use of web-based applications that enable learners minimize the level and number of lexical errors in their studies and use of the language. The support offered to the learner on web-based applications allows the learner to enhance and enlarge their mental lexicon, and provides them with the opportunity to exercise what they have learnt and apprehend vocabularies and new words satisfactorily. However, using web-based applications to teach English Language as a Second Language is an especially complex task.

This is because most adult learners have developed an attitude toward the acquisition of a new language and find they are not interested in direct language acquisition. Adult learners find difficulties adapting and using new technologies particularly web-based applications. Therefore, teaching English as a second language to adult learners becomes difficulty since most of the technologies are new and most adults have no exposure on the use of the emerging technologies. Krashen (1989) has extensively debated on the use of web-based tools and other tools to teach English as a second language to adult learners. In Krashen’s (1989) argument, using web-based applications to teach English to adults as a second language requires that the teacher should focus on providing comprehensible input for the student when using web-based applications. These applications should also provide the means for the teacher to provide extensive reading and instructions for the learner to succeed in lexical abilities. West (1953) is one of the view that the use of second language acquisition based on the use of lexical explicit leaning and identifies a number of issues related to lexical learning.

One of the fundamental issues associated with West’s (1953) findings on lexical learning includes the use of and the necessity of FonF practice in communicative learning. FonF is a paradigm that focuses on the acquisition of English Language using linguistic forms and activities that bear meaning when communicating information bears risks. However, further research reveals that FonF has had significant use in applied grammar and little use in lexical teaching. However, current research shows that FonF can be used as a direct means to teach English as a second language and has been shown to provide some direct means of providing lexical instructions.

Once lexical teaching is integrated into the teaching of English Language as a Second Language to adults using FonF, a number of benefits are bound to be experienced in the learning of English as a second language as established by the findings of Paribakht and Wesche (1997) and Zimmerman (1997). However, these authors do not explicitly show how the benefits can be integrated and used in web-based applications to teach English as a second language. They, however, assert in their research the importance of integrating FonF as a means of studying English Language as a second language. That leads to the conclusion on the need to examine the computer based form to teach and learn English Language as a send language.

One of the approaches Wood (2001) finds valuable in the teaching of English as a second language and that supports learners and teachers in the acquisition of the language is the use of computer-assisted forms. Computer assisted forms provide uniquely configured features which are extremely useful and that fosters in the learning and teaching of vocabularies. However, research shows that computers are not an intrinsically motivating resource for adults especially if their prior lives were not exposed to their use. Despite that, adults need to understand well that today is a dynamically changing society with new and emerging trends in the use of technology in language acquisition. Therefore, an integration of computers in the teaching of English to adult students should be appreciated as one of the methods that keep abreast with emerging trends in the use of technology in world being changed by technology.

Wood (2001) show in their research that computers provide multimodal capabilities for users in addition to the integrated visual aids and aura of features that allow interactive use of the computer by the adult to lean English Language as a Second Language (ELSL). Wood (2001) supports the fact that computers provide a wide range of abilities for the teacher to develop a wide range of dynamic teaching and learning capabilities. That, according to Wood (2001) provides a wide range of opportunities for the adult student to interact with the web-based application when taking an ESL course.

Wood (2001) adds to their research by pointing out that web-based applications provide the capabilities for learners to stimulate the deep learning and processing of vocabularies and learn new words and apply the new words in situations. Web-based applications provide an enabling environment for adult learners to associate words and new vocabularies to real life situations that are depicted in pictures and other relevant content. Wood (2001) continues to argue that web-based applications provide growth in the acquisition of vocabularies by the use of hypertext that are deemed superior to linear text.

Wood (2001) asserts that hypertexts are designed for the adult audience to tap into available knowledge on English Language vocabularies and the syntax of the language to avoid lexical errors. That also allows users to interactively create semantic webs whiles studying English Language as a second language. Analytically, however, the last point on creating semantic content is disputed strongly as adults fins it difficulty to interact with new technologies. Adults spend less time with new technologies and learning to the extent of creating web semantics is a difficulty activity. However, in support of the assumptions by Wood (2001), adults are able to experience different contexts of a word or a new vocabulary and are enabled by the use of technology to be in charge of their learning process. Being in charge of their learning process, adults are able to access online definitions of a word or a vocabulary, definitions, and glossaries with little effort so along as they are able to use the technology. Learners are therefore able to select online applications that suites their user needs without any restrictions experienced in a classroom environment.

Al-Seghayer (2001) contributed to Wood’s (2000) findings by adding that adult learners of English Language as a Second Language are able to gloss on individual vocabulary items coupled with video clips to be more effective and proficient in English. That further improves the lexical competence of the adult learner who concentrates on learning English using web-based applications. However, it is important to study the level of accuracy, complexity, and fluency attained by an adult taking ESL to evaluate the effectiveness of using web-based applications to study English Language as a second language.

Complexity, fluency, and accuracy are useful measures of the performance of adults in their proficiency of English Language as a second language. However, other authors content the facts that accuracy, fluency, and complexity provide the basis for measuring the proficiency of learners’ lexical efficiency of learners of English as a second language. Therefore, a mixture of items has to be considered when evaluating the effectiveness of web-based applications in teaching English as a second language (Skehan, 2009a).

In the context of the adult English Language learner, assumptions are that the memory and attentional capacity of the adult learner are limited. That is based on the contemporary theory of cognitive psychology, which relates cognitive phycology to attentional capacity and availability (Baddeley, 2007). On the other hand, relating attentional capacity and ability to use web-based applications, a number of consequences are observed. General assumptions on lexical competence based on proficient use of web-based applications by the adult learner includes characteristics such as complexities, the concern and ability to avoid errors to attain higher levels of competence, and the capacity to produce fluent speech without any errors resulting in higher degrees of fluency.

Competencies in the above areas require detailed attention in the use of web-based applications that provide the capacity for the adult learner to master the language and gain competence in each specific area. Baddeley (2007) argues that attention coupled with involvement of working memory sometimes causes a negative impact on the adult learner. Negative effects include attitudinal changes toward the use of technology, in this case web-based applications in the learning process. However, the tension that causes negative effects might be annulled when commitment to learning by the adult student gains focus leading to improved performance. That allows learners to commit themselves to applying learning memory and making it available particularly when using web-based applications.

Skehan (2001) provided a review of significant factors that favor improved performance in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. Skehan (2001) affirmed the categorization leading to improved performance on the type of tasks performed by the learner and the instructor. These tasks, the author generalized them into concrete information that led to fluency in speaking of English Language and the level of accuracy. Other generalizations included tasks with clear structures leading to higher levels of accuracy in speaking and writing English, and tasks that allowed for higher levels of complexity in the application of English in real life situations. Though Skehan (2001) does not provide a link between the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language by the adult learner and the use of web-based applications to teach English as a second language, other research studies show the dependence of the above-mentioned activities on web-based applications. Drawing a parallel between the level of competency and accuracies required and the use of web-based applications to attain the above-mentioned factors, one concludes that web-based applications facilitate the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language and provide the capabilities for the adult learner to acquire the competencies and accurate use of the language in different situations. That follows the fact that the adult learner becomes mentally committed and involved in the use of web-based applications in the learning process. Accuracy, according to studies by Krashen (1989) and West’s (1953) findings on lexical errors and the ability to use web-based applications to be efficient in the mental lexical.

Skehan (2001) hypothesized the connection between fluency, accuracy, and the performance of the adult leaner in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. In the findings reported by Skehan (2001), fluency, performance, and accuracy had a strong foundation on the use of web-based applications. Skehan (2001) affirms the findings on empirical evidence by asserting that web-based applications provide the foundation for the developing the adult leaner’s competency.

However, the author proposes that to evaluate accurately the performance of the adult learner in the acquisition of English Language as a second language, there is need to measure the level of success based on rising levels of sophistication and complexity. The progress in the area of competency for the adult learner therefore requires that the web-based application provide inbuilt features to enable progress in learning the psycholinguistics of English Language in all areas English Language acquisition and use. Therefore, there is a strong need to establish task based performance of English Language as a second language. That is in the context of features integrated into web-based applications that provide fluency and lexical competency. According to Skehan (2001), there is a strong relationship and connection between lexical competencies and fluency in the use of English Language as a second language.

Web-based applications provide the ability for the adult student to be more fluent in the use of English Language as a second language. This might look as an assumption, but analytically, study findings confirm the assumption. However, the success in the use of web-based applications in inculcating competence and fluency in the adult learner in English Language as a Second Language is based on the measure of the degree of breakdown experienced by the adult user of the language. Features integrated into the applications provide the ability to evaluate the degree of break down when using English, which is indexed by pausing, and the level and ability for the adult leaner to repair the use of English based on the learning outcomes from the use of web-based applications. The level and ability to repair the speaking of English as a second language is based on the extent to which the application being used by the adult learner provides the flexibility to reformulate the use of vocabularies and other English Language items (Towell, Hawkins & Bazergui, 1996).

One of the items that interestingly provide an evaluative approach in the use of these applications to determine the use of web-based applications and includes integrated features to compare native speakers of English Language and adults second language speakers enrolled in the study of English Language as a second language. One of the paradigms used in the comparison process includes differences in the fluent use of the language. Towell and Dewaele (2005) among the features integrated into the web-based application is the extent to which both speakers pause when using the language to speak or communicate. Towell and Dewaele (2005) reinforce their findings and baseline evaluative measures by asserting that automating and integrating performance evaluation features identify the point at which pausing occurs when a native speaker is speaking and an adult learner of English Language as a Second Language speaks. In the arguments proposed by Towell and Dewaele (2005), one is able to infer that the point at which these pauses occur and not where they occur is one of the features that allows the adult learner enrolled in ESL to identify specific points where pausing should not occur and where pausing occurs. Therefore, these applications enable the leaner to identify points at which pauses occur, end of clauses, and additional boundary points (Foster, Tonkyn & Wigglesworth, 2000).

Another approach used to evaluate and add weight to findings on the use of web-based applications in relation to the performance of English Language included analyzing information from a database on the contrast between two groups in the performance of different tasks. These tasks, according to Foster, Tonkyn and Wigglesworth (2000).were assigned for pairs of adult students who had been on ESL training. In the evaluation process, one set of students were native speakers while the other set included adult students in ESL program using web-based applications. These students were assigned simple tasks such as turning off an oven that had been left open. The narrative involved using a number of features integrated into the web-based application. The features involved pictures that had no specific story line and each of the groups were required to complete tasks assigned them once they understood the instructions.

The instructions were issued to the adult learners using web-based applications. The learners were separated into two distinct groups. One group was given the opportunity to plan and use web-based applications to carry out their activities while the other group had no opportunity to use we b based applications to carry out their activities. The learners in the group who had the opportunity to use web-based applications plan were given ten minutes to plan and complete their activities while those who had not been given an opportunity to use the web-based application were not given time to plan and carry out their duties. Each of the groups were allowed to take notes, which were taken away immediately after the tasks were completed. Each of the groups was required to use a web-based application to make notes. Each of the groups was then examined on their pausing on three tasks. The groups consisted of native and non-native English Language adult speakers.

Experimental results showed a significant relationship between non-native speakers who used web-based applications and their performance, and non-native speakers without the opportunity to use the web-based applications. Adult learners with the opportunity to use web-based applications paused less than those who did not use any technology in the process of learning and doing assigned activities. It was found that speakers of English as a second language could regard as boundaries which provided boundaries for online learning and teaching. However, a one of the groups in the testing process involved native speakers of English language. It was established that native speakers could pause clearly in mid-clause compared with non-native speakers. However, non-native speakers who used we based technologies showed less distinct pauses mid-clause comap0red with learners of English who never used web-based technologies. Therefore, the assumption and findings showed a strong significance of web-based technologies in teaching and learning of English Language as a second language. Having analyzed the impact of learning English Language as a Second Language for the adult student, using web-based applications in the study and teaching of English Language as a Second Language to adults, it is important to examine the attitudinal effect of adults on learning English using web-based applications.

Coryell and Chlup (2007), one of the researchers into the use of web-based applications to teach and learn English as a second language by adults conducted studies to understand how attitude towards the use of technology influenced their use by their adult population. In his thesis, Coryell and Chlup (2007) reviewed literature on the level of enjoyment of learning English as a second language by the adult population, the level of usefulness of computer-assisted technologies in teaching and learning English Language as a second language. The author researched on the categories of internet technologies and other web-based applications adult learners were choosing to use and the reasons for their choices.

Coryell and Chlup (2007) wanted to understand the perceptions adults had in the use of technology as a means of the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language and their prior experiences with the use of web-based applications. Coryell and Chlup (2007) focused on literature on the use of web-based applications in teaching and learning English as a second language. Coryell and Chlup (2007) argued that authors like Brown (1992) viewed the use of web-based applications to bring about repercussions on the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language by the adult student. Brown (1992) in their studies established that web-based applications were the platform for hosting adult English Language programs. Coryell and Chlup (2007) concluded that the method of using computers for the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language by the adult learner was-based on the functionalities of the computer and the features integrated into the application.

Coryell and Chlup (2007) further argued that computer assisted learning (CAL), which relies on web-based applications provided an enabling environment that consisted of programs that included grammar, listening, and reading, as mentioned elsewhere in this paper. In addition to that, Coryell and Chlup (2007) affirmed that using the web-based technologies implied the adult learner was also communicating using web-based technologies. Coryell and Chlup (2007)) concluded in their study that attitudinal changes were some of the underlying reasons that affected performance in the acquisition of English languages as a second language. However, Coryell and Chlup (2007) do not explain in detail how the conclusions were reached, but much has been discussed elsewhere in the paper on adults and their attitude toward the use of web-based applications and how it affects their performance in the acquisition of English Language as a second language.

Though Coryell and Chlup (2007) were able to conclude in the affirmative that technology had a strong influence on the way adult learners acquired English as a second language, further studies revealed the rationale behind the conclusions. Maddux and Johnson (1997).was one of the researchers Coryell and Chlup (2007) relied on to inform their study on the use of technology and its impact on the acquisition of English Language as a second language. Studies led to the conclusion that technology “has the potential in its capability both to supervise student performance and to monitor, record, analyze, and summarize data about that performance” (Maddux & Johnson, 1997).The assertion was in relation to one of the applications used for the acquisition of English Language as a second language. One of the technologies, Programmed Logic for Automatic Teaching Operations (PLATO), was the basis for the assumptions and conclusions by (Coryell & Chlup, 2007). However, other newer technologies developed later provided better services and more integrated features to address the English Language adult learners’ needs.

Despite these conclusions, Chapelle (2001) was able to identify a number of negative technological factors that caused a number of other teachers and learners of English Language as a Second Language to adopt it. These included the negative attitude of teachers toward the use of technology to teach English as a second language, and the cost of the technologies. However, it is possible to contend at this point that technologies have improved with time and have become less expensive, making their accessibility possible to many learners. Chapelle (2001). supports the idea by adding that many intelligent software applications have been developed and some are offered free online or at small and affordable fees. Current applications are developed with special focus on the needs of the student. However, much of Chapelle’s (2001) research dwelt on the technologies were at their infancy and being developed for use in teaching English Language as a second language. However, their conclusions were positive and received much support on the use of web-based applications in the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language for the adult student.

Other studies in support of the use of web-based applications to learn English Language as a Second Language by the adult leaner received much support by (Cohen, 1985). Cohen (1985) studied reasons why computer technology in the form of web-based applications should be used to teach English as a second language. Among the findings brought forward by Cohen (1985) included ability to provide the adult student with practical learning capabilities, ability to motivate the adult leaner in the acquisition of the language as a second language, and increase availability of materials authenticated and approved for the teaching and learning of English Language as a second language. In addition to these findings, Cohen (1985) proposed other benefits to include flexibility and ability of the adult learner to interact with a wide community and audience of peers and to enable the adult student to emphasize and focus on individual goals. Other benefits included flexibility to use different sources of materials and learning materials while creating a sense of belonging to the global community. These facts received significant support from Kellner (2000). who argued that using web-based applications that rely on computers provide the advantages over traditional teaching methods that involved face-to-face interactions.

Ellis (1995) and Sternberg (1987) conducted their own research into the use of web-based applications and their implications on adult learners. According to Ellis (1995) and Sternberg (1987), web-based applications provided the learner with the ability to learn thousands of lexical items compared with traditional teaching and learning methods. However, these authors have not shown their analysis and research data they relied on, yet their findings have shown that the adult learner was able to interact frequently with the second language. Therefore, technology, according to Ellis (1995) and Sternberg (1987) could bridge the gap between students who could not reach the traditional classes and those who had the opportunity to interact in a traditional classroom setting.

One other advantage associated with the use of technology to study English as a second language by the adult learner included ability to access materials by public and private means. Public and private means include ability to access teaching materials that traditionally were confined to public institutions and that came with significant cost in private institutions. Kellner (2000) reinforces their findings by researching on adult learners taking English as a second language. In their findings, Kellner (2000) indicated that web-based technologies contributed positively to the acquisition of the language as a second language, despite their limitations. One of the limitations identified in the research included the inability of the adult learner to use web-based technologies. If a user or an adult student had an inability to use the technologies, there might be an inherent fear in the student and ultimately, the student might not find it useful. However, for students wh had the basic knowledge of the usage of web-based applications, Kellner (2000) noted that these group of students found the use of technology in the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language easy to learn. Therefore, basic literacy in the usage of web-based applications formed fundamental component of the use of web-based applications in the acquisition of English Language as a second language.

The argument on the use of web-based applications by the adult student to study English as one of the most efficient tools to teach English as a second language was reinforced further by Kellner’s (2000) findings. However, contrary to Kellner’s (2000) findings, new research shows that most current websites provide the flexibility and provisions for translating English Language to other languages, making their usage more friendly and focused. Therefore, one is compelled to infer that such web sites contribute significantly to a positive attitude in the learner and the learner in learning English as a second language. Ellis and Beaton (1993) contribute to the positive findings on the use of technology to teach English as a second language by asserting that instructors need to be aware of the need for literacy in web-based applications to teach English as a second language. Ellis and Beaton (1993) add to the findings by asserting that instructors also need to be well educated in the use of web-based applications. However, the research is based on the assumption that teachers of English Language to adults have proficiency in the use of web-based applications and other computer aided applications. That requirement has an underlying rationale in the need for instructors to be in a position to use web-based applications to fully assist their students on web-based programs.

According to studies by Ellis and Beaton (1993) instructors need to have proficient and thorough knowledge on the use of web-based applications, which students use, and the programs they use to instruct their students. However, if the instructors are not acquainted with the use of web-based applications, they need to undergo educational training on the use of these technologies to make benefits of using web-based applications existent (Roblyer, 2003). Roblyer (2003), on the other hand, has evaluated the disadvantages of using web-based applications to include the insufficiency in web-based applications to perform certain tasks. According to Roblyer (2003), web-based applications were found to be still imperfect in enabling the student learner to read, write, and listen to speech. These programs are deficient in evaluating the level of appropriateness of user’s spoken input, making it difficult to help the learner in the acquisition of English Language in the learning process. That is because a web-based application should be able to “diagnose a student’s problems with pronunciation, syntax, or usage and then intelligently decide among a range of options” (Warschauer, 1996). However, other researchers in the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language by the adult learner indicate divergent views. These include the arguments by Ellis and Beaton (1993) who concluded that the experience leaners had from the feedback provided on a web-based application contributed to the negative views held by the student and not the level of complexity of the web-based application.

Therefore, according to Ellis and Beaton (1993) technological experience in the usage of the applications had little or no significant impact on the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language by the adult learner. A typical example, was when an application could not recognize answers that were correct but wrongly spelled. Other applications were not able to provide sufficient answers on the appropriateness of some answers and the inappropriateness of some other answers. That made it difficult for the adult learner to use a web-based application to determine correct and incorrect answers. It was further established that some software programs could only identify one correct answer for a particular question that had more than one answer. Other weaknesses identified in the use of the applications was the inability of the application to help a student learn the correct accent, which made other leaners concentrate in the technical problems and deviate from the main objective of language acquisition. That, according to Ellis and Beaton (1993) motivated adult students to use the applications with high expectations. However, different weaknesses could be experienced in the process of language acquisition, causing the adult learner to be frustrated in the use of the applications and eventually discard its usage. The study concluded that the blame for the frustrations experienced by the adult learners in the acquisition of the language was due to the design and not due to the technology aspect.

Ellis and Beaton (1993) found out in their research that imperfect designs and lead to the main disadvantage experienced with the technology. That included a weakness in the technology to deal with technological challenges experienced during its usage, and the occurrence of unexpected situations. It is well worth noting at this point that any adult learner who has used a web-based application to study English as a second language has experienced a wide range of situations that transpire in the language acquisition process. The presence of a living instructor to offer English Language lessons provides clear and distinct benefits compared with using a web-based application. That is partly due to the limitations an application has and limited intelligence of the web bases application. Ellis and Beaton (1993) identifies the inability of a computer based application and related applications to cope with unexpected problems that arise during the learning process. That is also reinforced by the fact that computers and human beings possess and process information differently. Studies by Salisbury and Klein (1988) and Felix (2005) show that most adult learners regard the physical presence of their instructors as a positive contribution to assisting leaners handle their difficulties efficiently. The views were reinforced further by the fact that adult students regarded the presence of their instructors as a facilitating factor in the acquisition of English language. Salisbury and Klein (1988).contributed to these findings by asserting that the physical presence of an adult learner contributed to the cultural knowledge, communication skills, and confidence of the learner, an environment that could not be created using a web-based application.

Felix (2005) continued studying the significance of web-based applications for the acquisition of English Language by the adult leaner and arrived at several conclusions. Felix (2005) realized in the study that web-based applications provide an autonomous learning environment. An autonomous learning environment provided adult students with the flexibility to learn when they want, how they want, and at a controlled English Language acquisition rate. These study findings received support from the studies by (Salisbury & Klein, 1988). Salisbury and Klein (1988) contributed tothe findings by arguing that online communication provided an environment for learners to interact with other learners and share their experiences. Salisbury and Klein (1988) viewed the interactive web-based environment to be free of human conflicts, which allowed students a lot of flexibility in using the web-based applications in the acquisition of English language. However, conclusions by Salisbury and Klein (1988) seem to lack the fact that some situations of impatience can be fostered if the technology in use is complicated and not well understood. Siegel and Misselt (1984) add to the findings of Salisbury and Klein (1988) by asserting that a number of students don not get discourage din the usage of technology in the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language despite making repeated mistakes.

To clearly understand the attitude adult students developed toward the use of web-based applications in the acquisition of English Language as a second language, Siegel and Misselt (1984) conducted research to address the problem. In their research, Siegel and Misselt (1984) investigated the attitude adult students developed by focusing on four specific areas. These areas included their attitude in learning acoustic phonetics. The specific area of interest was to identify the frequency with which adults used web-based applications in the acquisition of English Language as a second language, the specific program they were confortable with in the acquisition of the language, and the reason for using the specific program they had recommended. In the research, Siegel and Misselt (1984) realized that students’ opinion was important in determining the actual attitude developed in studying English Language as a second language.

The adult students were also required, in the study, to express their level of satisfaction with each specific program among the programs they recommended. The students were also required to give specific reasons for a particular type of program. Siegel and Misselt (1984) analyzed their findings that enabled them make interesting observations. The researchers realized that most of the adult students enrolled in ESL classes used web-based applications to study grammar, listen to the English Language in its spoken form, and to learn grammar. These findings were also indicated that a significant number of students used web-based applications to listen to spoken English, while a small number listed speaking as an activity they engaged in. In their studies, Lasagabaster and Sierra (2003) concluded that students develop a positive attitude toward these computerized programs when used with minimal engagements, that web-based applications were biased toward certain activities, and web-based applications required some enhancements in the areas of pronunciation and spoken English.

In support of the latter findings mentioned above, Lasagabaster and Sierra (2003) concluded that attitude made a significant contribution in the usage of computer-based applications. Siegel and Misselt (1984) stated that “although we have no statistically reliable evidence that computer exercises necessarily result in higher grades, students nevertheless clearly believe that the exercises help improve their work”. That strongly supported conclusions drawn by Siegel and Misselt (1984) who concluded in their research that attitude had a significant role to play in the usage of web-based applications by the adult students enrolled in ESL classes. However, due to lack of concrete evidence on attitudinal effects on the use of web-based applications in the acquisition of English Language as a second language, lack of control groups in the study, and lack of systematic analysis using empirical research questions, issues related to the validity of the findings and conclusions are bound to arise. Therefore, the conclusions drawn above by a number of authors had strong variations. However, the general conclusions attitudinal effects toward the use of web-based applications and their influence in the acquisition of English as a second language could be viewed generally as applicable in the ESL adult classes. That, therefore, indicates that available data shows that overall adult student perceptions on the use if web-based applications in ESL were significantly positive.

Authors who have devoted their time in the research on the use of web-based applications have attempted to determine the underlying reasons for adult learners using web-based applications in the acquisition of English language. That adds to the rationale for the use of web-based applications in the acquisition of English as a second language. The studies were to establish reasons for the use of web-based applications in the acquisition of English as a second language and the benefits students were likely to gain in the use of the technology. Among the reasons established in the studies included adults understanding information about the weather, conduct their classes, in virtual travel, online entertainment, and interactions between the people. Therefore, adult students acquire valuable skills other than just the acquisition of the English language. In addition to that, acquisition of English Language as a Second Language provides one with employability skills and provides a level playing field for adults who take ESL lessons. Siegel and Misselt (1984) argued that making English Language lessons available based on web-based applications enables easy access to learning materials and makes these materials equitably distributed to the adult learners. In addition to that, Siegel and Misselt (1984) argues in their research that using web-based applications in the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language in ESL classes enables one to use these skills in skimming and scanning for information.

Motivation

One of the critical elements to consider as already mentioned in the paper is motivation. Motivating adult learners enrolled in the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language using web-based applications is critical in retaining the adult student. Morgan and Tam (1999) conducted studies and established that distance learners using web-based applications had a significantly higher attrition rates than adult students registered in on campus studies base that on studies. However, there is need to establish the underlying reasons leading to the high level of attrition rates compared to other forms of learning. That could also contribute significantly to retaining adult students registered on ESL classes and motivate them complete their studies. The factors could also contribute to could also be motivating factors to teachers who take the adult students in ESL classes in teaching adult ESL students.

To establish the underlying reasons that facilitate the high attrition rates for adult students undertaking ESL classes on web-based applications, Garland (1993) attempted to divide the items into three. These included situational factors that included the life circumstances of the student such as ability to acquire a job after completion, dispositional problems that included personal problems. These problems had a significant impact on the adult student’s behavioral patterns and persistence in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. Garland (1993) recognized that institutional factors had a positive influence in the attrition rates of adult students taking ESL classes using web-based applications. Institutional problems were directed specifically at the lack of appropriate support for the adult student taking ESL classes on web-based applications. Garland (1993) researched and narrowed down to situational and dispositional factors to have a significantly positive influence on the attrition rates of the adult student. One of the supporters of the findings by Garland (1993) was Kember (1989) who established a strong relationship between persistence to use these web-based applications and age and housing conditions.

Woodley and Parlett (1983) added to the study by asserting that previous qualifications held by the adult student, the adult student occupation, and future prospects in the use of the knowledge gained in English played a significant role in motivating the adult learner to use the web-based applications in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. Belawati (1998) devoted a lot of time to study the motivating effects on the use of web-based applications in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. In their studies, Belawati (1998) realized that attitude was one of the factors that influenced motivation in the use of web-based applications in the acquisition of English as second language. Belawati (1998) continued to assert that some aspects of the web-based applications needed to address some issues that had strong relationship with the motivation to stay and use the applications. In addition to that, Belawati (1998) established the fact that some of the applications are continually modified therefore providing the adult student with the challenges of having to study how to use the technology afresh. That practice was demotivating instead of proving a motivating factor in the development of a positive attitude in the student in the use of web-based applications in the acquisition of English as a second language. However, there is need for the teacher taking students studying English as a second language to evaluate the applications used to identify internal and external variables in use of web-based applications in the study of English as a second language. These come in the form of challenges that are institutional in nature, more particularly for teachers who offer instructions using web-based applications for adult students taking ESL acquisition classes.

Institutional challenges in the study were categorized into administrative issues and organization, the technical support offered to the adult student in the ESL class, academic support offered by the instructors, and the quality issues of instructional materials. An evaluation of the web-based applications and the content used to teach these students shows a significant level of inconsistencies regarding the content used in teaching ESL adult students significantly affects the student. Researchers have realized that support staff sometimes behaves in a manner that is frustration to the adult student, therefore, demotivating instead of motivating the student in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. In addition to that, research has shown that instructors who are thoroughly equipped with knowledge in the appropriate use of technology for English Language acquisition provide strong support and motivation for the student to learn English as a second language. Therefore, it is important to embrace every method that allows the teacher or instructor to interact with adult students using the web-based applications to improve the manner in which they collaborate with the teachers or instructors and fellow students.

Hara and Kling (1999) attempted to establish the strongest demotivating factors for adult learners engaged in ESL classes. In their research, Hara and Kling (1999) realized that adult students were likely to be frustrated from the kind of feedback they received form their instructors using web-based applications. Some of the responses received for the instructors were ambiguous causing demotivation in the English Language adult learner. Hara and Kling (1999) were able to establish that the frequency of interaction with the student on the web-based application, and the timelines in responding to the student could have a positive impact n the motivation of the student. That was further supported by Kember (1981) who argued in the statement that “the frequency and nature of contacts, the speed of response to student-initiated contacts, [and] the provision of local tutorials…can contribute to whether or not the student has any positive feelings of association with the institution” (Kember, 1981). Positive feeling by the student is one of the critical factors that students compelling in their drive to conduct adult based learning. However, other researchers have studied the need to motivate intrinsic motivation in the student to attain the main goal of using web-based applications in the study of English Language as a second language. That follows the fact that studies has shown that demotivation is one the most critical factors contributing to failure by the adult learner to attain successes and enroll in ESL classes.

The motivational factors have their foundation in theory and practice and are critical for the instructors taking students through ESL classes using web-based applications. According to Gibbs et al. (1984), these factors are classified into intrinsic motivational factors and extrinsic motivational factors. According to Gibbs et al. (1984), extrinsic factors include vocational motivation that drives an adult individual in seeking for a better job, the desire to pass an exam, in this case, ESL exam that falls under the category of academic factors, and personal factors. Personal factors are also extrinsic factors that motivate the adult learner to become proficient in English Language and prove to peers and others about their capabilities. Other extrinsic factors proposed by Gibbs et al. (1984) are social factors. Other motivational factors include “motivations to learning; social contact, social stimulation, professional advancement, community service, external expectations, and cognitive interest” (Boshier & Collins, 1985). However, other researchers viewed motivation of the adult learner from the situational, content, and learner centeredness. One of the proponents of this approach was Atkinson (1964) who argued form the perspective of achievements motivations. In their studies, successfully Atkinson (1964) argued that achievement was one of the motivational factors contributing to the success of the adult learner enrolled in English Language learning.

However, other researchers contend that achievement is one of the motivational factors but not the main explanation to the driving force leading to adult learners complete their ESL studies in the acquisition of English as a second language. Another theory such as the effectiveness theory, which is outside the achievement theory, provides another explanation behind the motivation from the adult student to study English as a second language. The underlying concept of the effectiveness theory is repetition. Repetition counts for the effective acquisition of English as a second language by conducting repetitiveness in doing a learning task. When a student repeatedly performs a specific task, one becomes proficient in carrying out that task. Therefore, one is bound to develop performance effectiveness, become much faster in doing the learning task, enjoy exercising the leant skill, and improve the cognitive procedures. Therefore, the researchers assume that effectiveness is one mode of the intrinsic factors that lead to self-improvement. Gibbs et al.’s (1984), therefore, was assumed to provide one of the most comprehensive evaluations of use of computer based teaching and learning of English Language acquisition as a second language.

Another study conducted by Gibbs et al.’s (1984), was centered on social intrinsic motivation. Social motivation, as already discussed in the paper led Gibbs et al.’s (1984) to term the process with the argument that “social orientation appears to be extrinsic almost by definition as it cannot be related to the course itself” (Gibbs et al., 1984). However, other researchers were able to link social motivation to sporting and other social issues. However, different adults respond to social motivation in different ways. According to Gibbs et al.’s (1984), Morgan (1993) viewed social motivation to be interactive component of associated with features inherent in web-based applications. These researchers seem to content the last point made on social motivation by contenting that it has no dimension and impact on students who use web-based applications. Despite the assumptions, web-based applications, analytically, provide a lot of features that allow users of the application to interactively use the applications in sporting and other social events as one of the learning processes. Therefore, these applications provide the components needed to provide the interactive use of web-based applications to enrich language acquisitions. One such feature includes chatting. Chatting provides the adult learner with the intrinsic capability to learn interactively English Language as a second language. These are attained by identifying and using the features that allow and enable the adult learner to interact with the application in the English Language acquisition process. However, these motivational factors have to be initiated in the adult learner to help attain their goal.

It is important to identify means that are used to motivate the adult leaner by examining methods used to overcome the negative feelings and attitude developed by the adult student. One of methods used to stop negative feelings in the adult student is to avoid teacher-centered instructions on web-based applications. The studies showed that teachers should adopt methods that elicited student needs and wants aimed at attainable goals. One of the proponents of this method was (Wittrock, 1986a). In Wittrock’s (1986a) studies, failure or success could be attributed to the lack of effort in the student and the teacher, and not the ability or aptitude of the adult student. However, Wittrock’s (1986a) findings had some critical weaknesses who argued that failure could be attributed to task difficulty. Adults, according to other research findings showed that success could always be re-negotiated for the adult leaner to attain success. Therefore, the assumptions that success is partly due to the student’s effort included conclusions attained in the studies.

However, adults are exposed to an environment with a number of choices that compete for time and effort. These choices require that the adult develop intrinsic motivation to make an appropriate choice by initiating intrinsic motivation in one’s self to attain the success. Intrinsic motivation is based on various factors with varying strengths and according to the learning activities involved in the learning process. One outstanding example is when a student puts a lot of time in redoing an assignment based on the curiosity on tutor feedback. However, some studies show that despite the efforts to motivate the student in the acquisition of English Language as a second language, some students continue to develop negative attitude that gradually takes toll on the student by leading to discouragement and failure. Some of the decisions might be long term, leading the adults leaner to gradual discouragement and failure. Some of the adults, as research have shown is based on self-awareness of poor aptitude and failure. However, it is important to study the actual causes of poor aptitude in the adult student to take corrective measures.

One of the factors of poor aptitude is educational. According to Kawachi (2000a) educational aptitude, include insufficient language acquisition skills, and inability to use web-based technologies in the acquisition of English as a second language. In addition to poor attitude on the use of web-based applications, inability to acquire appropriate reading speeds. Onscreen reading speeds are by far different from ordinary on book reading speeds. Kawachi (2000a) established further that weak technical skills in the use of web-based applications, which required a significant amount of competence in their usage, were some of the demotivating factors. Narita (1999) researched and realized that a number of social and political issues contributed to the weaknesses discussed above.

One of the studies that provided support for the use of web-based applications and their effectiveness in the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language was the effectiveness and wide range of psychological tools and techniques web-based applications exposed the instructor. These techniques and tools provided the teacher or instructor with the ability to motivate the adult student to continue with ESL classes. That is despite the fact that failing students taking ESL consume many resources in terms of time and effort. These resources, of course, are limited and come at a cost. These costs and time do not include extra support that might be required by the adult student who is weak in the ESL class. It is possible for the instructor to find it difficult to cope, eventually causing the student to fail and drip out of the ESL class. However, it is critically vital for the instructor to initiate intrinsic motivation to enable the student successfully complete the course.

One of the motivational effects that an instructor ought to inculcate in the adult student is intrinsic motivation. Intrinsic motivation enables learners to concentrate in their vocational duties. These vocational duties include skills that assist the leaner acquire and continue with their future desires and duties. One of the tested methods for attaining intrinsic motivation is the use of expressiveness. According to Brown (1987) and Hodgson (1997) intrinsic motivation, and especially, academic intrinsic motivation enables the adult learner develop one’s own intellectual capabilities in mastering the English Language as a second language. Intrinsic motivation leads to expressiveness that can be used in web-based applications by the instructor. Expressiveness is one is defined as a component consisting of “enthusiasm, friendliness, humor, dynamism, and charisma” (Brown, 1987). The teacher can use a web-based application to deliver expressiveness to the adult student. Expressiveness influences student response and significantly contributes to better English Language acquisitions by the adult student. Expressiveness also influences student attitude toward learning of English as a second language and leads to long term positive attitude toward learning the language and use of web-based applications in acquisition of English as a second language. That also transfers the student’s perceptions about the language as transfers the mind of the student to view and regard the subject from the tutor’s eye.

The transfer of the mind of the student to view the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language through the eye of the tutor enables the student to figure out the tutor’s perceptions and passion toward English language, adding value to the student’s own perceptions. Therefore, when web-based applications are used to make an instructor’s presence felt by the student that leads to emotional presence of the teacher, which is a strong emotional factor in motivating the student. However, web-based applications provide some virtual environments where teachers and adult learners interact. Thais is based on social interactions using social media and other applications for learning. That is also based on a sense of community created using internet technologies and other web-based applications. Used of online expressiveness is when teachers create an online community of students. However, little research has been done in that area to warrant decisive conclusions. However, research has shown that intrinsic motivation is one of the most effective and desirable forms of motivation for adult students enrolled in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. Studies show that personal intrinsic motivation drives the student toward pursuing the study of the English Language toward the fulfillment of one’s goals. However, extrinsic motivation fuels the adult student to improve one’s capabilities.

Malone (1981) and Furth (1970) attempted to study and categorize the fundamentals of intrinsic motivation. They argued that intrinsic motivation was fuelled in the learner by the need to attain the mastery of the language, to satisfy one’s own curiosity, and ability to assimilate the information and knowledge obtained to attain one’s own goals and aspirations. Therefore, according to the research, teachers could be enabled to initiate intrinsic motivation that was the underlying reason from one’s success by identifying the need so the student and specifying what they needed most. Once these factors are identified, the teacher or the instructor could proceed to make the factors meaningful to the student. The meaningful factors could allow the student to elicit the points and safely relate them to their current study context. The factors are fixed at the early stages of the course for the student to discover the objectives and agree upon them with the teacher. In the discovery and formulation process of the objectives, the student should be the focus.

That could make the objectives personally meaningful to the student and the teacher. However, emphasis should be placed the student. These objectives should be formulated to ensure quality while newer objectives become emergent, which student identify themselves with. According to the study reports, these objectives should emerge from interactions with the student and the teacher-using web-based applications. The applications act as the platform that holds the content for the teacher and the student undertaking ESL lessons for the acquisition of English Language as the second language. The teacher plays a significant role in moderating the content in a web-based application that is used for teaching adult students enrolled in ESL classes. Studies show that close monitoring and timely feedback by the teacher to the student enables the teacher and the student to attain predetermined goals. The teacher is also able to moderate the difficulty level of the student and enable the student to fit into a specific category without ambiguity while enabling the student to attain determine goals and objectives. Feedback has also been identified to be one of the underlying factors that tailor curiosity in the student. That also supports further findings, which shows that the learner could provide feedback on what they have learnt and allows students to publish what they have learnt.

One of the characteristic of web-based applications in the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language are predesigned and prepackaged course content. Research shows when the level of interaction between the student and the adult learner is low, then multiple level of difficulty are experienced. When a student experiences such difficult in the learning process, then the student is able to choose from the options to optimize their learning capabilities. Studies show that the choice enables adult students to select the level of difficulty they are to deal with in the learning process to protect self-esteem. Protection against self-esteem allows the teacher to stimulate growth in the student based on self-tailored attainable success (Weiner, 1992). Therefore, multiple levels of difficulty are essential in accommodating student with a diversity of capabilities in the acquisition of English Language as a second language.

Another type of motivation that needs to be inculcated in the student is intrinsic fantasy. Intrinsic fantasy is supported on web-based applications by allowing the student understands how courseware, which is software, can be used to attain authentic and experienced schema. Experienced schema is used in positive knowledge transfer from the teacher to the adult student. That makes the student potential more enhanced in their studies.

There is need to identify and understand intrinsic personality curiosity motivation and connect it with the use of web-based applications for the acquisition of English as a second language. Intrinsic curiosity motivation has two elements that can be acquired using web-based applications. These elements include sensory curiosity and cognitive curiosity. Cognitive curiosity, according to Malone’s (1981) studies included the utilization of visual aids in teaching adult learners undertaking ESL acquisition lessons. The visual potential of web-based applications for use in the acquisition of English as a second language intrinsically motivates the leaner in the acquisition of the language. The motivational effect becomes evident in the student when sensory curiosity is aroused in the adult student. Malone (1981) has argued that students who are field dependent in learning English as a second language become sensory motivated. Another group of students, reflective of the current study are those who become sensory motivated are adults who take ESL classes in the acquisition of the language. Adults using web-based applications, according to the studies conducted by Malone (1981) shows that adults become motivated by adopting the synchronous visual potential to their learning environment. Malone (1981) also argues that seeing and listening, the potential provided by the use of web-based applications has the potential of causing intrinsic motivation in the student.

One of the methods used to initiate cognitive curiosity using web-based applications is tutor feedback. Feedback from the tutor becomes fundamental as it reveals the feelings of the student and an outcome from the thinking of the student. It also provides feedback on the self-reflection of the student and enables the student to understand one’s own knowledge structure. Once the knowledge structure has been understood, the student is able to identify weakness in one’s one knowledge structure and other inconsistencies and take corrective actions. Therefore, the tutor must tailor content on the web-based application to address the weaknesses identified in the student and look for ways to enable the student improve their knowledge of English as a second language (Feuerstein et al., 1991). Studies by Feuerstein et al., (1991) show that the feedback and the content sent to the student should be made useful to the student. Therefore, the tutor’s feedback should be helpful to the student to perform different tasks with a lot of independence. The student is able to progress in the acquisition of English as a second language and based on the helpful feedback. Feedback, therefore, becomes a technique that enables the student to expose their own weaknesses and gaps in learning and help facilitate reparative learning.

Reparative learning, used on web-based applications become critical in helping weak adult students in the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language (Stevens, 1981). Reparative learning also enables teachers tailor specific questions to specific students with their own weaknesses. Therefore, students are able to discover their own weaknesses since the questions have been tailored to address individual needs. That also allows the student to search deeper into their weaknesses and devote their time in constructivist learning (Bruner, 1966). Therefore, in conclusion, web-based applications provide the flexibility and motivational backing for the acquisition of English Language as ascend language by the adult learner in ESL classes. The motivational effects are realized in the rapid development of the student’s knowledge in the acquisition and development of individual knowledge in English as a second language. Once the adult student becomes motivated in the acquisition of English as a second language, it becomes clear that web-based technology is the underlying component in attaining the motivation. Motivation, as already been studied provides the learner with the drive to strive to become proficient in different aspects of the usage of the language. These involve the use of web-based applications such as Wimba Voice Tools. These tools enable audio recording and playback, and are tailored to address learning needs of adult students enrolled in ESL class in the acquisition of English Language as a second language.

The Constructivist Approach

Knowles (2004) has studied different methodologies used on web-based applications in the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language and realized that modern approaches to learning and teaching English as a second language calls for the use of constructivism. Knowles (2004) has argued that the research that modern constructivism requires that the adult student assemble a number of elements or English Language items into a meaningful component. Based on the constructivist theory, one is required to assemble information using features integrated into the application, and attain some meaningful outcome. However, there is the argument that learning is not constrained to a single setting or environment, but influenced by the physical environment the adult student finds oneself. Therefore, one can conclude that learning based on the constructivism theory enables the student to learn with a purpose and make sense out of the learning process. That in itself is reflected in the learning outcomes where the individual is able to use the English Language knowledge to communicate with others. Therefore, the learning outcome enables the student to use the knowledge to function in a specific environment and communicate with other individuals in the same environment.

The theory has its foundation or baseline in learning to communicate as the primary goal, which motivates the student to acquire competence in the language. Arguments based on the theory indicate that the student be able to learn and use a widely available opportunity to analyze the second language elements and come out with meaningful outcome. The elements that the student has an opportunity to analyze include vocabulary, phonological elements, and grammatical structures. Students are required, from the proposition of the theory, to practice using the linguistic elements acquired during the learning process, by constructing elements or sentences that have meaning. The practice is assumed to enable the student become proficient in the use of the language as a second language. However, these social interaction elements can only be addressed if the web-based applications provide a personalized environment that enables the adult learner to follow individualized progress in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. In addition, the application should provide a platform for social interaction for the student to study and experiment in the physical environment the use of the language. This is also enabled when students interact with each other in an enabling environment.

However, instructional activities using web-based applications should be integrated into the applications to ensure persistent growth in the use of English Language as a second language. However, in order to grow as explained in the constructivism theory, a number of elements have to be regarded with a keen interest. These include the specific elements that define the theory. While the theory constitutes different theoretical explanations underlying educational philosophy, yet the theory is critical in enabling the teacher and the student set specific goals outlined in the theory for the growth of the student. These include specific goals such as enabling the student to practice with the knowledge acquired in the learning and development process. Development in this case is enhancing and improving one’s skills in the use of English Language in the physical environment. In addition to that, the theory provides that the student be able to appreciate the multiple perspectives of the language and its usage, enable the student to learn and be realistic in the use of the language, and enable the adult student to embed whatever has been learnt in the social context relevant to the acquired knowledge. The student should also be able to apply the language in multiple modes and encourage them to participate and develop self-awareness in the English Language acquisition process. However, all these goals have to be enabled when using a web-based application. Therefore, in the design of a web-based application that reflects features defined in the constructivism theory, it becomes imperative to identify the specific features that define the constructivism theory.

The salient features that a designer of a web-based application needs to know include the multiple representations of content and concepts that enable efficient and effective delivery of ESL lessons in the acquisition of English as a second language. Other features include the flexibility to enable students establish, identify, and set their own goals that reflect the underlying motivation for the study. The application, according to the theory has to identify and define the role of teachers in teaching adults taking English Language as a second language. The role for teachers includes being monitors, coaches, guides, tutors, and facilitators. The application should also provide the teacher with the flexibility and features that allow them perform their tasks in an interactive manner with the student. However, there is need to identify the fact that the student plays a central role in knowledge acquisition. The application should enable students seek knowledge independently and enable to the student to identify the conceptual relationship between theory and practice in the application of the acquired knowledge in the real world. The theory provides room for collaborative learning and enables the learner to integrate assessment into the application, which is authentic, and interwoven with meaningful teaching.

However, in order to be effective in using web-based applications in teaching and learning of English Language as a second language, there is need to identify and understand the basic instructional activities to integrate into the application to be effective in the delivery of instructions for the student taking English as a second language. These activities are deeply entrenched in constructivist theory and strong advocated by the proponents of the constructivist theory. These proponents argue that individual construction of knowledge to be one of the inherent factors that define the theory (Bradshaw, 2005; Hampel & Hauck, 2004; Knowles, 2004b; Rosell-Aguilar, 2005; Ruschoff & Ritter, 2001). According to these proponents, one of the tools that enable success in the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language is the speech component. Speech, as already mentioned elsewhere in the paper is critical in enabling the adult student use the knowledge in the physical environment, which is the knowledge acquired according to the constructivist theory. The theory assumes that good voice practices are one of the underlying factors in one’s active development and use of the language. Of the elements that call for the use of and application of the constructivist theory are self-awareness, personalized feedback, self-access, encouragement and explanation, working at pace, self-reliance, and individualized learning pathways. Other aspects of the constructivist theory that need to be addressed are self-evaluation. Thus, web-based applications should provide features that address individual needs and growth of the adult student and address needs in the learning style of the student, and other related needs.

It is critical to note the fact that the constructivist theory is not changed with the mode of delivery of tutorials to the adult student enrolled in ESL adult classes. That implies that using web-based applications do not change the underlying principles that define the constructivist theory. Therefore, the basic underlying principles of the constructivist’s theory apply for web-based applications. The underlying principles of the constructivist theory include situational learning, emphasis on input oriented learning, encouragement of output oriented learning, promotion of cultural competencies, and fostering of for, and promoting the storage in memory a sequence of sounds and words that the adult student has learnt in the English Language acquisition process. Interaction as already discussed elsewhere in the paper calls for the teacher and the student to interact in the learning and imparting process.

Researchers do not classify the form of interaction that involves the computer and the student as a social interaction, but as a platform that provides the abilities for leaners to interact socially. Therefore, the computer is viewed as a tool that facilitates social interactions by providing such opportunities to the users. That is also important especially in an environment where teachers and students might find it impossible or difficult to come together. However, when using web-based applications to teach adult students that take English Language as a Second Language might involve face-to-face interactions or distance learning. Therefore, these webs based applications provide the opportunities for student and teachers with no opportunity to come together to share with the computer acting as a facilitator and a social platform. Web-based technologies have become, as a number of proponents of the use of the technology, ““an essential component of the language acquisition strategic toolbox” (Robin, 2007).

Being a strategic tool for the acquisition of English as a second language is emphasized in the integrated features developed into web-based applications. While previous applications emphasized on input as one part of the communication channel, later applications emphasized both input and output, enabling the user of the web-based application to be interactive and provide an enabling environment for the learner and the teacher to attain language acquisition goals set by the learner. It is therefore critical to note that web-based applications provide a human-to-human interaction via the computer as a medium of communication. One is compelled to conclude that the use of computers in the acquisition of English as a second language transcends time, environment, and other factors that diminish the capability of the learner enrolled in ESL classes and access to social interactions. However, a number of shortcomings experienced the acquisition of English as a second language motivated researchers and developers of the applications in seeking for other alternative methods using web-based applications to address effectively the problems encountered in ESL using web-based applications. These includes the use of visual aids and other features that ensure the student moves from dependent to independent construction of understanding and development in the use of web-based technologies. The instructional approach involves instructional aids, which use visual aids, voice recordings that teach the adult student to practice communicating through the spoken word, and providing a number of opportunities to practice whatever the student has been learning in the physical environment. As already mentioned elsewhere in the paper, students get opportunity to practice by through a structured approach where they apply their knowledge to put the elements together to communicate meaning.

However, the approach also proposes the use of a structured approach to attain the communication goal. In addition to that, proponents of the approach also argue that the methodology also uses imitation, intensity, and responsiveness as a strategy to attain learner set goals. Another argument in support of the strategy is to use free practice that involves dialogue. Dialogue also involves information exchange, which also involves dialogue and role-play. However, other theories that might fall under the constructivist theory agree with this approach and seem to focus on the use of the method to make the learner become proficient in the study of English as a second language. One of the benefits gained from the use of the computer-based applications is interactions. Interaction enables dialogue and is one form of social interaction where the student applies one’s acquired communication skills in English Language as a second language. However, not all adults in the ESL class become proficient in English language. Some of them might become proficient within a shorter period compared with others who might delay. Therefore, it becomes fair to conclude that “beginners can only produce very limited utterances, especially at the beginning of their studies, so they require a larger number of stimuli and more structured activities to extract the little language they can produce” (Rosell-Aguilar, 2005). However, the validity of the conclusion is based on practical experience.

Other researchers propose and emphasize that ““For language learning, a key element is the synchronized activation of the auditory, phonological, and visual systems in the brain” (Knowles, 2004a). It is commonly agreed among researchers that learning based on the stimuli of the brain using web-based applications has the ability to activate differential activities in the brain. These activities provide neural activities that cause the student to develop a mental picture of what has been learnt, thus making the knowledge indelible in the mind of the student. However, the same proponents argue that practice enables the student to retain the new the structures that have been learnt in the English Language acquisition using web-based applications. Thus, the learner is able to retain the linguistic structure in the brain for a long time. That also helps the student in the acquisition of oral proficiency. However, recommendations by other researchers shows that the student should devote their time to practice by repeating exact words and phrases they have learnt using the web-based application. The students do the repetitions by beginning with shallow repetitions and ending with deep repetitions. That enables the student to apply the language structure while doing modifications in linguistic structures. The modifications of linguistic structures are done in new context that the student finds himself or herself exposed.

Therefore, available literature shows that web-based applications should be design to assist the student in the process of English Language presentations and structured practice to attain language proficiency. In addition to that, the student should be taken through the complex components of the language using the web-based application to attain the level of proficiency where one is able to use complex components of the language, which range from simple repetitions to complex repetitions of the use of the components. That provides the student with practice opportunities to use the simple to the complex structure of the language to attain success in the language. It also provides the student with an opportunity for individualized growth and use of the vocabulary and syntactical structure of the language in different situations. It also provides the learner with the opportunity to practice to apply the English Language knowledge in a social context. However, there is need to internalize the structure of English Language components to become effective in practical application of the knowledge. Internalization of the knowledge makes the student become effective and acquires the skills that make their application more accurate and acquire a proficient level of fluency in using the language to communicate in the spoken form.

Error Correction and Feedback

Further studies on the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language shows that web-based applications provide an excellent platform to enable error correction and feedback. Error correction and feedback are some of the essential components that are critical in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. Feedback provides the student with the opportunity to track their progress and know what they are doing. That is because the student needs to know what they are doing correctly and where they are going wrong in order to improve on what they have done wrongly. From the above argument, one can conclude that feedback is generally a critical and important component in the acquisition of English Language as second language. Therefore, feedback is viewed as one of the most effective forms of teaching students taking English as a second language. However, researchers seem to disagree not the most effective form of feedback (Brosvic et al, 2006; Felix, 2004; Hincks, 2003; Mathan, 2005; Neri, Cucchiarini & Strik, 2001; Tsutsui, 2004). Some researchers contend that feedback should be implicit. Implicit feedback is a situation where the student is uninformed about an error they have made. The student is not told whether an utterance is correct or incorrect. On the other hand, explicit feedback calls for the learner to be informed directly on an error they have made in the application of the English Language they have acquired. In addition to that, researchers contend on the immediacy of feedback, by arguing that feedback should be either immediate or delayed. Web-based applications should provide the flexibility and features to accommodate different types of feedback. However, it is important to examine what language specialists proponents say.

Among the proponents on feedback include Brosvic, Epstein, Cook & Dihoff (2006) and Felix, (2004) assert that negative feedback can provide demotivate the student, therefore, be detrimental to the progress of the student rather than providing positive motivation in the acquisition of the second language. Hiwever, negative feedback is commonly seen as an approach that discourages the learner in engaging in active communication and interaction in a social environment, therefore, demotivating the student from continuing with the ESL acquisition program (White, 2003; Trahey & White, 1993). However, negative feedback has played a significant role in the acquisition of English as a second language as illustrated in the following argument. “The kind of knowledge to be learned, the kind of evidence presented to the learner, the situation in which the learning takes place and the cognitive capabilities of the learner all play a part in the efficient or non-efficient use of negative evidence” (Schachter, 1991). From that argument, it is clear that the cognitive abilities of the student and the learning environment are important aspects in determining the value of negative feedback. Therefore, negative feedback can also provide positive development of the student in the acquisition of the second language. However, to exhaustively examine the impact of negative feedback on the student, it is crucial to study some research studies by authors who have ventured into that field. One of the authors who conducted extensive research into the value of negative feedback was (Long, 1998). Long (1998) conducted studies to identify the effects of negative feedback on the progress of the student by categorizing it into three.

Negative feedback, according to Long (1998) falls into implicit feedback which occurred due to communication breakdown, explicit feedback in the form of recast, and overcorrections. Carroll (2001) took the studies further by adding to what Long (1998) has discovered were the effects of negative feedback by establish the fact that negative feedback provided students with the opportunities to improve in the acquisition of the second language. According to the new findings, negative feedback could help students identify their weakness and learn “information associated with individual lexical items”, induce “abstract linguistic generalizations” (Carroll, 2001) to help them restructure their syntax and grammatical progress in the language. Other research findings showed that students could be enables by negative feedback to identify problematic areas in the acquisition of English as a second language with a better learning effect than when negative feedback is not provided. Negative feedback is provided to the student in ESL acquisition programs using web-based applications that have integrated features that support the feedback process. Other researchers have agreed that negative feedback is also available in free conversations, classroom interactions; task based interactions, and on web-based interactions. Negative feedback is a diverse approach is used diversely to address student needs in diverse environments. However, researchers agree that web-based applications provide varied methods of providing feedback for the student to allow them grow in their acquisition proficiency. That has also been the position of authors including (Ehsani, 1998; Hansen, 2006; & Neri et al, 2002b).

Studies by Ehsani and Knodt (1998), Hansen (2006), and Neri et al, (2002b), who have researched into proposition by English Language specialists on feedback, identify at least four underlying principles on feedback. Feedback, according to their findings should be understood clearly and comprehended by the student, should have meaning and elicit some kind of action in the student, it should enable the student identify their errors or where they are correct, and should explain where the student has gone wrong or where a student is correct. The findings point out that feedback should provide the student information on where they have gone wrong and why they are wrong, and should enable the student to discover the correct path to follow in the study. Therefore, it should provide the student with the ability to provide the correct response by making corrections on previous errors. In so doing, the student is able to develop language competencies required. However, these feedbacks can be either implicit or explicit. It is therefore critical to examine the types of feedbacks that students are subjected to and identify the need for the web-based applications to have integrated features that provide the student with the ability to examine feedback from their teachers to make corrections and grow in English Language acquisition proficiency (Hansen, 2006; & Neri et al, 2002b).

In an attempt to examine the kind of feedback that is appropriate for the adult student, Neri (2001) and Tsutsui (2004), in their studies, realized number feedback classifications. They realized that feedback can be explicit in which the teacher reformulates the utterances by the student when making a speech in English Language as a second language. These, according to the linguistic experts are recasting the student’s utterances. Another form of feedback realized in the study included the elicitation. Elicitation requires that the teacher provide a response from a reformulation of the students in asking questions. That also draws on metalinguistic clues, repetition, and clarification of request. Experts agree that recasting is one form of implicit feedback where the student is not informed about any error and given the correct form of a statement in English to correct the statement on their own (Hansen, 2006; & Neri et al, 2002b). One of the methods of delivery involving implicit feedback is for the learner to monitor the teacher or instructor and observe the kind of utterances made of a particular word. Then, the student is able to make corrections to make appropriate utterances by making observations on the utterances made by the instructor and correcting error made by the student. Web-based applications provide such capabilities and features to support teaching English as a second language. This method of feedback that enables the students to learn from mistakes they have made is similar to the face-to-face interaction methods of teaching and correcting errors that students make. However, it is critically important for teachers and students to examine the role of feedback for the student enrolled in the English Language acquisition of a second language.

Tsutsui (2004) and Neri et al., (2002b) studied immediate and delayed feedback and attempted to determine which of the two approaches of feedback students valued most. According to their findings, immediate feedback was valued most compared with delayed feedback. Immediate feedback was identified to provide effective learning and improve performance in the acquisition of English as a second language. Findings showed that delayed feedbacks were ineffective in enabling the acquisition of linguistic performance for the adult student. However, when web-based applications were used appropriately, they could enable interaction between the teacher and the student to provide immediate response. Researchers have established the fact that delayed feedback fails to connect the student with instructor’s feedback to the performance.

Therefore, the time lag experienced between feedback and performance makes the student unable to remember the usage of some of the vocabularies and language components they have studied. However, this problem is circumvented by use of web-based applications. In general, therefore, web-based applications provide features that allow for immediate or delayed feedback, depending on the ability of the teacher to use the applications in making appropriate responses. Areas that require feedback not only include error correction of the spoken language, but also of pronunciation feedback. Studies show that “correct usage of supra-segmental features such as intonation and stress has been shown to improve the syntactic and semantic intelligibility of spoken language (Ehsani, 1998). Studies conducted by Neri (2002b) are summarized in the following statement that “the learner is not able to notice the discrepancies between the sounds (s) he produces and the correct target sounds” (Neri, 2002b). That sentiment is related to the constructivism theory, which requires that learners be focused during the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language to understand the language and use it. However, there is need to study the web development environments to determine a number of issues related to the use of web-based technologies by the adult student in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. One of the web-based applications is the web 2.0 learning environment.

Connectivism Theory

Siemens (2004) considers the connectivism theoretical approach as one of the appropriate theories to address the digital age of learning. According to Siemens (2004), the weaknesses inherent in other theories such as behavioral problems and cognition are addressed in the connectivism theory and address the needs of the digital age in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. That is also based on the assumptions and practical evidence that technology, integrated into web-based applications performs a number of operations such as cognitive operations, which were previously developed by adult learners. Typically, the connectivism theory links the success of the web 2.0 technologies by taking the role of the instructor in performing certain operations when the instructor is unavailable. The connectivism theory’s underlying principle is that learning is not limited to the individual adult enrolled in the acquisition of English Language as a second language, but is also an external activity that requires the support of integrated applications. Siemens (2004) regards the connectivism theory as “A Learning Theory for the Digital Age‟ p.3. Therefore, the theory has underlying principles that web-based applications such as web 2.0 draw on in the implementation of the web-based applications in the acquisition of English Language as a second language.

These principles include Siemens’s (2004) argument that both learning and knowledge are characterized by diversity of opinion. Siemens (2004) asserts further that learning draws on information nodes with links between themselves and learning does not reside only in human beings, but also resides in applications. Another connectivism principle proposed by Siemens (2004) is that the motivation to know more is critical. Siemens (2004) affirms that learning draws on continuous learning and which requires nurturing and maintenance for successful application of the technology. the connectivism theory regards the ability to link between ideas and fields as a core competency with current and up-to-date information playing a critical role in the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language by the adult students. The theory further asserts itself on the need for competence in decision-making, since not all that one chooses to study today is right tomorrow. Connectivism, therefore, is regarded typically as a networked learning. In the context of the current study, connectivism can be regarded as a theory that enables adult students and their teachers to establish a network between themselves in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. That is explained further in the statement “We derive our competence from forming connections” (Siemens, 2004). Therefore, the network becomes a source of knowledge for the student adult learner in the language acquisition process. That is also supported by the fact that human mind is limited with the cognitive load which might be too great for the human mind.

One approach used to define the connectivism theory is the assumptions about the theory. The theory captures and integrates concepts from other theories. These theories include the complexity, self-organization, and chaos. Chaos is defined in the breakdown of predictability and the defiance of order. However, chaos exist in the mind of the learner since hidden patterns exist that need to be recognized by the learner. Therefore, the adult learner is required, according to the connectivism theory, to address the challenges of recognizing hidden patterns during the acquisition of English Language as a second language. Therefore, the process of recognizing hidden patterns is a complex process, which is influenced by unpredictable factors. Researchers regard the complex process of learning to result to a product of desirable and of good quality. Therefore, the quality of the outcome from the web-based learning based on the connectivism theory is explained in the number of nodes linking knowledge to the adult learner, the size of the network formed by the links, and the data that is contributed by each network in the links. Siemens (2005) has provided extensive discussions on what constitutes a node. According to Siemens (2005), nodes can exist in the form of words, thoughts, and feelings.

These nodes combine and form a community of networks that are connected using web-based applications. Therefore, linked nodes provide an environment that fosters growth in knowledge, eventually ending up in enabling network learning. However, the strength of the connections varies in strength. The strength depends on individual motivation to use the web-based application in the acquisition of English as a second language. On the other hand, the frequency of connections and the strength of the connections provide a rich environment for the adult learner enrolled in the acquisition of English as a second language. However, the network needs to be defined by an individual. That is because each individual node’s popularity and usage depends on the content and learning outcomes that others are bound to benefit from. Thus, one of the principal characteristics of web 2.0 technologies is the rich environment where users are able to create their own information and present it on a shared platform. That makes the idea of self-centered learning become a possibility. That is summarized in the following statement ““Hence, connectivism constitutes a pragmatic conception of learning that actively draws upon the societal changes to learning and consequently integrates them into learning processes. Web 2.0 (social software) instruments hence become increasingly relevant as they promote perfectly an exchange of knowledge and the development of competencies in networks and on the web” (Erpenbeck & Sauter, 2007).

After discussing the underlying principles of the connectivism theory in relation to web 2.0 technologies for the acquisition of English as a second language by adult learners, it is important to study web 2.0 technologies that support the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language by adult learners.

Research Methodology

The current research aims to establish underlying facts and their implications on the use of web-based technology for adult learning English Language as a Second Language in ESL acquisition programs. It is a social research that borrows from other disciplines to establish empirical evidence of the facts related to adults in ESL acquisition programs. The study is a social research that draws on the theories and literature associated with English language acquisition and the use of web-based (Patton, 2002; Kumar, 1996; Gay, & Diehl, 1992).

The framework in the study is based on variables that have positive and negative implications on adults in ESL Acquisition programs. Typically, the objective of the framework is to provide the basis for answering the research questions identified in the introduction section of the paper. Typically, the research methodology seeks to answer the research questions on adults in web-based ESL acquisition programs (Odendahl & Shaw, 2002; Patton, 2002).

In practice, the paper will draw on various theories related to the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language (ESL) by adults at different levels of English Language Acquisition program, the acquisition progress, and the motivation behind adults being involved in the acquisition of the second language. Typically, the literature and the theoretical propositions are rational statements formulated by researchers and experts in the field of research with the aim to explain underlying reasons for any observation or outcome. In this case, the outcome is the level of competence attained by the adult student, attainment of the learning objectives, and other variables in the acquisition of English as a second language using web-based application.

A statistical analysis of the data collected will provide the basis for supporting the theories, literature, and other assumptions made in relation to adults in English Language Acquisition programs. The data collected in the study has its underlying rationale on the behavior and relationship between the variables in the study, which underlie the motivation, cognition, lexical competencies, and other elements on the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language (Odendahl & Shaw, 2002).

It is crucial to note that different factors have significant implications on adults’ acquisition of English as a second language. Additional factors considered when conducting the study included a comprehensive and detailed understanding of the contribution of web-based applications as a tool that supports the cognition process and development of the adults mind in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. Typically, cognition is a process that has strong relationship between the acquisition of English as a second language recognized as form-meaning mappings that are entrenched in the mind of the student. In addition to that, the cognition process is one of the crucial factors of developing skills in English as a second language and is an evaluation benchmark strongly correlated to construction of the language. It is therefore crucial for an application’s score index to show features and support for the cognition development in the adult student’s mind. Typically, that should also show string student performance score, enhanced skills performance score, and high application performance index for the current study. Typically, the above factors have a direct relationship with the productivity of an application in inculcating English Language acquisition skills and high English Language proficiency (Odendahl & Shaw, 2002).

It is crucial to identify, develop, and test the theories associated with the methodology used in conducting a research in view of adults in web-based applications in the acquisition of English as a Second Language. Therefore, it is crucial to identify the beginning or starting point in formulating the mathematical relationship that is used to test and statistically analyze data that was collected in the study. The whole research spectrum paradigm supports the facts about formulating a theory with the underlying foundation being empirical evidence. Empirical evidence will draw on propositions already identified in the study above. That will lead to a theoretical formulation that will influence the outcome of the study on the conceptual abstract level of study (Odendahl & Shaw, 2002).

Different tools used to test theories associated with the performance of adults on web-based ESL acquisition programs will serves as the basis of the study leading to a thorough comprehension of the study. It is crucial to identify the fact that the theories associated with data collection, analysis, and validation needs discussions to evaluate them for their significant use in the current study. Thus, it is crucial to study the theories underlying the methodologies associated with data collection and analysis specifically associated with adults in web-based applications in the acquisition of English as a second language (Odendahl & Shaw, 2002).

Testing Underlying Theories

“The function of a research design is to ensure that the evidence obtained enables us to answer the initial question as unambiguously as possible” (Creswell, 1994). A logical inquiry entails searching for concrete evidence to answer the research questions on the use of web-based applications for adults in ESL acquisition programs. Thus, the design will enable accurate description for the use of web-based programs for adults in ESL acquisition programs for the period a student takes ESL acquisition classes. It should be clear at this point that the design heavily draws on questionnaires administered to adult students and other stakeholders such as teachers in the ESL programs. Respective respondents include both adults in ESL acquisition programs on web-based applications.

The study will also be will be informed through observations as one of the methods in the study, document analysis that forms the basis of providing evidence on motivation, cognition psychology, lexical competence, and interactive nature of the web-based applications (Creswell, 1994). On the other hand, it is crucial to consider a wide range of factors with their implications on teachers and adult students in ESL acquisition programs. It is crucial when conducting the study to identify the type of questionnaires to administer and the approach used to administer the questionnaires to respective respondents. On the other hand, it was deemed crucial to differentiate the research design from research the methods used in the study to avoid introducing cross sectional errors that sometimes characterize a research design. In addition to that, the study used some case studies, and typical applications, and some theoretical perspectives to explicitly differentiate between experimental researches not defined in the study and case study (Creswell, 1994).

Tools

Interviews

Another tool, identified for use in the study was interviews. Different people participated in the interviews. In addition to that, a wide range of issues were considered when administering interviews. It was however, important to keep information provided with confidentiality to ensure that their privacy was preserved as agreed prior to the interviews (Odendahl & Shaw, 2002). Among those presented in the interviews were teachers involved in providing instructions to adult students on ESL acquisition programs in web-based applications. However, it was crucial to establish the validity if interviews in providing reliable data for the current study. Typically, the reliability of interviews is based on the fidelity and perspectives of the interviewer. The interviewers in this case are the researcher or a team member recruited into the research team. These interviewers are people taken to training before commencing the data collection exercise.

The teachers, the adult students, and other third parties directly or indirectly affected by the study were among the sources of data used in the study. Typically, the population using web-based applications were used to identify the problems associated with the use of web-based applications in the ESL acquisition programs. However, that does not that include standards against which the quality of teaching and the productivity of the teacher are measured. Thus, it is important to conclude that that a number of problems can be associated with the use of interviews as data gathering instruments. Typically, different authors concur on different problems that interviews present as data gathering instruments (Odendahl & Shaw, 2002). One of the problems is persistence of record noted to occur in the same direction. The argument is that the interviewer is usually subject to the subjectivity of the subject to interview. In the current study, observations showed that the initial use of interviews registered validity problems with a high degree of persistence. The persistence problem noted included a biasness on the use of web-based applications based on interviewee attitude toward adults on web-based applications in ESL acquisition programs (Odendahl & Shaw, 2002).

Questionnaires

One of the critical tools used in the current study was a questionnaire. Questionnaires were administered on population that had been identified to capture the data critical to the study. Typically, data collection from the target population was characterized a range of elements that included cognition, lexical competence, support features for positive and negative feedback, interactivity of the web-based application, availability of the application, and the response rates. Other items that were considered salient to support adults in web-based applications included features integrated into the web-based applications that support memory, cognition, lexical development, images, program recasts, features that support the association of words, repetitive practice, application availability, interactive use of the application, and the quality of input content. The data collected from the population identified in the study was critical to inform the study based on the elements that were used in the study (Chang & Schallert, 2005; Odendahl & Shaw, 2002). However, the above-mentioned items are among the other items used in the study (Odendahl & Shaw, 2002).

To obtain valid results, it was crucial to evaluate the questionnaire as a data-gathering tool to confirm its validity for use in the study. The questionnaire was identified as the most appropriate data-gathering tool for use in the study based on its relative advantage to the case under investigation. Among the benefits associated with the use of a questionnaire included its convenience in administering to the respondents.

Though questionnaires was the basic component in the study, interviews at various points were used to make significant contributions to the research in question. In addition to the use of interviews, document analysis formed an additional backbone to the study as mentioned elsewhere in the paper. Questionnaires and interviews were used together to benefit from the synergy associated with using both tools in the acquisition of data.

Typically, besides the documents detailing the level of English Language competence of adults in ESL acquisition programs, it was crucial that the applications support interactivity, and integrate the functionalities that support activity. In addition to that, it should enable the adult student to practice, provide the abilities for the student to acquire lexical competence of English as a second language, and integrate the features that allow for high quality inputs and outputs. In addition to that, it is crucial for the application to have the features that support the adult student in the acquisition process to develop in the cognition process in ESL acquisition program using web-based applications (Odendahl & Shaw, 2002).

On the other hand, it is important to comment that the study was characteristically longitudinal and involved a cross sectional design. One key element in the cross sectional design is that the approach draws from different research designs, with the questionnaire as a dominant and common tool for use in the study. The study also incorporated an analysis of documents available for the study. Other salient features that were investigated that web-based applications support in the acquisition of English as a Second Language included individualized content. These features support intrinsic motivation, collaboration, feedback, access to authentic materials, interfaces that enable interactive use of the applications, teacher interactions with the student, the teacher’s presence, application layout, application that supports satisfactory response rates, support for other learning activities, and applications that are simple to use while offering high quality interactivity with the teacher and the adult student. On the other hand, the support for high quality inputs and outputs were additional salient features that were factored into the research. Thus, the research design integrated these elements and other approaches of conducting research in the acquisition of data for analytical purposes. However, it is crucial to examine in detail the theoretical perspectives on the use of the questionnaire as a data-gathering tool (Odendahl & Shaw, 2002).

Questionnaire Survey

In theory, a questionnaire is a tool used to capture information from various respondents in a population targeted for the study. According to Xiao (2002), a questionnaire is a well thought out document with statements to which respondents provide feedback on their perceptions about a specified situation. Questionnaires come in different designs and are purposely designed to fulfill a specific purpose in a study (Ankrah, 2007). One important and critical characteristic of a questionnaire is that it is an evaluation tool administered after the occurrence of an event. Events in this case include the use of web-based applications in ESL acquisition programs. Typically, that is also in response to other events such as the outcome from the English Language as acquisition process. However, a critical analysis of the situations in which the questionnaires could be administered indicates that questionnaires at times can be administered even before the occurrence of an event.

In the current study, the questionnaires served a critical purpose of capturing data relevant to the study. The data that was captured for analysis applied to teachers in the acquisition program, adult students in the ESL acquisition program on web-based applications, and others affected by the outcome of the use of web-based applications in ESL acquisition programs

The questionnaires administered were designed with a high degree of clarity not to leave any ambiguity in the mind of the respondent. Typically, questionnaires were used to gather data relevant to the study to attain the ultimate aim of the study. The aim of the study was to study adults in web-based applications in ESL acquisition programs. Typically, the aim involved examining the entire issue of adults in ESL acquisition programs, and attempts to comprehend the support these applications provide the adult in ESL acquisition programs. The questionnaires therefore were used to generate data that was analyzed to reinforce the rationale for using web-based applications for adults in ESL acquisition programs.

Questionnaires were identifiably the most appropriate tools to use in the current study due to the benefits associated with their use. One of the critical benefits associated with questionnaires are their applicability and flexibility of use in different learning and teaching environments.

It is important to design the questionnaire based on the problems associated with the acquisition of English as a second language other variables associated with the study. One critical component incorporated into the questionnaire design is the aim of the study. To formulate the study, therefore, a theoretical proposition will be inform the approach as detailed below. In theory, to design a good questionnaire, other issues to consider include the need for acquiring lexical competence in the ESL acquisition programs and the need for the web-based applications to support the ESL acquisition process. and identification of the kind of data to be collected, and whom the data is to be collected from. Typically, the population under investigation critically influenced the outcomes of the questionnaires. The actual environment dictates that the questionnaire has to address various and specific issues and factors that will, when analyzed, provide a strong case for a use of web-based applications in teaching adults in the ESL acquisition programs.

Questionnaire Design

In theory, a questionnaire design should be well drawn beforehand with careful considerations emphasized on at the planning stage for the types and kind of questions to pause to the respondents (Creswell, 1994). The respondents and the kind of information to collects from the respondents also influence the questionnaire at the design stage. In addition to that, the kind of response elicited due to the content represented in the questions should be carefully considered. That allows the researcher to consider the kind of sampling to use and the target population. In addition to that, it is of critical importance to consider the fact that questions paused should be unambiguous and should be expressed in clear and simple language. In addition to that, the questions should be presented in detail for clarity, precision, and to ensure the questions are straight to the point (Creswell, 1994). Typically, the issues mentioned above are reflected in the format after which the questions are designed. On the other hand, the format used for the questionnaire presents the general layout of the questions and the logic that they are arranged with on the paper. Importantly, questions should be logically arranged not to confuse the respondent, but allow the respondent provide answers in a methodical manner (Creswell, 1994).

A general observation is that simple questions are always placed at the beginning of the document. In addition to that, the designer of the questionnaire ensures that the questions remain simple, clear and to the point, thus, avoiding any complexity in their design. On the other hand, the sequence of the questions considered and their layout examined for consistency with the case under investigation (Creswell, 1994).

It is important to conduct a test on the questions to identify any weak points for corrective actions. Once the pre-tests on the questionnaires administered on adults on web ESL acquisition programs is completed, then corrections are done on the questions contained in the questionnaire prior to their large-scale application in the field under investigation.

Specific consideration of the environment under investigations is indicative of the design of the questions that target each respondent based on the kind of data the questionnaire to capture. One other consideration factored into the design of the questionnaires included different theories that contributed to the ESL acquisition programs. These included cognition, motivation, and the use of web-based applications, at different levels of the learning process. Moreover considered in the design were end-users of the web-based infrastructure and the adult users of the web-based applications during the first phase of the construction process.

During the questionnaire design process, it was critical to consider equality issues that accounted for gender, age, occupation of the adult student, the goals in the learning process, and other related variables that could influence the outcome in the learning process.

It was important when administering questionnaires to consider personal feeling people have when being asked questions related to age, gender, and educational levels. It was deemed vital to keep confidential the information once it had been made available depending on the applicability of the information to the research (Creswell, 1994).

Concerning the context of the study, it was important to examine one other characteristic of questionnaires. A typical characteristic of questionnaires is the level of confidence respondents accorded respondents. Respondents need assurance about the confidentiality of the information they provide without any negative implications on their well-being. In addition to that, the questionnaire should clearly state the reason for the information captured into the questionnaire and where the information is to be used (Creswell, 1994).

However, it was also worth identifying the fact that questionnaires are susceptible to low or high response rates. It was therefore the responsibility of the one conducting the survey to ensure response rates are maximized. Various methods for maximizing responses include providing an introductory statement about the questionnaire and its intended purpose, and a mode of delivery that is cost free to the respondent. On the other hand, when responses rare not forthcoming particularly after two weeks expire from the date they were posted to the respondents, it is important to resend the questionnaires and reminder letters.

In the case for the use of web-based application sin ESL acquisition programs. , the responses were high due to a number of factors. Among them included the facts that respondents were informed about the survey under consideration and the implications of the web-based applications in the ESL acquisition programs on the remaining phases of ESL acquisition lifecycle and other ESL acquisition programs. Many respondents were free to participate in the survey. In addition to that, teachers particularly at the each phase of the ESL acquisition implementation program were also integrated into the study in providing information related to ESL acquisition programs for adults. However, difficulties were experienced with some teachers who had never used web-based applications as instructional methods of teaching English as a second language. However, other teachers staff were supportive of the move as they realized the rationale to incorporate a web-based applications in ESL acquisition programs to improve the level of performance and quality of knowledge in ESL acquisition.

The advantages and disadvantages of questionnaires as data gathering tools were considered in relation to the adults in web-based applications in ESL acquisition programs. In addition to that, the advantages and disadvantages were also informed from theoretical perspectives of the merits and demerits of using questionnaires as survey tools (Creswell, 1994).

Among the driving factors that made questionnaires appropriate tools to use included the flexibility, convenience, and the objectivity of administered questionnaires. In particular, questionnaires were identified to be instruments that had the advantage of being standard; therefore, the processing time for the resulting data was convenient and less complex. On the other hand, a large population sample could be covered in the study without the need to redesign the questions administered in the study (Creswell, 1994).

However, various disadvantages were identified with the use of questionnaires. In theory, open-ended questions are difficulty to analyze, as they are highly subjective. On the other hand, closed ended questions are specific and smaller amounts of data are made available or processing. In addition to that, respondents may find it difficult to respond when given long-winded questionnaires with the possibility of providing superficial answers.

Sampling Technique

Based on the current study on adults on ESL acquisition programs, it was deemed wise to ensure the samples used in the study were well presented in the study. That required the use of different techniques to identify specific characteristics of the samples that were desirable to be covered in the study. Different techniques were employed to ensure accurate and fair distribution and representations in the sampling frame. These included ensuring that each element with unique characteristics are included in the study. In addition to that, each element identified in the study has to be included in the frame to ensure fair representations (Best & Kahn, 1993).

In theory, however, a number of problems are bound to arise during the study related to the approach of the sampling frame used in the study. However, the issues were identified prior to the study and methods put in place to ensure corrective measures were in put place to avoid the effects of inclusion and exclusion. These measures included identifying the elements that were missing and methods of incorporating them into the frame. Another approach included identifying members not defined in the study that might have erroneously been included into the study to remove them. In addition to that, the process involved removing duplicate entries by examining and querying the statistical tool used for data entry, and reducing the effects of group clusters, which may have negative implications on the groups to be examined (Cohen & Manion, 1980).

Distribution of the Sample Mean

To ensure higher levels of accuracy are attained, the distribution of the sample mean was subjected to statistical and validity tests. One of the approaches to ensure the sample distribution concurred with the requirements of data analysis; the distribution of the sample mean was subjected to a statistic test. The sample was randomly selected from selected the population of independent observations. Replacements were done to ensure consistency of the characteristics of the samples remained consistent (Bogdan & Biklen, 1992).

The mean of the samples selected for tests were calculated to obtain the sample mean under investigation. The mean of each of the samples were calculated from the entire distribution to form a sampling distribution of the mean.

A theoretical approach of calculating the variance and mean of the distributions of the mean can then be calculated based on the following mathematical relations. Different statistics methods can be used to calculate the distribution of the sample mean based on expectation mathematics.

In the mathematical relation, a population equivalent to X is selected for the study. Suppose the expectation for the population is E(X) =µ and suppose the variance of the sample under investigation is Var (X) =α^2. On the other hand, suppose, n independent observations were made during the study for the population X, then from the study,

E(X1)= µ1, E(X2)= µ2, a condition uniformly characteristically repeating itself until the nth item, represented as E(Xn)= µn.

On the other hand, the variance of the mean mathematically related as Var(X)=α^2 is applicable for the entire series that terminates at Var(Xn)=α2

Thus, the sample mean specific to the population under investigation can be obtained as indicated in the following relation:

Distribution of the Sample Mean

where n is the sample size, and E(¥) is the sample mean. Deductively, therefore, the sample mean E(¥) is equivalent to µ.

On the other hand, the variance of the data can be calculated based on the equation Var(¥)=α2/n.

Thus, the standard deviation can be calculated based on the equation, (α2/n)1/2 which is also the standard error of the distribution.

Data Collection for the Study

Data collection for the survey began with accurate description of the population to be surveyed. An accurate description of the population could provide a clear and focused approach to obtaining the actual data to be analysed in the study. In theory and practise, the target population included the following:

  1. Teachers working on web-based applications.
  2. Teachers who have not used web-based applications as an instructional mode of delivery.
  3. The adult students at different phases in ESL acquisition programs.

After the categories were identified in the study, the researcher narrowed down to specific elements for inquiry in the study. These included the distribution of the adults in ESL acquisition programs, and the sizes of the adult population. On the other hand, teachers were examined in the inquiry specific to their specific level of tasks using web-based applications in ESL acquisition programs. First, teachers working at different levels of ESL acquisition programs were isolated in the study, and then questionnaires were administered to each of the teachers specific to their level of instructional tasks done by each individual teacher. The period the teacher has provided instructions; either short or long were also considered in the study. However, some items and individuals were not included in the study. These included a listing of participating individuals as identified in the following description.

To ensure the results yielded using the questionnaire are valid, and the questionnaire could address all the issues raised in the research, the researcher initiated a pilot study to address the issues. In effect, the pilot study was one technique to address problems associated with earlier research techniques on performance evaluation of web-based applications in ESL acquisition programs.

The four major areas of the pilot study as a baseline to inform the study included the establishing underlying motivation for the study, motivational factors, lexical competence of the adult student after the acquisition process, and the support offered on web-based applications in cognition development of the adult student. Other areas identified and included in the study were features integrated into the applications that that support interactive use of the application by the student and the teacher, features that allowed the teacher’s presence to be felt by the student, interface design that allowed flexibility in the use of the web-based. Other support items in the applications that support the instructional mode teacher adopted in teaching the adult student. The relationship between the indicators and the performance of adult after the acquisition program, the ranking, and implications of each performance indicator on the performance of student in the acquisition program, and the relationship between the performance of the adult student and the competence acquired after the studies.

Validity of Research

The research relied on both qualitative and quantitative research techniques (Babour, 1998).The qualitative paradigm is strongly embedded in recursive evaluation of the findings and is based on the research problem and the research questions (Bogdan & Biklen, 1998). In addition to that, qualitative research is open to a variety of inquisitive techniques. On the other hand, quantitative validation of the research draws heavily on measures against standard values embedded in a scaled measurement. In practise and in theory, both approaches can sanguinely inform the validity of a research.

In practise and in theory, deviations from the initial expectations based on the progress of the study are one critical element that indicates the study is incurring problems. In addition to that, the occurrence is evident when the initial assumption made about a specific study appears to be in conflict with new or current trends in the study, thus, failing to establish a level of consistency in the findings.

Different approaches can be used to evaluate the validity of the research and the data used in the study. Different techniques specifically applicable to qualitative and quantitative research techniques account for the validity of a research project (Healy & Perry, 2000).

In theory, different approaches for evaluating the validity of a qualitative research have been formulated. One of the approaches is the transactional approach. The transactional approach is an actively interactive technique calling for interactive participation of the researcher and team players. Several techniques can be used to validate the research based on the transactional qualitative research study. One such is an inclusion of an array of participants who interactively play the role of member checking at every phase of the research project progress (Healy & Perry, 2000).

On the other hand, a transformational approach, which is critically vital, is another approach to evaluating the validity of a qualitative research. Findings based on the transformational approach indicate that the approach to rely on extreme cases where the validity of the findings essentially register a radical deviation from the eventual idea of the research (Campbell, 1996).

However, many researchers have also presented other viewed about evaluating the validity of the findings of the research (Campbell, 1996). Arguments against such approaches indicate that, measures at times are entirely based on the paradigm under investigation, thus integrating the error due to the measure into results. In addition to that, measurements sometimes provide overlapping modes of inquiry to which the research and validation of the inquiry are based. However it is important to incorporate the scene under consideration in order to inform the study about the validity of the findings. On the other hand, it is important to be fair to scientific and paradigms of validation techniques by incorporating a holistic view of the paradigms for evaluating the validity of a research and other related measures (Campbell, 1996).

Different authors present different views on theoretical propositions about transformational validity in which the transactional approach can be used to validate a research. In that respect, a continuum view about the positivists argument that validity can never be achieved is one critical component of the study. The approach indicates validity to be relative and need to be pursued endlessly. In order to bolster integrity of the findings in a research as an approach for validating the research, triangulation should be integrated in the study with member checking thus bolstering the integrity of the research (Crocker & Algina, 1986).

One approach when using transformational validity for evaluating the validity f the findings is to begin by identifying a specific problem upon which the validation is to be done, then, making explicit the value of the validity of the findings. One critical element here is the crisis of representation defining the findings (Glesne & Peshkin, 1992). Typically, a meaning can be derived from the results by indicating that multipronged suggestions from the study. One could conclude that the issue of validity may draw on the perspective of the researcher based on internal and external experiences. In addition to that, the views about validity of the research are represented in the multiple dimensions of the inquiry in question. In dispute, therefore, validity cannot entirely rely on a specific technique or measure since views or different researchers are also subjective to an individual’s perceptions (Creswell & Miller, 2000).

On the other hand, some theories of research validation have been fronted in the science of examining validity of an event or a situation. One such argument is based on powers as against which validity of an investigation has to be based. However, power is inherent with many other situations particular problems related to social issues such as psychological power. Psychological has a critical role in influencing the validity of the research since psychological interference was evident as different attitude based on different teachers and application developers for ESL acquisition programs came into being (Crocker & Algina, 1986).

When considering validity from the social dimensions, it may rather be difficulty to validate the findings without controversies. Therefore, the importance to incorporate scientific methods of validating a study as detailed below (Denzin, 1978).To further evaluate the results of the study have and maintain a level of consistency and remain valid, other sources of data are used to identify any deviations and inconsistencies. One other hand, critical sources of knowledge for comparing data are based on the literature review about similar data yielded in other studies similar to the current study. In particular, the study has to show evidence of high applicability in the web-based applications in ESL acquisition programs and focusing on adults in the acquisition of English as ascend language.

On the other hand validity will be ensured and evaluated by conducting an extensive study and comparison of various field notes and other information yielded in the research. In addition to that, the validity of the tools and findings will have to be subjected to independent researchers who may scrutinize the data to ensure valid data entries by comparing the data with original data. Thus, a team approach is critical at this point in data validation and verification (Glesne & Peshkin, 1992; Denzin & Lincoln, 1998). On the other hand, the hypotheses form one of the vital tools for validating the data and results of the study. A deviation from the hypotheses findings indicates problems with the results (Denzin & Lincoln, 1998).

Different instruments will be used to capture information and present it form encoding before it is analysed to draw conclusions. The degree of scientific accuracy of the instruments is of critical importance ass it has serious implications on the outcome of the study.

On the other hand, the validity and reliability of the instruments and tools sued to analyse data captured during the investigations is also of critical importance. One critical instrument used in the study is a questionnaire. Other instruments used to capture data and analyse it mathematically include a range of statistical tools such as SPSS software, Microsoft excel, among others. In this case, Microsoft excel will be used for capturing and analysing data. Of specific importance is the fact that Microsoft excel as one of the statistical tools version 2010 integrates several statistical tools and a lot of flexibility. The software incorporates various statically formulas which can be used to manipulate data and provide the required results instantly (Denzin & Lincoln, 1998).

The rationale of using excel as a data analysis tool is its widespread use and the level many people are conversant in using the tool. In addition to that, the software tool is flexible and accommodative of people who have had little exposure in using software tools for statistical analysis.

Reliability of Instrument

The reliability of an instrument used in research is an indicator of the quality of the outcome of the research and the reliability of the measurements and results obtained from an inquiry. A reliable instrument has to be developed through a process that identifies weak points and attempts to minimise the occurrence of error in the measuring instrument. Reliability therefore is a critical tool in evaluating the consistency of the instrument used in the study and the accuracy of the scores resulting from the use of the instrument. Thus, the internal and external consistency of an instrument is of critical importance (Denzin & Lincoln, 1998). Several issues have been related to the validity and reliability if instruments used in research.

The responsiveness of the measuring instrument to the changes in the variables that influence the performance of an individual or a project in the public construction projects in Abuja is of primary concern in this case. Data sources for identifying and establishing the need for a web-based applications ESL acquisition programs for adults learning English as a second language, primarily involved the use of questionnaires and a literature review. In addition to that, a critical examination of documents with specific information will also form the basis of data acquisition in the study. Measures using information from occupants of the houses that were completed in the first phase of construction project sill constitute examination of the level of satisfaction or dissatisfaction of the occupants with the houses. In addition to that, issues related to the size of the family, the size of the rooms, internal and external spaces, and other space requirements will sanguinely inform the validations. On the other hand, document analysis will draw heavily on records that have been developed through surveys conducted after the houses were occupied after the first phase was completed.

In theory and practise, reliability estimates will be used to evaluate the level or degree of stability of the estimates based on questionnaire responses, the internal consistency of the measures, which indicate the equivalence of sets used in the study, and their interrelated reliability. The coefficient of reliability is measured on the range between 0.1 and 1.0. When measures of reliability reflect higher values, the degree of reliability is equally high (Denzin & Lincoln, 1998).

Reliability draws on the stability of the measures, which draws on the results obtained by administering similar tests to an agent at two different points in time and evaluating the outcome from both tests. If both tests are similar, then the test is valid otherwise is disqualified. It is worth noting that the interval between which the tests are to be administered should be far between in order to allow time for the agents to be modified and a similar test administered again (Denzin & Lincoln, 1998).

On the other hand, the internal consistence can be measured based on one of the widely proven measures. One such tool is the Cronbach’s alpha tool. The measure is used to calculate the average number of items that are interrelated on a given scale. On the other hand, it is advisable to use multiple items when conducting a test on the validity of a measure as a single item may nit yield reliable values. Several items yielding several measures contribute significantly to the degree of accuracy and reliability of a measure (Denzin & Lincoln, 1998).

On the other hand, the inter-reliability is indicative of the consistence of findings when based on results from two sets of individuals using the same instrument. Each of the participants has to be isolated when conducting the tests to evaluate results from both parties by ensuring non-interference. Thus, the ratings are entirely independent. That implying no interaction or collaboration should occur between any of the participants. Thus, for the instrument to be considered reliable, a test of the correlation between the results has to be done. If the correlation coefficient is high, then the reliability is high, else, the instrument is unreliable. Tools have been developed to determine the agreement of the correlation coefficients. One such instrument is the Cohen Kappa instrument.

Observations are basically good for the above detailed reliability measuring instruments. However, some measurements require the judgment of an expert in a specific discipline. Thus, the validity of the results draw on the reliability of an instrument by fulfilling the objective intended for the study to from the research on the role the web-based applications in the ESL acquisition programs play by identifiably including measures that can be relied upon.

The respondents are human and subject to the subjectivity of the human mind. In addition to that, questionnaires can be subjected to internal and external consistence evaluations to establish their consistence in the field of study. In theory, calculations based on a mathematical relation between different variables used in the study are expressed below:

α = k cov /var/( 1 + (k – 1)cov / var). In this relation, the number of items included in the measurement scale is represented by k, the covariance between the items is represented by cov, and var represents the average value of the variance between the items. In practise and specific to the current study for the need for web-based applications in teaching English as a second language, the formula is simplified into the following relation:

α = kr/(1 + (k – 1)r)

In the above mathematical relation, r represents the number of correlations between the problems in the construction industry, which crystallizes the significance of using a web-based applications in ESL acquisition programs for evaluating the rate, quality, and cost schedule of using the applications in ESL acquisition programs. It is important to identify limitations to the above mathematical relation specific to the Crotch Alpha scale.

Content validity

The validity of the content in the questionnaires is important in determining the true nature of the effects of the problems associated with a lack of effective web-based applications in ESL acquisition programs, a standard against which the performance of different tasks is evaluated. According to Babour (1998), each item of the study contained in the questionnaire should be clear and logically organized to enable clear presentations of the facts involved in the study (Bogdan & Biklen, 1998). In addition to that, the samples used in the study should be clearly representative of the entire population under investigations (Glesne & Peshkin, 1992). To ensure the content covers all areas subjected to the study, expert advice usually sought for at this stage.

Responsiveness

Constructs used in the study may show deviations from expected results. Such deviations may result from the use of data that may interfere with the actual results (Campbell, 1996). These may be noise variables included but not captured in the research design. Typically, therefore, it is of critical importance to identify and select the most appropriate scales for use that target the specific issue under investigation. On the other hand, the validity of the instrument in use has to be selected following specified procedures and standards (Charles, 1995). The selection criteria was to address the problems associated with the lack of a web-based applications that addressed the needs of adults in ESL acquisition programs, and the solutions and benefits that can be experienced in the study. On the other hand, it is important to identify and select the specific measuring instrument specific to the study (Eisner, 1991). Problems with the lack of a an effective web-based application program in ESL acquisition programs will be important for adult students, teachers, and other stakeholders in teaching adults. In addition to that, problems associated with the lack of an effective and efficient web-based application will address the approach used in the selection criteria (Charles, 1995).

Selecting the Instrument

These instruments were selected based on specific areas of application in the construction industry. The instruments were intended to specifically address learning needs of the adult student on web-based applications, application productivity in the ESL acquisition programs, and the entire learning process. However, it is important to establish if the instrument have previously been used. In addition to that, the constructs used in the study have to be examined if they consist of a desirable level of reliability and tested to be valid. In addition to that, the population used in the investigation should rely on an instrument that is strongly reliable and valid. It is important, however, to note that the instruments used in the study have not to be developed from scratch, as it could be a tedious and expensive time consuming process.

Selection Procedure

Different researchers who have conducted research on the use of web-based applications in ESL acquisition programs for adults have come up with different instrument selection criteria. To address the issue, it is important to use the following evaluation questions in the research.

  1. Evaluate currently available instruments, which have been applied, for research in the web-based applications. The measure should be used for addressing constructs used in the study. In addition to that, an operational definition of the study should be incorporated into the study. It is important to conduct a literature review on the reliability of the instrument and results based on previous results where the instrument has been used.
  2. Conceptually define the measuring instrument and evaluate the criteria used to conceptually define the instrument (Creswell & Miller, 2000).
  3. In social research, the researcher has to identify discrepancies inherent in the instruments conceptually designed against actual instruments being selected (Creswell & Miller, 2000). In addition to that, the conceptual framework has to be evaluated on the fitness of the instrument used in the study. In addition to that, the data generated using the questionnaires will require an examination of the actual data to be used for the evaluation process. Thus, a better understanding of the need for a web-based applications in ESL acquisition programs and items incorporate into the study addressed. Talking with the teachers and the adult students and application developers about their progress at work, continuous reviews to ensure continuous quality improvements can be documented using a chart or any data-capturing tool (Creswell & Miller, 2000).
  4. The evidence of validity of the instrument and the level of reliability has to be established to inform the findings. In addition to that, the study has to be informed about various approaches and methods that have been used to evaluate the measure against well-established validity evaluation instruments (Creswell & Miller, 2000). Many valid test methods have been developed in the construction industry to establish the internal consistency of the measuring instrument with different testing strategies incorporated into the study. Examples include content validity and concurrence tests that have been conducted to validate the, measuring instrument after tests of validity have been confirmed on a similar population (Creswell & Miller, 2000).
  5. On the other hand, previous research that has been conducted sung the instrument has to be examined in detail to identify if ceiling or floor effects were evidently registered when the instrument was used. In addition to that, the reliability of the instruments used have to draw from previous experience if records are evident of missing data or items from previous use (Creswell & Miller, 2000).
  6. On the other hand, the instrument has to measure the degree of responsiveness to determine the level of accuracy and effectiveness in addressing the issue of the technical validity of the results.
  7. The cost incurred in using the instrument is another element to consider. On the other hand, the approach used to administer the instrument and in this case a mail questionnaire has to be evaluated to establish the costs associated with administering the instrument to the target population (Crocker & Algina, 1986).
  8. Other issues to consider include the level of response and ability for the participants to accept the instrument as a data capturing approach.
  9. The approach used to administer the instrument on the subjects is a critical issue of concern. Some subjects may accept the approach and the instrument while other may not be conformable to use the instrument. The level of acceptability has to be established and evaluated to inform the confidentiality of the study. Thus, the instrument may require expertise to administer and the level of expertise and judge required need to be evaluated (Crocker & Algina, 1986).

In theory and practise several approaches to the study of the use of measurements have been used establish the response of items used in a study. In addition to that, different researchers identify the use of different measures to conduct social research. Some of the responses and measures are based on self-report (Crocker & Algina, 1986). Typically, researchers rely on the use of questionnaires administered on target subjects and the responses the subjects provide and the items used on the construct in the study (Crocker & Algina, 1986).

Self-Measurements

The theoretical approach to self-measurements is based on identifying the level of productivity of an individual in the use of web-based applications as an instructional method of teaching adults. The behaviour of the subjects under investigations in response to the questions posed in the questionnaire, and the effects of different variables such as features associated with the use of the applications (Davies & Dodd, 2002). In the case for the use of web-based applications in ESL acquisition programs, the teacher, the adult student, and the need to motivate the teacher and the student to perform tasks to lead to higher levels of quality and effectiveness significantly contribute to the self-measurement process. That implies that the teacher or student can provide responses on one’s perceptions and attitude toward the use of the applications (Davies & Dodd, 2002). Other factors related to individual measurements include the level of knowledge of the individual student in the use of the web-based applications in ESL acquisition programs. In addition to that, the skills of the student in the use of web-based applications, personal experience, and the skill of the teachers in using the applications as instructional delivery modes. According to the theory, the applicability of the approach in the construction industry is therefore based on the response required by the researcher. In theory, estimations should be used when capturing data from the subjects based on specific aspects of the study (Denzin, 1978).

Examples include the level of productivity of the individual worker, the level of productivity of the management, the aspects of total quality management as a tool to.

Data Coding and Data Entry

Both, qualitative and quantitative data collection methods were applied to collect and address data requirements for the study. According to Naoum (2007), both types of data are characteristically different. A significant number of scientific research studies generally agree qualitative research to be highly subjective (Patton, 2001). According to Patton (2001), qualitative research is subjectively naturalistic and produces results that do not rely on statistical methods to collect and analyze. On the other hand, quantitative data, according to Stenbacka (2001), Strauss and Corbin (1990), and Wainer and Braun (1988) data should be assigned numerical values depending on the, measurement scale and area of application.

Measurement Scale

Scientific research is grounded on measurable facts, which are worth integrating into the social research, in this case, the use of web-based applications in ESL acquisition programs. Each item in the standard scales and measures to be evaluated for validity and reliability (Denzin, 1978). Different researchers have used different measuring instruments with different scales. Each of the measures is specifically designed to address specific measures with each addressing a specific item in ESL acquisition programs (Denzin, 1978). Thus, measurements scales significantly vary widely based on either a qualitative or quantitative research methods applied in this inquiry. The research was addressed using both qualitative and quantitative inquiries. In addition to the above mentioned methods of inquiry, the area addressed using a particular performance measure. That is the reason that the construction industry is an aggregate of a variety of disciplines each playing a critical role toward successful project implementation.

On the other hand, it is worth noting that the reliability a validity of instruments used in the research has to be verified against well-established industry standard measures. It is therefore important to investigate the reliability and validity of quantitative research and qualitative research to inform the study.

According to Joppe (2000), reliability is “The extent to which results are consistent over time and an accurate representation of the total population under study is referred to as reliability and if the results of a study can be reproduced under a similar methodology, then the research instrument is considered to be reliable” (p. 1). Joppe (2000) and Kirk and Miller (1986) reinforce the sense of replicability and repeatability as the baseline for the validity and reliability of results. On the other hand, quantitative research methods can only be evidently valid in a research if the results from an inquiry remain consistently the same. On the other hand, if the results remain stable and unchangeable over a long period, and show no deviations from previous measures in the same industry, then the measure are reliable. Thus, the need for the research to validate research results against standard construction industry measures (Denzin, 1978).

On the other hand, the validity issue was applicable on research instruments used in the inquiry to capture response from different participants. Thus, questionnaires, observations, and interview formed critical tools for quantitative study. On the other hand, qualitative research, which formed a significant portion of the study, focused on literature reviews on performance of web-based applications borrowed into the ESL acquisition programs.

Different researchers form different perspectives have viewed the concept of validity differently. Some of the theoretical propositions on validity have been viewed with different perspectives based on the paradigm being engaged. Seale (1999), a researcher into the validity of a research seeks to crystallize and strike a middle ground, the foundation upon which validity of a research instrument lies. On the other hand, the need to understand validity in the context of the use of web-based applications in ESL acquisition for adults learning English as a second language draws on the need to reinforce the need to establish the truth about a specific measure. Joppe (2000) and Winter (2000) deviate from the classical approach of viewing validity to the modern approach of viewing validity as a measure of the truthfulness of a research. In the current study, the validity is a measure of the truthfulness of the measures used to evaluate the performance of web-based applciations. On the other hand, in the opinions of Wainer and Braun (1998) the truthfulness of tools used to capture data from research participants provides ground on specific data, where, and when to capture the data.

Validity and reliability measures, therefore, will cover sub disciplines integrated into the performance evaluation of ESL acquisition programs for adults to include, total quality performance measures, risk performance measurements, stakeholder performance measures, productivity performance measures, and quality performance measures.

Different researchers have identified different methods for testing the validity and quality of performance measures. One of methods include SMART test developed by the University of California. Each letter in the text “SMART” has a special meaning for different performance measures. S in SMART represents the specificity of a measure and the extent to which a measure shows reliability and level of focus. On the other hand, M represents “measure” and shows the quantification of a measure in relation inputs and outputs in a construction project. A, in SMART represents the level of attainability of a performance measure, while R represents the cost effectiveness of a performance measure. On the other hand, T represents timeliness and the extent to which a performance measure represents project completion.

Performance measures usually applied at the top-level management, the strategic and operational levels with each measure aimed at ensuring project schedule remains on course, no cost overruns incurred during project implementation, and project quality meets end user requirements. According to Uher, 2003), the degree of accomplishment in every phase of project implementation should remain within the timeline in the Abuja Master Plan.

Different factors should be measured in the research pertaining to the research instruments used in the study with implications on top-level management, project level, and operational levelof a construction firm. These include input measures, outcome measures, impact measures, process measures, behavioural measures, lagging measures, and leading measures.

Input measures define human resource capital and financial resources the client committed into the use of web-based applications in ESL acquisition programs to produce the desirable outcomes. Human resource measurements include measures of productivity and other inputs into the construction industry.

On the other hand, process measures provide a standard measure against which teaching in ESL acquisition program proceeds with a number of intermediate steps. On the other hand, output measures provide a standard method of evaluating teaching and the English Language acquisition milestones for which management and employees at all levels of project execution are infrastructure completed in the first phase of project implantation.

It was vital to measure the outcomes against end user expectations of the web-based applications in ESL acquisition programs. On the other hand, lagging measures related to cost and schedule overruns due to the effects of low performance of the web-based applications on the adult students other related variables had significant impact on the outcome in the use of web-based applications in ESL acquisition programs for adults.

Underlying Theories

One of the theories that point to the successful use of web-based applications in the study and teaching of English as a second language to adults is the constructivist theory. The constructivist theory is a combination of different theoretical approaches in educational philosophy and is defined as “a general educational philosophy, encompassing several different learning theories” (Mattar, 2010). The underlying strength of the theoretical approach is the use of web-based applications in ESL acquisition programs for adults taking English as a second language. These theoretical propositions on the acquisition of English as a second language draw on the use of technologies such as web 2.0 technologies in the acquisition of the second language. One of the researchers in the use of web 2.0 technologies in ESL acquisition programs, Dede (2008) has argued that technology can be used to cause changes in the acquisition of the language from classical epistemology of education to a new epistemology. That position is further reinforced by the position held by the author that use of web 2.0 technologies have an underlying strength in active learning of the pedagogies, situated learning, constructivism, and co-creation of knowledge. It is further argued that technology in the context of web-based applications provide different ways in which adult students access information while teachers find new ways of delivering content and instructions to the student. These theories have their underlying strength in their use as instructional delivery concepts for the adult student in web-based applications.

The constructivism theory is among the crucial theories of learning that combines a number of other theories in the ESL acquisition programs. The theory points out that the learner and the teacher need to understand the actual needs of the adult student to be effective in the delivery of instructional materials to the student. Therefore, the learning activities by the student have to focus on the needs and difficulties the adult student experiences in the acquisition of the second language. According to the theory, it is a requirement that when using web-based applications as an instructional platform, the teacher should understand the real and actual interests of the adult student, and endeavor to incorporate actual activities that focus and address the problems experienced by the adult student. It is therefore important for the teacher to understand the student and understand the reality in relation to the needs and the student and the motivating reasons to enroll in ESL acquisition programs. It is also important, according to the theory to combine an understanding of the student and the learning environment and the technologies used in the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language by the adult student. Once the components are understood, it becomes necessary to evaluate the components that constitute the entire theory a whole.

It is also crucial to understand the actual learning environment in relation to the common points of agreement between the sub components of the theory identified above. According to a number of researchers, it is agreed that the key points that are in common agreement include the fact that the learning environment should be tailored to and focused on the learner and be learner. It is further argued that, learning is active involving a number of interactions, that use of language in the learning process is crucial to effective learning, and that teachers need to understand their learners in order to make the process effective and efficient.

According to Tam (2000), learning using web-based applications is a process that draws on the strength of the constructivism theory. The theory asserts the use of technology as a tool to effectively infuse knowledge in the adult student. According to Tam (2000), learners are supposed to function as self-motivated and self-directed in their learning experiences. In addition to that, learners are required to study interactively and collaboratively in the acquisition of the second language. Therefore, the use of web-based applications are viewed as a transformative force that has changed the learning environment into a subjective construction of knowledge and meaning derived and based on individual experiences. It is therefore important to examine each of the theories that constitute the constructivism theory and the role each f the theoretical components of the constructivism theory play in the acquisition of English as a second language on web-based applications.

According to Tam (2000), situated cognition is one of the components of the constructivism theory. Situated cognition places a lot of emphasis on the importance of context in the English Language acquisition process. According to the theory, thinking is viewed as occurring in the physical and social context. In this case, cognition is a process that includes thinking, learning, and knowing. Thus, cognition, according to Tam (2000) cognition involves an approach the adult uses to interact with objects and structures of situations. Therefore, cognition is not simply a process for manipulating symbols in the acquisition of knowledge, but an interactive social and intellectual activity for the acquisition of the language as a second language.

Many authors theoretically agree that learning and cognition are fundamental requirements to the acquisition process situated in context, culture, and situations which constitute the learning environment. According to Brown, Collins, and Duguid (1989), knowledge is the key component that indexes situations that are the underlying causes of knowledge. On the other hand, it is known that learning is an enculturation process with social interactions as an underlying support for the acquisition process.

It has been argued that presentation is key component in the acquisition of English as a second language by the adult student. Presentation can be attained on web-based applications based on the features integrated into the applications. Presentations arise out of the activities that are performed by the student on web-based applications during the acquisition process. This therefore is authentic situations where the students undertake their studies. The applications try to infuse the culture in the student on authentic learning and through the interactive nature of the applications and the lessons provided on web-based applications.

One of the researchers who have taken the study of the theories associated with the constructivism theory, Clancey (1994), argues that objects and activities used in the learning process are constructed in the context of activities. Representational forms are given meaning and developed in a continuous process based on different factors. The creation process draws its strengths from the interactions with the environment from which information is created (Shih, Shyu & Chen, 1997). Then it becomes the responsibility of the teacher and the student to study how the materials change the perceptions of the student and the teacher. It is a complex process that involves the mind and draws on the process of coordinating perceptions and which is interactive and subjective. Thus, the strength of the learning process draws on the instructional design based on interpersonal gestures and other interactive activities.

Wilson and Myers (2000) were some of the authors who studied the link between cognition and situation learning. In their studies, they realized that networking is one of the fundamental requirements of the web-based applications learning environment. Here, according to Wilson and Myers (2000) provide an environment that cultivates authentic practices in the learning and acquisition of the second language. Typically, the structure of the world provides an environment that influences the behavior of the adult in using web-based applications in the acquisition of English as a second language. That is because the field of study is wide and varied. The variations are in the form of social interactions and cognition processes in the mind. According to the studies by the authors, it has been argued that cognition occurs at individual and social levels and that is viewed from the perspectives of psychological and linguistic theories among other theories.

From the perspective of cognition, it is broadly argued that individual cognition can be placed on the social and physical context of the interactions that can be attained using tools such as web-based applications that adults use in the acquisition of English Language as a second language.

Another theoretical approach that is crucial in understanding the use of web-based applications in the acquisition of English as a second language by the adult student is the activity theory. The activity theory places emphasis on the use of activities as the most critical underlying element in the learning process. In this theory, the learner engages in the use of activities to support the learning process. Under the activity theory, learning is viewed as an activity that enables the student grow in knowledge of the second language and activities are seen as part of the construction process in the acquisition f the second language. Thus, the theory is regarded as fostering activities that are not passive undertakings as approaches of growing in the structure of the second language. Jonassen (2000) has researched on the activity theory to identify how these theories are incorporated in the design of web-based applications that are used in the ESL acquisition programs for adults. In Jonassen’s (2000) studies, the theory was first defined as philosophical framework, which combines activities with conscious learning in the acquisition of the second language. Thus, the structure of activities contributes significantly in the development of the language of the student engaged in ESL acquisition programs based. It is viewed as part of the instructional process.

In theory, activities are supported on an environment that is composed of tools and objects that support an interactive environment, of which web-based applications provide. According to researcher, theory is applicable in an environment that constitutes rules, communities, objects, and tools that enable people to interact. All the elements constituted in the interactive learning environment, which constitutes rules and theories that, are associated in an interactive environment to create meaning. Therefore, an interactive environment created in the learning process that associates the elements with meaning. Thus, it is evident that web-based applications provide an environment for interaction between the teacher and the student for the student to develop their language skills. However, the environment must operate with a set of rules, procedures, and objects that enable interaction between the student and the teacher. Typically, such features are inbuilt into web-based applications to attain the ultimate goal of delivering institutions and content to the student and enable interactivity between the adult student and the teacher.

Another theory that supports the use of web-based applications for the acquisition of the second language is the experiential learning theory. According to the Experiential Learning theory, emphasis is placed on the importance of learning. In the concept of experiential learning, practical knowledge is regarded as a tool toward the acquisition of the second language. Experience is regarded as a central component in the acquisition of the language, with a clear articulation of learning outcomes. In the context of the theory, that is attained by focusing on learner-centered approaches, which factor the leaner as being central to the learning process. The theory provides a basis for evaluating the teachers accountability in providing the student with instructions and reduces direct control on the student by the teacher. However, it enables students to evaluate their second language acquisition process by establishing interactions with the student, and feedback from the teacher.

One of the theories that have received criticism, but it is viewed as a philosophy of education that strongly links the student to the use of web-based applications. The constructivism theory factors education based on web-based applications and being sufficient to explain the use of technology in the acquisition of English as a second language. Here technology performs a number of tasks that include performing cognition processes, and enables interactivity, individualization of activities, and allows the link between the internal operating environment of the student and the external environment such as accessing information from databases using web-based applications.

According to the theory, cognition, which is a fundamental element in the acquisition process, is distributed among artifacts and learners. Thus, the capabilities of a cognitive devise can be used to perform a number of tasks much more efficiently than the human being. Bell and Winn (2000) researched on the use of applications to carry out instructional strategies in the use of web-based applications in a distributed learning environment.

In theory, cognition is crucial in the acquisition of the language as a second language by adults as it supports the acquisition of English as a second language. Cognition.

Findings and Discussion

Table 4.1: Questionnaire Distribution for the Study.

Questionnaire Distribution for teachers in ESL acquisition programs Federal States of The United States
Texas Arizona Nevada Oklahoma California Washington
No. of questionnaire distributed 166 107 89 139 103 150
No. of questionnaire returned 152 98 77 118 92 133
No. of questionnaire discarded 8 5 2 11 3 13
No. of questionnaire used for analysis 144 93 75 107 89 120
% Response rate with respect to distributed questionnaire 91.57 91.59 86.52 84.89 89.32 88.67
Questionnaire Distribution for Adult Students In ESL Acquisition Programs
No. of questionnaire distributed 99 67 52 90 55 85
No. of questionnaire returned 96 63 52 81 55 77
No. of questionnaire discarded 3 2 4
No. of questionnaire used for analysis 93 63 52 79 55 73
% Response rate with respect to distributed questionnaire 96.97 94.03 100 90 100 90.59

Table 4.2: Teachers perceptions of the impact of the factors affecting teaching of ESL programs in Texas state.

Factors affecting the use of web-based applications to teach adults in ESL acquisition programs N Sum Mean Rank Remark
Out of sequence work assignments 144 432 3.00 38 MS
Slow response to questions 144 426 2.96 44 MS
Immediate feedback 144 576 4.00 11 HS
Delayed feedback 144 645 4.48 5 VHS
Positive feedback 144 675 4.69 1 VHS
Application layout 144 531 3.69 19 HS
Negative feedback 144 672 4.67 3 VHS
Effective use of features of the application 144 537 3.73 17 HS
The frequency of using the application 144 534 3.71 18 HS
Preference in the use web-based applications 144 336 2.33 61 LS
Lack of periodic interactions with teachers and adult student 144 378 2.62 57 MS
Features usability incorporated into the web-based application 144 189 1.31 75 NS
Translations 144 421 2.92 48 MS
Adult student attrition rates 144 576 4.00 11 HS
Disregard of the application’s features 144 438 3.04 33 MS
Lack of big picture view on behalf of the adult student 144 381 2.65 53 MS
Poor communication between the teacher and the student 144 468 3.25 32 MS
Application breakdown during usage 144 519 3.60 22 HS
Frequency of usage of the application 144 416 2.89 49 MS
Environmental conditions 144 627 4.35 6 VHS
Misunderstanding between the teacher and the student 144 434 3.01 37 MS
Teacher turnover 144 436 3.03 35 MS
Student participation in decision making 144 574 3.99 13 HS
Communication delays 144 486 3.37 25 MS
Lack motivation using the web-based instructional mode 144 340 2.36 60 LS
Lack of teaching cognition programs 144 390 2.71 50 MS
Non provision of motivation for the teacher 144 330 2.29 66 LS
Lack of features for entertainment and recreation 144 388 2.69 52 MS
Lack of sufficient ESL training sessions 144 423 2.94 46 MS
Lack of interactive features to enable quick 144 474 3.29 30 MS
Support for vocabulary acquisition 144 429 2.98 40 MS
Target items for vocabulary acquisition 144 336 2.33 61 LS
Meaning focused tasks 144 195 1.35 72 NS
Features to enable students associate words with meaning 144 330 2.29 66 LS
Translation 144 381 2.65 53 MS
Use of paired associate learning support features 144 429 2.98 40 MS
Repeatitive tasks 144 423 2.94 46 MS
Memorizing words 144 436 3.03 35 MS
Misunderstanding by the student 144 330 2.29 66 LS
Lack of web-based tests 144 192 1.33 73 NS
Increase of flashcard learning 144 243 1.69 71 NS
Student absenteeism 144 288 2.00 70 LS
Student personal problems 144 474 3.29 30 MS
Lack of concentration 144 375 2.60 59 MS
Disputes 144 381 2.65 53 MS
Poor health of workers 144 333 2.31 65 LS
Attendance to social functions 144 432 3.00 38 MS
Memory of learnt words 144 582 4.04 8 HS
Delay in proving corrective feedback 144 294 2.04 69 LS
Failure to understand English as a second language 144 336 2.33 61 LS
Support for the cognition process 144 390 2.71 50 MS
Lexical competence 144 381 2.65 53 MS
Associating images with words 144 672 4.67 3 VHS
Associating images with meaning 144 570 3.96 15 HS
Cultural differences 144 477 3.31 27 MS
Application availability 144 525 3.65 21 HS
Correction delays 144 426 2.96 44 MS
Teacher interactive time 144 573 3.98 14 HS
Quality of input content 144 480 3.33 26 MS
Quality of output content 144 477 3.31 27 MS
Instructional methods 144 531 3.69 19 HS
Individualized control of the learning activity 144 378 2.62 57 MS
Availability of learning material 144 675 4.69 1 VHS
Poor material teaching quality 144 627 4.35 6 VHS
Application limitations 144 519 3.60 22 HS
Support for grammar acquisition 144 438 3.04 33 MS
Communication 144 570 3.96 15 HS
Associating meaning with words 144 429 2.98 40 MS
Acquisition goals and milestones 144 582 4.04 8 HS
Teacher student interaction time 144 477 3.31 27 MS
Stoppages because of lack of motivation from the student 144 192 1.33 73 NS
Application design complexity 144 336 2.33 61 NS
High quality of required outputs 144 489 3.40 24 HS
Confirmation checks 144 429 2.98 40 MS
Recasts capabilities 144 582 4.04 8 HS
Valid N (listwise) 144

Table 4.3: Student perception of the impact of factors affecting use of web-based applications in Nevada.

Factors affecting adult students in ESL acquisition programs N Sum Mean Rank Remark
Out of sequence task assignments 93 294 3.16 31
Slow response to questions 93 268 2.88 47
Quality of application 93 358 3.85 11
Recasts 93 369 3.97 6
Supervision 93 410 4.41 1
Application layout 93 343 3.69 17
Occupational education and training 93 366 3.94 7
Motivation 93 361 3.88 9
Application reputation 93 356 3.83 12
Misunderstanding between students and teachers 93 221 2.38 69
Lack of periodic meeting with the student 93 255 2.74 53
motivation 93 154 1.66 74
Application reputation 93 269 2.89 46
Time management 93 348 3.74 16
Attitude 93 258 2.77 50
Memory 93 265 2.85 48
Interactive communication 93 293 3.15 32
Application breakdown 93 281 3.02 41
Safety with the use of the application 93 252 2.71 55
Health and safety conditions 93 364 3.91 8
Features to support Lexical competence 93 237 2.55 61
Teacher turnover 93 299 3.22 29
Student involvement in decision making 93 370 3.98 5
Repetitive tasks 93 258 2.77 50
Application availability 93 230 2.47 64
Communicating meaning 93 248 2.67 57
Recasts 93 254 2.73 54
Content 93 288 3.10 35
Lack of training sessions 93 275 2.96 43
Input quality from the applications 93 271 2.91 44
Use mode 93 289 3.11 34
Support for association of words 93 285 3.06 38
Practical exercises 93 126 1.35 75
Lack of user experience 93 270 2.90 45
Lack of skills of the teacher 93 324 3.48 23
Incompetent supervisors 93 333 3.58 21
Individualized content 93 338 3.63 20
Features that support memory 93 215 2.31 71
Misunderstanding between the teacher and the adult student 93 227 2.44 67
Lack of competitive exercises 93 206 2.22 72
Learning objectives 93 242 2.60 60
Student absenteeism 93 258 2.77 50
Intrinsic motivation 93 321 3.45 25
Extrinsic motivation 93 217 2.33 70
Satisfaction 93 237 2.55 61
rewards 93 251 2.70 56
Attendance to social functions 93 292 3.14 33
Level of difficulty 93 350 3.76 15
Recasts 93 259 2.78 49
Different languages spoken by the teacher and the student 93 230 2.47 64
Personal weaknesses 93 308 3.31 26
External interference factors 93 296 3.18 30
Interaction features 93 287 3.09 36
Poor site design and layout 93 359 3.86 10
Cultural differences 93 224 2.41 68
Disruption of learning activities 93 306 3.29 27
Response delays 93 229 2.46 66
Lack of sufficient feedback 93 302 3.25 28
Poor access to learning materials 93 286 3.08 37
Interference 93 323 3.47 24
Instructional delivery methods 93 342 3.68 18
Negative feedback 93 248 2.67 57
Availability of teaching material 93 374 4.02 3
Poor material quality 93 339 3.65 19
Good material quality 93 245 2.63 59
Availability of lexical items 93 333 3.58 21
Lexical content 93 353 3.80 14
Authentic materials 93 282 3.03 40
Learning goals 93 374 4.02 3
Time devoted to ESL acquisition 93 278 2.99 42
Confirmation checks 93 171 1.84 73
Design complexity 93 235 2.53 63
High quality of required application 93 354 3.81 13
Change instructional mode of delivery 93 283 3.04 39
Specification and standardisation 93 404 4.34 2
Valid N (listwise) 93

Table 4.4: Student perception of the impact of factors affecting adult students in ESL acquisition programs in Oklahoma.

Factors affecting adult students in ESL acquisition programs N Sum Mean Rank Remark
Out of sequence work assignments 75 234 3.12 32
Slow response to questions 75 233 3.11 33
Quality of site management 75 290 3.87 3
Material availability 75 287 3.83 4
Supervision 75 270 3.60 14
Site layout 75 253 3.37 19
Occupational education and training 75 240 3.20 28
Student population and efficiency 75 275 3.67 10
Application reputation 75 284 3.79 7
Misunderstanding between teachers and adult students 75 159 2.12 65
Lack of periodic meeting with adult students 75 146 1.95 70
Poorly designed interfaces 75 173 2.31 63
Instructional mode of delivery 75 154 2.05 67
Application design 75 213 2.84 47
Poor quality materials 75 198 2.64 52
Lack of big picture view on behalf of the student 75 129 1.72 71
Poor communication 75 122 1.63 73
Application breakdowns 75 206 2.75 49
Interface design 75 173 2.31 63
Health and safety conditions of the application 75 245 3.27 24
Dispute between the student and the teacher 75 177 2.36 62
Teachers instructional mode 75 224 2.99 39
Teacher skills 75 189 2.52 56
Lexical items 75 272 3.63 13
Lack of teaching motivation system 75 336 4.48 1
Low response rates 75 232 3.09 34
Application complexity 75 287 3.83 4
User application skills 75 217 2.89 44
Lack of training sessions 75 179 2.39 60
Quality of input materials 75 285 3.80 6
Employment mode 75 188 2.51 58
Quality of output content 75 178 2.37 61
Modules 75 107 1.43 75
Lack of teacher experience 75 154 2.05 67
Lack of skills of the adult student in the use of the applications 75 128 1.71 72
Incompetent supervisors 75 120 1.60 74
Repetitive work 75 157 2.09 66
Memory support 75 189 2.52 56
Misunderstanding between teacher and students 75 211 2.81 48
Lack of competition support features 75 214 2.85 46
Lack of support features for cognition 75 228 3.04 37
student absenteeism 75 218 2.91 43
Personal weaknesses 75 235 3.13 30
Lack of motivational features 75 220 2.93 41
Disputes between the teacher and the student 75 231 3.08 36
Support features for lexical competence 75 228 3.04 37
Support for interactions between the student and the teacher 75 194 2.59 53
Blogging 75 256 3.41 18
Support features for interaction between the adult students 75 300 4.00 2
Different languages spoken on a project 75 274 3.65 11
Availability of the application 75 204 2.72 50
External interference factors 75 235 3.13 30
Individualized content 75 243 3.24 26
Lexical items 75 220 2.93 41
Cultural differences 75 203 2.71 51
Disputations between instruction delivery 75 216 2.88 45
Feedback delays 75 232 3.09 34
Negative feedback 75 244 3.25 25
Positive feedback 75 263 3.51 16
Interference 75 251 3.35 21
Instruction delivery method 75 274 3.65 11
Quality of input materials 75 188 2.51 58
Availability of material 75 249 3.32 23
Poor material quality 75 242 3.23 27
Application complexity 75 257 3.43 17
Availability of instructional materials 75 252 3.36 20
Personal weaknesses 75 224 2.99 39
Program recasts 75 251 3.35 21
teaching goals and milestones 75 240 3.20 28
Student goals and objectives 75 283 3.77 8
Positive feedback 75 194 2.59 53
Application design and usage complexity 75 191 2.55 55
High quality of required outputs 75 266 3.55 15
Instructional change approaches 75 149 1.99 69
Specification and standardization of the applications 75 278 3.71 9
Valid N (listwise) 75

Table 4.5: Students perception of the impact of factors affecting ESL acquisition programs on web-based applications in California.

Factors affecting students in ESL acquisition programs N Sum Mean Rank Remark
Out of sequence task assignments 107 342 3.20 31
Slow response to questions 107 301 2.81 48
Quality of site response 107 403 3.77 12
Material quality 107 377 3.52 22
Supervision of the student’s work 107 439 4.10 3
Site layout 107 401 3.75 14
Occupational education and training 107 429 4.01 5
Student population 107 402 3.76 13
Application reputation 107 408 3.81 11
Misunderstanding between student and teacher 107 233 2.18 70
Lack of periodic meeting with the student 107 290 2.71 53
Low interactivity between the student and the teacher 107 251 2.35 66
Lack of proper resource allocation 107 300 2.80 49
Lack of administrative support 107 398 3.72 15
Disregard of student’s progress 107 276 2.58 60
Lack of big picture view on behalf of the student 107 317 2.96 42
Poor communication 107 322 3.01 40
Application breakdown and availability 107 300 2.80 49
Individualized content 107 262 2.45 63
Health and safety conditions 107 390 3.64 20
Disputes with teachers and adult students 107 230 2.15 73
Teacher turnover 107 338 3.16 32
Student participation in decision making 107 454 4.24 2
Application support for grammar 107 256 2.39 64
Lack of adult student motivation system 107 249 2.33 68
Lack of teacher recognition programs 107 287 2.68 54
Lack of intrinsic motivation 107 331 3.09 35
Lack of recreation activities on the web-based applications 107 314 2.93 43
Lack of training sessions 107 355 3.32 27
Satisfaction with the web-based application 107 280 2.62 59
Rewards 107 351 3.28 28
Attitude toward the acquisition of English on web-based applications 107 344 3.21 30
Application support for different level of difficulty 107 147 1.37 75
Lack of adult student experience in use of web-based applications 107 324 3.03 38
Lack of skills in the part of the teacher in the use of web-based applications 107 391 3.65 19
Poor supervision 107 425 3.97 6
Repetitive work 107 388 3.63 21
Personal weaknesses 107 238 2.22 69
Misunderstanding among student 107 286 2.67 56
Lack of competition 107 233 2.18 70
Authentic materials 107 308 2.88 45
Student absenteeism 107 337 3.15 33
Application interface design 107 348 3.25 29
Interaction with the student 107 267 2.50 62
Poor quality materials 107 291 2.72 52
Good quality materials 107 287 2.68 54
Support for blogging 107 312 2.92 44
Student response rate 107 412 3.85 8
Teacher response rate 107 292 2.73 51
Availability of instructional materials 107 304 2.84 47
Application support for collaboration 107 362 3.38 24
Networking 107 357 3.34 26
Set up of the learning community 107 286 2.67 56
Poor site navigational features 107 409 3.82 9
Cultural differences 107 232 2.17 72
Personal weaknesses 107 337 3.15 33
Feedback delays 107 250 2.34 67
Negative feedback 107 330 3.08 36
Positive feedback 107 321 3.00 41
Interference 107 373 3.49 23
Instructional method 107 393 3.67 18
Support for blogging 107 285 2.66 58
Availability of instructional materials 107 409 3.82 9
Poor material quality 107 362 3.38 24
Application errors 107 254 2.37 65
Availability of images 107 395 3.69 17
Networking 107 396 3.70 16
Needed information not on curriculum 107 324 3.03 38
Learning goals and milestones 107 433 4.05 4
Collaborations 107 306 2.86 46
User skills for the web-based application 107 205 1.92 74
Design complexity 107 272 2.54 61
High quality of required outputs 107 423 3.95 7
Response rates 107 326 3.05 37
Specification and standardization of applications 107 477 4.46 1
Valid N (listwise) 107

4.6: Teacher perception of the impact of factors affecting adults in ESL acquisition programs in Nevada.

Factors affecting adult students in ESL acquisition programs N Sum Mean Rank Remark
Out of sequence work assignments 89 281 3.16 30
Slow response to questions 89 258 2.90 43
Quality of site set up 89 342 3.84 7
Material management 89 327 3.67 13
Supervision 89 360 4.04 3
Site layout 89 329 3.70 11
Occupational education and training 89 335 3.76 8
Interactivity between the teacher and the student 89 363 4.08 2
Application reputation 89 349 3.92 4
Misunderstanding between teachers and students 89 170 1.91 74
Lack of periodic meeting with teacher 89 197 2.21 68
Support for cognition activities 89 180 2.02 72
Lack of appropriate learning materials 89 232 2.61 57
Lack of teacher support 89 313 3.52 19
Support for lexical competence 89 234 2.63 56
Lack of big picture view on behalf of the student 89 211 2.37 63
Poor communication 89 211 2.37 63
Application breakdown 89 237 2.66 54
Support for association of words 89 211 2.37 63
Health and safety conditions 89 314 3.53 18
Disputes between the student and the teacher 89 188 2.11 70
Workers turnover, recruitment and changing crews 89 270 3.03 37
Student participation in decision making 89 317 3.56 17
Images 89 247 2.78 49
Intrinsic motivation 89 284 3.19 29
Support for practical exercises 89 235 2.64 55
Quality of input materials 89 293 3.29 23
Quality of output materials 89 260 2.92 41
Lack of training sessions 89 250 2.81 48
Individualized content 89 276 3.10 32
Student evaluation 89 274 3.08 36
Positive feedback 89 269 3.02 38
Negative feedback 89 103 1.16 75
Teacher presence 89 242 2.72 52
Lack of skills of the teacher in the use of web-based applications 89 277 3.11 31
Incompetent supervisors 89 292 3.28 24
Repetitive tasks 89 288 3.24 27
student dissatisfaction 89 175 1.97 73
Misunderstanding between students and teachers 89 226 2.54 59
Lack of competition 89 210 2.36 66
Learning activities 89 241 2.71 53
Student absenteeism 89 259 2.91 42
Teacher absenteeism 89 296 3.33 22
Alcoholism and drug abuse 89 210 2.36 66
Authentic materials 89 244 2.74 51
Support for program recasts 89 257 2.89 44
Support for collaboration 89 253 2.84 46
Personal weaknesses 89 332 3.73 10
Delayed feedback 89 269 3.02 38
Support for cognition development 89 252 2.83 47
Motivation 89 290 3.26 26
Attitude 89 291 3.27 25
Teacher interaction time 89 246 2.76 50
Poor site conditions 89 329 3.70 11
Cultural differences 89 197 2.21 68
Teacher presence 89 276 3.10 32
Positive feedback 89 219 2.46 62
Negative feedback 89 285 3.20 28
Poor feedback 89 275 3.09 35
External interference 89 308 3.46 20
Instruction delivery method 89 324 3.64 15
Support for association of words 89 232 2.61 57
Availability of teaching material 89 333 3.74 9
Poor quality input materials 89 298 3.35 21
Application errors 89 226 2.54 59
Confirmation checks 89 326 3.66 14
Repetitions 89 321 3.61 16
Interactions 89 276 3.10 32
Learning goals and milestones 89 349 3.92 4
Lexical items 89 269 3.02 38
Support for lexical development 89 184 2.07 71
Design complexity 89 226 2.54 59
High quality of required output 89 347 3.90 6
Collaboration 89 255 2.87 45
Specification and standardization of the web-based application 89 384 4.31 1
Valid N (listwise) 89

Table 4.7: Teachers perception of the impact of factors affecting adults in ESL acquisition programs in Oklahoma.

Factors affecting adult students in ESL acquisition programs N Sum Mean Rank Remark
Out of sequence work assignments 120 376 3.13 37
Slow response to questions 120 368 3.07 47
Quality of application interface 120 472 3.93 3
Frequency of feedback 120 458 3.82 7
Teacher supervision 120 465 3.87 5
Application layout 120 428 3.57 14
Occupational education and training 120 503 4.19 1
Efficient and effective of the application 120 390 3.25 31
Application reputation 120 420 3.50 19
Misunderstanding between teachers and adult students 120 405 3.37 25
Lack of periodic meeting with student 120 384 3.20 32
Teacher offer for frequent feedback 120 360 3.00 54
Shared learning activities 120 405 3.37 25
Mediating artifacts 120 435 3.63 12
Disregard of teacher’s productivity improvement suggestion 120 428 3.57 14
Teacher instructional delivery mode 120 439 3.66 8
Poor communication 120 405 3.38 24
Application breakdown 120 420 3.50 19
Teacher and adult student interactions 120 315 2.62 71
Health and safety conditions 120 405 3.37 25
Lexical items 120 361 3.01 51
Individualized learning envuir9nment 120 423 3.52 16
Student participation in decision making 120 438 3.65 10
Lack of motivation for the teacher 120 375 3.13 37
Lack of motivation for the student 120 367 3.06 48
Repetitive tasks 120 343 2.86 63
Non provision of authentic materials 120 374 3.12 43
Monitoring student acquisition progress 120 367 3.06 48
Lack of training sessions 120 344 2.87 57
Poorly designed input features 120 361 3.01 51
Development of the learning environment 120 261 2.17 74
Teacher presence 120 433 3.61 13
Support for discussions 120 231 1.93 75
Lack of adult student experience in the use of web-based applications 120 487 4.06 2
Lack of skills of the teacher in the use of web-based applications 120 462 3.85 6
Incompetent supervision 120 472 3.93 3
Repetitive work 120 439 3.66 8
Teacher presence 120 396 3.30 28
Misunderstanding between students and teachers 120 330 2.75 67
Lack of competition 120 328 2.73 68
Teacher absenteeism 120 312 2.60 72
Student absenteeism 120 344 2.87 57
Set up of the learning community 120 360 3.00 54
Learner engagement in acquisition 120 372 3.10 46
Learning environment 120 331 2.76 65
Personal weaknesses 120 423 3.52 16
Attendance to social functions 120 376 3.13 37
Attitude toward the use of web-based applications 120 331 2.76 65
Intrinsic motivation 120 344 2.87 57
Different languages spoken by the teacher and the student 120 359 2.99 56
Support for memorizing language 120 377 3.14 35
Positive feedback 120 332 2.77 64
Distance between responses 120 375 3.13 37
Poor site conditions 120 362 3.02 50
Cultural differences 120 344 2.87 57
Support for social interactivity 120 392 3.27 29
Feedback delays 120 374 3.12 43
Teacher skills in using web-based applications 120 419 3.49 21
Poor access to instructional materials 120 375 3.12 43
External interference 120 381 3.17 33
Lack of feedback 120 419 3.49 21
Poor feedback 120 375 3.13 37
Availability of learning material 120 379 3.16 34
Lack of teacher supervision 120 361 3.01 51
Application errors 120 316 2.63 70
Poor quality outputs 120 344 2.87 57
Poor quality inputs 120 345 2.87 57
Needed information not on application 120 328 2.73 68
learning goals and milestones 120 437 3.64 11
Lexical items 120 418 3.48 23
Support for lexical items 120 301 2.51 73
Design complexity of the application 120 377 3.14 35
High quality of required 120 392 3.27 29
Change in instructional methods 120 375 3.13 37
Specification and standardization 120 421 3.51 18
Valid N (listwise) 120

Table 4.8 : Summary of teachers’ perception of the impact of factors affecting adults in ESL acquaition programs in the five states.

Factros affaecting adults in ESL acquaition progams in ESL acquisition programs Impact Index
Texas Arizona Nevada Oklahoma Carlifornai Washington
Out of sequence work assignments 3.00 3.16 3.12 3.20 3.16 3.13
Slow response to questions 2.96 2.88 3.11 2.81 2.90 3.07
Quality of site layout 4.00 3.85 3.87 3.77 3.84 3.93
Material management 4.48 3.97 3.83 3.52 3.67 3.82
Supervision 4.69 4.41 3.60 4.10 4.04 3.87
Site layout 3.69 3.69 3.37 3.75 3.70 3.57
Occupational education and training 4.67 3.94 3.20 4.01 3.76 4.19
size and efficiency 3.73 3.88 3.67 3.76 4.08 3.25
Application reputation 3.71 3.83 3.79 3.81 3.92 3.50
Low interaction rates with the student 2.33 2.38 2.12 2.18 1.91 3.37
Lack of periodic meeting with student 2.62 2.74 1.95 2.71 2.21 3.20
Poor feedback 1.31 1.66 2.31 2.35 2.02 3.00
Lack of proper resource allocation 2.92 2.89 2.05 2.80 2.61 3.37
Proper management and administrative support 4.00 3.74 2.84 3.72 3.52 3.63
Disregard of teacher’s productivity improvement suggestion 3.04 2.77 2.64 2.58 2.63 3.57
Ineffective instructional methods 2.65 2.85 1.72 2.96 2.37 3.66
Poor communication 3.25 3.15 1.63 3.01 2.37 3.38
Application breakdown 3.60 3.02 2.75 2.80 2.66 3.50
Application interfaces 2.89 2.71 2.31 2.45 2.37 2.62
Health and safety conditions 4.35 3.91 3.27 3.64 3.53 3.37
Support for memory 3.01 2.55 2.36 2.15 2.11 3.01
Teacher turnover 3.03 3.22 2.99 3.16 3.03 3.52
student participation in decision making 3.99 3.98 2.52 4.24 3.56 3.65
Application layout 3.37 2.77 3.63 2.39 2.78 3.13
Lexical items 2.36 2.47 4.48 2.33 3.19 3.06
Features for lexical competence 2.71 2.67 3.09 2.68 2.64 2.86
High response rates 2.29 2.73 3.83 3.09 3.29 3.12
Low response rates 2.69 3.10 2.89 2.93 2.92 3.06
Lack of training sessions 2.94 2.96 2.39 3.32 2.81 2.87
Application availability 3.29 2.91 3.80 2.62 3.10 3.01
Good quality materials 2.98 3.11 2.51 3.28 3.08 2.17
Poor quality materials 2.33 3.06 2.37 3.21 3.02 3.61
Teacher instructional delivery mode 1.35 1.35 1.43 1.37 1.16 1.93
Lack of student experience on the use of the appalcition 2.29 2.90 2.05 3.03 2.72 4.06
Lack of skills of the teacher 2.65 3.48 1.71 3.65 3.11 3.85
Incompetent supervision 2.98 3.58 1.60 3.97 3.28 3.93
Repetitive work 2.94 3.63 2.09 3.63 3.24 3.66
student dissatisfaction 3.03 2.31 2.52 2.22 1.97 3.30
Misunderstanding between the student and the teacher 2.29 2.44 2.81 2.67 2.54 2.75
Application interfaces 1.33 2.22 2.85 2.18 2.36 2.73
Application complexity 1.69 2.60 3.04 2.88 2.71 2.60
Student absenteeism 2.00 2.77 2.91 3.15 2.91 2.87
Application layout 3.29 3.45 3.13 3.25 3.33 3.00
Collaborative use of the application 2.60 2.33 2.93 2.50 2.36 3.10
Disputes between the student and the teacher 2.65 2.55 3.08 2.72 2.74 2.76
Teacher skills 2.31 2.70 3.04 2.68 2.89 3.52
Social interactivity 3.00 3.14 2.59 2.92 2.84 3.13
Networking 4.04 3.76 3.41 3.85 3.73 2.76
Poor association of words on the application 2.04 2.78 4.00 2.73 3.02 2.87
Different languages spoken by teacher and student 2.33 2.47 3.65 2.84 2.83 2.99
Lexical items 2.71 3.31 2.72 3.38 3.26 3.14
Associating image with meaning 2.65 3.18 3.13 3.34 3.27 2.77
motivation 4.67 3.09 3.24 2.67 2.76 3.13
Poor application layout 3.96 3.86 2.93 3.82 3.70 3.02
Cultural differences 3.31 2.41 2.71 2.17 2.21 2.87
Disruption application services 3.65 3.29 2.88 3.15 3.10 3.27
Response delays 2.96 2.46 3.09 2.34 2.46 3.12
Working within a poorly designed interface 3.98 3.25 3.25 3.08 3.20 3.49
Poor access to work web-based applications 3.33 3.08 3.51 3.00 3.09 3.12
Interference from other external issues 3.31 3.47 3.35 3.49 3.46 3.17
Instructional delivery method 3.69 3.68 3.65 3.67 3.64 3.49
Not receiving directions and instructions from the teacher 2.62 2.67 2.51 2.66 2.61 3.13
Availability of web-based teaching materials 4.69 4.02 3.32 3.82 3.74 3.16
Poor instructional material quality 4.35 3.65 3.23 3.38 3.35 3.01
Application design features 3.60 2.63 3.43 2.37 2.54 2.63
Availability of drawings 3.04 3.58 3.36 3.69 3.66 2.87
Lack of supportive features for learning word structure 3.96 3.80 2.99 3.70 3.61 2.87
Needed information not on the applications 2.98 3.03 3.35 3.03 3.10 2.73
Teaching goals and milestones 4.04 4.02 3.20 4.05 3.92 3.64
Working overtime 3.31 2.99 3.77 2.86 3.02 3.48
Stoppages because of lack of understanding 1.33 1.84 2.59 1.92 2.07 2.51
Design complexity of the application 2.33 2.53 2.55 2.54 2.54 3.14
High quality of required works 3.40 3.81 3.55 3.95 3.90 3.27
Change orders 2.98 3.04 1.99 3.05 2.87 3.13
Specification and standardisation 4.04 4.34 3.71 4.46 4.31 3.51

Table 4.9 : High significant factors affecting adults in the acquisition of English as a second language on web-based ESL acquisition programs.

Highly significant factors affecting the acquisition of English using web-based applications Mean Score Grand Mean Rank
Texas Arizona Nevada Oklahoma Carlifornai Washington
Sequence of the acquisition process 3.66 3.13 2.90 2.62 3.05 3.37 3.12 29
Slow response to questions during the acquisition process 4.00 3.16 3.08 2.57 2.98 3.64 3.24 24
Quality of the application used 4.30 3.83 3.96 4.48 3.87 3.97 4.07 2
Interactive nature of the application 4.26 3.40 4.12 4.52 3.87 3.66 3.97 5
Teacher supervision 4.60 4.13 3.92 4.66 4.04 4.12 4.25 1
Application layout 3.56 3.49 3.27 4.16 3.38 3.90 3.63 11
Application usage skills 3.81 3.90 3.37 4.38 3.75 3.85 3.84 7
Collaborative use of the applications 4.10 3.87 3.52 4.13 3.78 3.70 3.85 6
Reputation of the application 3.01 3.54 3.35 4.51 3.42 3.67 3.58 12
Misunderstanding between teachers and adult students 3.16 2.59 2.63 1.99 3.60 3.18 2.86 44
Level of student motivation 3.55 2.97 3.15 2.09 3.44 3.55 3.13 27
Proper support for each of the learning activities 3.80 3.48 3.50 4.30 3.73 3.89 3.78 9
Poor communication between the student and the teacher 3.81 3.00 2.48 2.46 3.45 3.42 3.10 32
Tools/ application breakdown 3.85 3.30 2.63 2.00 3.13 3.40 3.05 35
Health and safety conditions of the teacher and the adult student 3.55 3.76 3.17 3.73 3.36 3.78 3.56 14
Teacher turnover rate 3.05 3.35 3.12 3.47 3.44 3.42 3.31 22
Student participation in decision making 3.15 3.59 3.00 4.34 3.16 3.12 3.39 19
Support for learning activities 3.66 2.68 2.83 2.22 3.04 2.86 2.88 43
Lack of appropriate navigational features 4.00 2.89 3.04 2.08 3.25 2.99 3.04 36
Student behavioral patterns 3.26 3.60 2.21 3.08 3.16 3.25 3.09 33
Lack of experience 4.00 3.63 3.19 2.92 3.40 2.84 3.33 21
Lack of skills for using the applications 3.96 3.62 3.35 3.29 3.56 2.92 3.45 17
Poor supervision of the student 4.06 4.21 3.19 2.80 3.67 2.86 3.47 16
Repetition of learning activities 3.56 3.57 2.29 3.13 3.49 2.73 3.13 27
Application dissatisfaction 3.40 1.87 2.81 2.05 2.22 2.82 2.53 47
Poor English Language comprehension 2.20 2.00 3.62 1.90 2.40 2.49 2.44 48
Lack of acquisition progress 3.35 3.14 2.29 2.27 3.49 2.97 2.92 41
Lack of blogging support features 3.25 3.84 2.63 3.97 3.60 2.84 3.35 20
Networking 3.45 2.92 2.48 2.29 2.42 2.77 2.72 46
Support for Social interactivity 3.45 3.17 2.83 3.00 3.25 2.96 3.11 30
Poor site layout 3.75 3.59 2.31 3.19 3.38 3.30 3.25 23
Support for blogs 3.65 2.76 2.62 2.15 2.73 3.56 2.91 42
Openness 3.60 3.35 2.63 3.13 3.22 3.05 3.16 26
Poor access to application features 3.51 3.27 3.00 2.85 2.69 3.19 3.08 34
Interference 4.15 3.03 2.63 2.66 3.44 2.77 3.11 30
Insturcti0nal delivery method 4.00 3.32 3.67 3.41 3.64 3.40 3.57 13
Not receiving directives due to slow learning responses 3.96 3.00 2.62 2.08 3.20 2.79 2.94 40
Availability of web-based teaching materials 4.25 4.16 3.65 3.84 4.02 4.05 3.99 4
Application design omissions 3.76 2.79 2.33 2.04 2.87 2.75 2.76 45
Application support for openness 4.01 3.49 3.50 3.96 3.24 3.16 3.56 14
application legibility 3.45 3.05 3.31 3.95 3.40 3.21 3.40 18
Needed information not on curriculum 3.96 3.11 2.69 2.03 3.53 2.81 3.02 39
Teaching goals and milestones 4.00 3.46 4.04 4.03 3.62 3.84 3.83 8
Interactive time 3.45 3.43 3.35 2.13 3.18 3.67 3.20 25
Design complexity of the application 3.49 3.24 2.85 2.28 3.29 3.11 3.04 36
High quality of required outputs 2.90 3.70 3.58 4.43 4.00 3.62 3.71 10
Change of the instructional mode 3.70 2.52 2.90 2.30 3.71 3.04 3.03 38
Specification and standardisation for web-based applications 4.20 3.94 3.73 4.35 4.22 3.77 4.04 3

Based on the above tabulation of the results from the research conducted on six states, a number of salient factors associated with adults on web-based programs in ESL acquisition programs became clear. Typically, that is based on the number of questionnaires administered on the population that participated in the study. Typically, the response rates in the first instance varied between 91.57% and 88.67% between the states. These questionnaires had been administered across the six states that were involved in the study. On the other hand, a high response rate, above 90% was received for questionnaires administered specifically to the adult population involved in ESL acquisition programs or who had an earlier experience with ESL acquisition programs.

A detailed analysis of the findings on data obtained for teachers’ perceptions of the impact of the factors affecting teaching of ESL programs in Texas State showed a number of variations. The scores varied from low, mean score, to very high scores. It is worth noting that each of the factors had their own implications based on the perceptions of the teacher involved in ESL acquisition programs. That varied the scores from low to very high. Observations based on the table show that an insignificant number of factors with low scores had little impact on adults in ESL acquisition programs. However, a significant number of items had a string impact on the perceptions of teachers for adults in ESL acquisition programs. Most of the scores varied between mean scores, high scores, and very high scores. It is crucial to note that factors such as the misunderstanding between the teacher and the student had insignificant impact on the teachers’ perceptions about adults in ESL acquisition programs.

However, factors such as out of sequence task assignments, slow response to questions in the acquisition of English as a second language in ESL acquisition programs, and Lack of periodic interactions with teachers and adult student has medium scores. On the other hand, application management and use based on the features and flexibility with navigational capabilities for the teacher and the adult student registered a very high score. On the other hand, the quality of the application in relation to assisting the student attains the learning goals and objectives, and application layout in relation to the supporting features with different features had a high score. On the other hand, supervision by the teacher of the student’s work on the web-based application recorded a very high score. In addition to that, occupational education and training for the teacher involved in ESL acquisition programs had a significant impact on ESL acquisition programs for the adult. Other factors that had significant impact on the perceptions of teachers in ESL acquisition programs included effective use of integrated features into the web-based application, and the frequency of using web-based applications in ESL acquisition programs. Lack of periodic interactions between the teacher and the student, lack of proper practice, appropriate time management and application support for the adult student, and poor communication between the teacher and the student had significant implications on the adults on web-based applications on ESL acquisition programs.

Different states showed different responses for questions on the administered questionnaires on different respondents on perceptions and the impact of different factors associated with adults on web-based applications on ESL acquisition programs. Typically, a range of issues and factors were considered that had a significant impact on adults on web-based applications on ESL acquisition programs. Among the factors considered salient included support for the development of the cognition capabilities of the adult student in English Language. Cognition was significantly influenced by the slow response rates to the questions sent to the adult student during an interactive session, the quality of the application in support the development of the student’s mental cognition, and time and application management during the interaction period. Other issues related to the salient features examined in the data analysis included support for memorizing vocabularies and words in English, and support for motivation to attain the ultimate goal of ESL acquisition.

Based on the responses on the impact of different factors affecting adults in ESL acquisition programs, the data was summarized into high significant factors affecting adults in the acquisition of English as a second language on web-based ESL acquisition programs. A number of items were ranked according to the responses and the perceptions the respondents had toward the ESL acquisition programs for adults. Some of the items included the sequence with which tasks were assigned students and their responses to the impact of the item, slow response to the questions and their perceived implications on the performance of the adult student, and the quality of the application. It is crucial, therefore, to note that not all items mentioned in the paper have been discussed, but a summarized view of their implications on adults in ESL acquisition programs is discussed below.

Facts from the above study show that Adults in (ESL) acquisition programs using web-based applications are able to develop their English Language skills since they support a number of learning outcomes. These include the support for cognition development of the adult student in English Language. Typically, the support for cognition development is significant as it shows the cognitive process to be one of the fundamental components used in the acquisition of the second language, which is supported on web-based applications. The applications enable adults go through the cognitive process based on integrated features that support the acquisition of English as a second language. It is with the use of features and functionalities built into web-based applications that the adult students are able to build on previous knowledge, which has its foundation on stored in memory. Web-based applications provide an environment that enables web-based learners in ESL acquisition programs to develop based on the cognitive enabling the adult student to systematically use articles and nouns by combining them in the acquisition process. On the other hand, it is deductible from the above study that some of the features integrated into the web-based applications support the cognition process and enables the student to respond to their growth in acquiring proficiency in the language.

These applications enable the adult student to acquire the English Language vocabulary and syntax interactively. Typically, that is also supported on features that support feedback, interaction between the teacher and the student, and a high level of availability of the application for use in the acquisition process. The program provides features that support structured input of learning English Language based on the web-based technologies. These features support the use of listening, reading, content vocabulary, writing, and studying skills to enable the development of English Language knowledge by the adult student. In addition to that, it is clear from the study that some of the applications provide specifications and standardizations that support several of the features required for ESL acquisition programs on web-based applications. The applications allow the teacher in instructional delivery to tailor the content with increasing levels of difficulty for the student depending on their level of qualifications.

These applications use a combination of sounds, pictures, and text in the language acquisition process. That is also applicable for adult student with their first languages in Spanish, Tagalog, Portuguese, Farsi, Arabic, Russian, and Hebrew. In theory, second languages inculcated into the student provide meaningful input that allows the learner to understand and use the language effectively. Web-based technology enables the teacher and the student in an interactive environment to associate pictures and visual aids with new words in the acquisition process to enable the adult student capture the meaning of new words with clarity and unambiguously. However, each level of learning is associated with different aids, which are more complex as the student progresses in the learning process. Therefore, the learning process is content-based and relies on previously language acquisition, allowing the student to associate the language with images and meaning. Thus, the process progressively becomes complex with memory playing the central role in the learning of the new language. Applications enable the learner becomes acquainted with the language needs through the cognitive process mentioned above.

Web-based applications also provide adult students with sound and listening capabilities among the instructional delivery methods. However, sounds and other features for interactive learning are supported on web-based applications that provide abilities for the student to make observations during the acquisition process. Observations can be presented to the learner in computerized form. Linguistic observations provide the foundation for learners to understand information the teacher is communicating enabling making the student acquire a sturdy foundation of knowledge in ESL acquisition. Observations are among the theoretical foundations that web-based instr5uctional methods of teaching the adult students are based. These technologies provide learners of the English Language with many reading and spoken observation exercises constituting grammar and vocabularies, correctly blended in the spoken form and presented in a clear and succinct way. The technologies enable words to be correctly used and correctly associated with each sentence structure and meaning. During the development process, adult students develop skills in the acquisition process, which can be applied practically.

Thus, the student’s abilities on the usage of English Language become a tool for practical use and for interactions in the acquisition process. These abilities can be measured using technologies and that is viewed as making the learning process an active rather than a passive activity. Web-based technologies provide adults with the ability to use their knowledge and experience of the newly acquired English Language to identify different situations and correctly associate each new situation with the correct answer. These situations can be made virtual realities on the applications even before the student applies the knowledge in the real world environment. The English Language knowledge acquired in the process is associated with the mental or cognitive development in the above usage rather than by memorizing the new words. Therefore, instructors can use web-based applications to meet the learning goals and objectives of the student.

Findings indicate that adult students engaged in web-based applications inspire confidence in adult students in ESL acquisition programs. A confident student in the learning process gets the motivated to attain higher goals in the learning process. Therefore, any difficulties encountered in the learning process can be readily addressed using web-based applications and that enables the student to exploit the features integral to the applications, which provide a richer learning experience for the adult student rather than being an obstacle for progressive acquisition of the language. One of the components that support the acquisition of English as a second language is negotiation. Negotiation is inspired through confidence. Thus, confidence in the adult student in ESL acquisition programs is gained an enables the student be excellent in negotiation skills that enable them convey meaning effectively and efficiently. Thus, web-based students become more confident in the use of English Language as a second language, communicate effectively, and acquire the ability to realize their potential to communicate effectively at the early stages of the acquisition process.

According to the studies, motivation plays a crucial role in the acquisition of English as a second language. Motivation is considered to encourage learners towards attainment of their goals and learning objectives in ESL acquisition program. Web-based technologies provide the motivation by encouraging the attainment of the language acquisition techniques and enables significant acquisition of the language structure. that is also funded on an evaluation of the adult attitude in the acquisition of the English Language as a second language.

One of the inherent features that provide support for the student in the acquisition process include computer-assisted language learning, one of the techniques used in the learning of English as a second language. Attitude toward computer assisted learning plays as significant role in flexible and satisfactory use of web-based applications by the adult student in the acquisition of English as a second language. Findings show that the level of enjoyment and level of usefulness in the ESL acquisition programs have shown positive results with the adult student. The level of proliferation and use of computers in the ESL acquisition programs reinforces the assumptions that the level of use and usability of computers is the motivating factor. One of the platforms that web-based applications find significant usage is the internet. The internet is a technology that enables teachers to teach and offer learners the options to self-direct their learning. Research shows that self-directed learning links the learning outcomes with real life experiences, establishing a strong link between offering English Language lessons to adult learners and the use of web-based technologies.

From the perspective of the teacher, computers are used in curriculum development with significant success. It is worth, therefore agreeing, “No curriculum can claim to be truly learner-centered unless the learner’s subjective needs and perceptions relating to the process of learning are taken into account” (p.177). it is crucial to note that these applications are designed with features that allow for individualized content for the teacher and the student. Features such as interactive features, image support features, recasts, availability, and support for inputs that allow the student to learn in ESL acquisition programs are integrated into the web-based applications. Findings show that it is more effective to use computers to capture, analyze and store student information to enable the teacher evaluate the student’s progress in ESL acquisition. Finings still show that the analyzed information helps instructors monitor the progress of the student and helps to establish the best approach to address the language needs of the student in the acquisition process. Research shows that wrong usage of the computer might not provide appropriate and reliable results in the analysis of the student’s performance. Statistical findings reflect the role and effectiveness of web-based programs in teaching English as a second language in ESL acquisition programs. However, success in the use of computer applications, as established in the above studies is based on the need to change their behavioral attitude and develop a positive attitude toward the use of web-based applications.

Findings indicate a number of shortcomings and issues to avoid in the acquisition process. These include adults avoiding the skipping of computer classes to enable quick advances in mastering English as a second language. In addition, students need to apply their time in the use of computer. Thus, the study factors the latter as a limitation in the research of the use of web-based technologies to teach adult learners English as a second language. However, to draw on the usage of web-based technologies, the approach could involve two methods. One of the methods is tutor centered and the other is based on the software tool used to teach English Language to the adult learners.

Studies show that the latter approach ensures successful completion of the ESL acquisition program by use of computers and other web-based technologies as an instructional mode of delivery. On the other hand, the use of a tool, which is, from the perspective of the learner, involves using software programs to learn English comes in the form of speaking, listening, reading, and grammar activities.

However, the important role-played by instructors in facilitating the teaching of English a second language to adults using web-based technologies cannot be ignored. Teachers provide a connection between the traditional classroom instructional methods with real world genuine activities and web-based applications. It is a tripartite approach, where teachers are an intermediary between the student and the three environments. Findings also show that web-based technologies provide a suitable environment for instructors and teachers to experience face-to-face interactions as one in a traditional class via web-based applications.

Further research findings show that web-based technologies provide the artifacts used to impart knowledge in the adult student, which is similar to using cultural tools and artifacts in instructional delivery. Therefore, the use of web-based applications for adults in ESL acquisition programs take the teaching of English as a second language to the next level, and is based on the flexibility associated with the use of technology.

Findings show that a number of contributions have been made using web-based applications in the acquisition of English as a second language. These include the constant stream of information made available for adult students using media and related technologies. It is important to note the use of technology as a tool to teach English Language as a Second Language to adults gains further reinforcement form the historical perspective and use of different tools to impart knowledge. It supports the phylogenetic development of the human being. Thus, it is critical that human beings appreciate the use of computers to teach English as a second language to adults.

In the use of web-based applications, studies show that the acquisition of English as a second language is a ten-step point process for instructors to be acquainted with. The ten-point process includes understanding the learning needs of adults particularly in relation to the use of technology to master the language. Results show that adults make mistakes that are similar to any English Language starters, which are related to the native language of the adult in ESL acquisition programs. It is also possible that certain language structures are a prerequisite in the learning process and should be integral and a prerequisite for other structures. In addition to the structures, another component of crucial value is that practice makes perfect. Other findings show that error corrections guarantees effective learning. Effective learning, according to the findings is based on practice. It is a complex exercise with significant input from the learner and the teacher, as exemplified in the following statement, highlighted in the literature review: “A learner’s ability to understand language in a meaningful context exceeds his/her ability to comprehend decontextualised language and to produce language of comparable complexity and accuracy”. p.11

Therefore, time and opportunity provide an amiable environment for the acquisition of the second language. It is also possible to conclude that web-based technologies significantly enhance the acquisition of English as a second language.

In the studies, contributions of web-based applications in the acquisition of English as a second language provided a number of findings. Research on web-based applications in the acquisition of English as a second language for adult learners showed the value associated with web-based technologies in delivering English Language lessons to the adult learner. One of the technologies considered was the web 1.0 technologies as platforms for delivering information to the adult student. However, shortfalls inherent in with web 1.0 technologies led to the recommendations of web 2.0 technologies as much more suited to teaching English to adults. Web 2.0 technologies enable to participate interactively in information creation. That makes web 2.0 technologies interactive platforms for learners of English Language as a second language. In these findings, web 1.0 technologies had serious shortcomings that were overcome by introducing web 2.0 technologies. Web 2.0 technologies therefore provided a platform for the language-learning paradigm by allowing adult learners to communicate and learn English Language in a meaningful way.

Studies from the research show the usefulness of web 2.0 technologies in the acquisition of English as a second language. That is due to the superior functionality of web 2.0 technologies. These technologies are in the form of applications such as Authorware, Flash, Basic, among others. Typically, these applications provided web 2.0 services that were suited for teaching English to adults as a second language. Despite the value inherent in web 2.0 technologies to teach English as a second language to teach adults, other studies show the use of the classroom as one of the most reliable and effective way of teaching English to adults. It is also established that teaching English in the classroom with a connection to the internet provides the best and most effective use of technology. Teaching English with a connection to the internet leads to blended learning, which integrates face-to-face interactions in online learning. As pointed out earlier in this study, online web-based technologies offer students in this case teachers for the adult classes with the opportunity to add content and innovative teaching materials online. Different web-based applications can be used to provide and host the content provided by teachers in an interactive community of adult learners. Among the web-based applications is the wiki system. The Wiki system provides computer mediated communication on the internet platform and is used as one of the web-based technologies widely used to teach English Language a as second language. That makes it important to make an evaluative study of the entire wiki system for use to teach English as a second language to adult students.

Other research findings conducted to investigate the use of web-based applications including the wiki system to teach English as a second language provided a number of findings. Web-based applications are critical in the acquisition of English language. It was important for instructors to consider the level of the learner’s motivation, the characteristics of web-based activities included in the adult course, the most appropriate level of interaction that suits the student best, the level and kind of questions administered to the students, and the impact of traditional teaching against web-based technologies.

An evaluation of the wiki system to teach English to adult learners as one of the examples of web-based techniques provided significant findings. These findings were restricted to the research that looked into the Wiki system and activities conducted on the system in support of teaching English as a second language.

The wiki system is one of the web-based applications that have undergone radical innovations to address emerging issues in teaching English as a second language. Investigations) show that the wiki application system has previously been used to teach historical lessons before it was innovated and configured to teach English as a second language.

The wiki application system integrates certain features that allow instructors to interact with the adult student in teaching English as a Second Language (ESL) to the adult student. These features allow the teacher and the student to conduct web-based activities in the teaching of English Language. These activities include web quest activities tailored to address English Language needs for adults in the technical profession, providing assistance in academic vocabulary lists, and teaching of English for IT professionals. It shows that adult learners and teachers or instructors need to know. This includes the level of enjoyment and commitment to study English as a second language is based on a number of issues. These include the level of motivation for the student to study English language, the structure and type of web-based activities and the application being used to teach English as a second language, the kind of learning approach used to impart the knowledge on English language, and the number and type of activities involved in the learning and teaching process.

The perceptions developed and scope about the factors that influence and the affect teaching English as a second language to the adult learner, but seem to agree on the fundamental issues such as motivation towards learning English as a second language are significant and underlying factors. Comparatively traditional teaching methods and web-based technologies based on learning activities such as instructional in the teaching of English language.

The wiki system’s evaluation showed significant potentiality as a tool to teach English Language as a Second Language. It is a flexible and acceptable system and showed a significant degree of student satisfaction. Among the activities supported on the wiki system were teaching in vocabularies and learning based on learning outcomes, enhanced writing, and reading skills, collaborative learning, and the coordination of peer-to-peer learning activities. In addition to that, the ability of the application to provide the flexibility, allow for critical thinking, and enhance problem-solving abilities in the student provided additional activities to evaluate the wiki system as a web-based application for teaching English as a second language to adults.

The system has a strong connection between the outcome and the activities in the teaching and learning of English as a second language. The number and type of e-activities activities considered included hotlist, brain writing, chain letter, Zip/unzip file, storyboard, and debating activities. Each of the adult learner participants performed similar tasks and provided feedback on their findings in the use of web-based tools in learning English. The first in the series of activities included students developing their own hotlist by conducting internet searches and creating a hotlist of web sites they considered valuable. The students categorized valuable web sites into those that provided textual information and content related to the course related topics of interest to the student and the content of the course the student was pursuing. Findings on the hotlist showed significant interest in the use of the wiki system to teach and learn English as a second language. In their studies,

The second approach in the list used to test the use of the wiki system and its flexibility in usage included the Zip/unzip file test element. Here, students were grouped into pairs and asked to write, with the assistance of the web-based tool, that is the wiki system, long sentences and rewrite the sentences into smaller sentences. The test included each pair of students posting their shortened fashion of sentences on the wiki system they were using. Another pair suing the same system was required to construct the original sentence and post it on the wiki system. Typically, that included zipping and unzipping the sentences. Finally, each of the pairs involved in the zipping, unzipping exercise posted their sentences on the wiki system, and the sentences were compared against the original sentences. In addition to that, the learners were required to post their evaluation of the wiki system in relation to the zipping and unzipping exercise. Significant findings were established during the study. One of the critical findings showed the level of satisfaction with the system to lie between 3.5 and 3.9 on the likert scale. In conclusion, the rating was considered good and reliable.

Brainwriting was the third evaluation approach used to evaluate the wiki system. Brainwriting included participants experimenting with their level of creativity by creating a number of alternative solutions to a problem based on course related content on the wiki systems. Then, the teachers and learners evaluate the solutions by evaluating the solutions sent by either groups involved in the study, just like in the arrangement in the first case involving zip and unzip file approaches. The brainwriting technique allows adult learners to interact by sending their problems and solutions to other pairs of students on the system. The solutions are evaluated against the problems and the actual solutions to the problems. Each of the pairs involved in learning English based in the wiki system sends problems and possible solutions to other pairs in a sequence. Finally, the solutions and problems are evaluated against a long list of solutions. Then, the problems and their solutions are posted on the wiki system. Each of the adult learners and participants are then allowed to evaluate the entire process by assigning numerical values against their perceptions. Findings showed a significant positive rating for the wiki system, with their usefulness evaluated at an average of 3.8 and the level of interest on the wiki system as 4.1.

Further findings show that the applications support the chain letter technique used on wiki system. In this case, the level of usefulness of the wiki system based on the features that support learning items in their usage in teaching and learning English as a second language, thus motivating and stimulating a level of interest in the web-based system. Typically, the chain letter technique includes students evaluating and reviewing the content materials related to teaching English as a second language for each course related topics is supported on the web-based applications. This was among the e-activities that were considered critical when critically evaluating the responses based on review questions administered on the student. To evaluate the wiki system effectively based on the chain letter technique, a number of participants recruited into the exercise showed a significant response from the sates. Each of the participants was required to respond to questions posted to them through an email, and then the participants using the wiki system could provide answers to the posted questions based on the course content they had covered. In addition to that, the requirement was to identify whether the wiki system provided features that supported the use of the application to provide feedback.

Then, the participants were required to generate their own questions and post them to the next group of participants. Typically, that was to determine the level of support web-based applications provided to enable collaborations between the students on ESL acquisition programs. New questions written by the first group based on the course content and were answered by another group in the series of participants within 48 hours. The application provided the functionalities and availability for such interactions within the stipulated time for the exercise. Different wiki pages were used to post the answers before the teacher or instructor using the wiki system evaluated them. This allowed all participants to post their answers and questions on the wiki system without any interference from another group. Each of the groups participating in the system was allowed to view the questions and responses posted by the different groups as a creative activity. In response to the creative activities, it was concluded that the learners and teachers valued the wiki system at 3.6 for its usefulness and 4.1 on its level of interest on the likert scale. The researchers were led to the conclusion that the wiki system was a critical tool in teaching and learning of English based on its usefulness and level of interest. In addition to that, the level of interest was overwhelmingly significant.

Among the features supported on the wiki application for the acquisition of English as a second language included the design for the applications, navigational flexibilities, input and output mode, and networking. On the other hand, to evaluate the wiki system as a web-based application used to teach English Language as a second language, the functionality to enable debating as one of the factors to evaluate the system. These functionalities included identifying the use of speech and other visual interactions to enable debating. Debating required all students in the learning process to participate in a virtual debate. Each of the participants was required to participate in a controversial debate. Each of the participants was required to debate in a team. There were two teams in the virtual debating platform. One team was in the proposition side while the other was in the opposition team. Each of the teams had a specific role to play. Either of the teams were in the pro or contra positions. The teams’ arguments were then posted on the wiki pages for revaluation purposes. Then, the usefulness and level of interest of the use of the technique on the wiki systems were assigned numerical values for the purpose of evaluation. The number of participants was also noted in the study. Findings showed the level of interest to be 3.8 and the level of usefulness to be 3.5 on the likert scale. Thus, the conclusion was that the wiki systems had significant value in teaching English as a second language for the adult learners.

The last approach used to evaluate the wiki system was the use of storyboard. Storyboard was an e-activity that required adult learners to respond and offer a solution to a problem in writing to a complain letter. Each of the students were required to provide a specific response to a complain letter posted on the wiki system by properly addressing the problem in written English. Colleagues using the wiki system as a web-based system to learn English as a second language are the ones to post the problem letter. The problem should focus on the content of the course and should contain every part of a formal letter. The complaint letter is part of the learning process on the wiki system and presented in a tutorial to the adult students. Fourteen participants provided their response on their evaluation of the wiki system. The level of interest was 3.8 and the level of usefulness scored an average of 3.8 on the likert scale. In conclusion, the researchers found the wiki system useful in teaching English as a second language.

Research led to the conclusion that the wiki system as one of the web-based applications had a significant potential in its applicability to teach English as a second language. In addition to that, the system had the potential of enabling adult learners in the acquisition of English Language skills as a second language. The application contributed to the acquisition of vocabularies, the development of writing skills, and the e-activities provided a platform for students to grow in their critical thinking skills in the use of English Language as a second language. In addition to that, the wiki application provided a platform for adequate feedback from students and enhanced the growth of the adult student in studying and learning of English as a second language.

While the wiki system provided a platform to evaluate a number of techniques to evaluate the web-based applications to teach and learn English as a second language to the adults, it is critical to examine the importance of using web-based applications such as wiki systems to minimize a number of errors encountered during the teaching and learning processes. These include lexical errors that adult learners experience in the learning process when using web-based technologies. Thus, the following section discusses lexical errors, their sources, and methods that web-based technologies adopt to overcome lexical errors in adult English Language learners.

On lexical errors, it was realized in the findings that such errors are inherently encountered in the first phases of learning and teaching English to adults taking English as second language. That makes it important for adult learners to learn the use of words correctly, enabling adults to acquire lexical competence in the use of English language. However, different authors provide different definitions and views about lexical errors that a learner of English Language as a Second Language experiences. Lexical errors were viewed from the perspective of components and the learning process that allows the learner to enter any new word in the mental lexicon. Therefore, to enter a new word into the mental lexicon involves the learning process. However, it is during the learning process that one develops lexicon errors.

Web-based applications have feature that support adult student to gain lexical competence. That is because Lexical errors are introduced into the mind of the English Language learner when each element in the learning process is not properly acquired and used to enhance one’s vocabulary of words. When the learner skips or does not readily comprehend the steps involved in capturing and retaining a word in the mental lexicon, a possibility develops of developing a lexical error. It was established that main steps involved in developing lexical competence to avoid lexical errors to include listening to a word, reading the word presented textually, examining and recognizing the orthographic pattern in the word, pronouncing the word, and writing the word again in textual form. Web-based applications support learners to develop mental pictures of the orthographic pattern of words, and use the pattern to comprehend the syntactic properties of the words. Therefore, a student can establish a pattern of the lexical relationships of the word and other words, the sematic properties in the word, and the referential properties in the word. However, failure, according to Ellis (1995), to adhere to the rules and procedures is bound to make the learner into developing a number of lexical errors in the mental lexicon.

Findings show that lexical errors are overcome with competence in contextual knowledge of the use of words and assert that when any of the items in contextual learning and competence is skipped, then the learner develops lexical errors. Contextual knowledge in the use of words implies knowing the morphology, phonology, syntax, and semantics of the words in the linguistic dimension. Knowing a word in the social linguistic dimension includes recognizing the specific word and using the word in a connective manner with other words. The learnability of a word also has significant contribution to the learner developing lexical errors if the word is difficult to learn in the pedagogical dimension. Teachers of English Language using web-based technologies have to bear in mind when teaching adults the English Language as a second language.

Both native and non-native instructors regard lexical errors are serious mistakes. These errors provide the opportunities for adult learners of English as second language to improve e their writing skills of the language since they include vocabulary exercises. In the findings instructors of English Language as a Second Language the lexical competence to grade students and when a learner show a lot of lexical errors, is bound to have a poor grade at the end of the course. Therefore, lexical errors are used to evaluate the English Language proficiency of the adult student and evaluate their proficiency in the use of vocabularies, originality of their work, and frequency, and variations in their work when evaluating their writing, reading, and speaking skills in English Language as a second language.

Lexical errors are crucial in the acquisition of English as a second language. They enable the learners to study and learn English effectively as a second language. Web-based applications use lexical bundles frequently found within text and constitute discernible functions within any lexical mind. It is therefore important to consider whatever constitutes lexical errors to comprehend fully how web base applications provide methods to solve the problem with adult English learners as a second language.

Lexical errors significantly contribute to the teaching and learning of English Language as a Second Language by adults using web-based applications. Findings show that grammatical accuracy is important when an individual is engaged in a communication with another. Grammatical correctness and intelligibility are not closely related, and support the fact that lexical errors significantly contribute to the way an adult communicate. Therefore, lexical errors find their importance in the way a learner transmits information and its meaning depending on the type of lexical error.

Support features for lexical acquisition and development were also salient features incorporated into the applications. It is crucial to note one important point about lexical errors. They assist learners in their acquisition of English Language as a Second Language and especially in the acquisition and proper use of vocabularies, and acquisition, with time in the learning and teaching process, the proficiency of using English as the second language. In addition to that, adult learners of English Language as a Second Language have the opportunity to study lexical errors seriously and attach significant importance to them, so that in the learning process, one is able to avoid them as much as possible to become proficiency in the use of the language. That further stimulates the need to study lexical error seriously and attempt, in the part of the student, to avoid the lexical errors as much as possible. However, applications, or web-based applications provide the support, as mentioned elsewhere in the paper, for the instructor teaching English as a second language and adult learners taking English as a second language to learn and avoid such errors ad become proficient in the use of the language. Before the study focuses on computer supported teaching of such errors, it is critical to focus on teaching lexical explicit to adult learners.

Web-based applications provide an environment for teachers of English Language as a Second Language to be aware of the meaning of knowing words.. Teachers of English Language as a Second Language should know when facing vocabularies and the use of vocabularies and the support such vocabularies provide such that activities involving the use of web-based applications that enable learners minimize the level and number of lexical errors in their studies and use of the language. The support offered to the learner on web-based applications allows the learner to enhance and enlarge their mental lexicon, and provides them with the opportunity to exercise what they have learnt and apprehend vocabularies and new words satisfactorily. However, using web-based applications to teach English Language as a Second Language is an especially complex task. This is because most adult learners have developed an attitude toward the acquisition of a new language and find they are not interested in direct language acquisition. Adult learners find difficulties adapting and using new technologies particularly web-based applications. Therefore, teaching English as a second language to adult learners becomes difficulty since most of the technologies are new and most adults have no exposure on the use of the emerging technologies.

One of the fundamental issues associated with findings on lexical learning includes the use of and the necessity of FonF practice in communicative learning. FonF is a paradigm that focuses on the acquisition of English Language using linguistic forms and activities that bear meaning when communicating information bears risks. However, further research reveals that FonF has had significant use in applied grammar and little use in lexical teaching. However, current research shows that FonF can be used as a direct means to teach English as a second language and has been shown to provide some direct means of providing lexical instructions.

Another finding is the use of computer-assisted forms. Computer assisted forms provide uniquely configured features which are extremely useful and that fosters in the learning and teaching of vocabularies. However, research shows that computers are not an intrinsically motivating resource for adults especially if their prior lives were not exposed to their use. Despite that, adults need to understand well that today is a dynamically changing society with new and emerging trends in the use of technology in language acquisition. Therefore, an integration of computers in the teaching of English to adult students should be appreciated as one of the methods that keep abreast with emerging trends in the use of technology in world being changed by technology.

Research shows that computers provide multimodal capabilities for users in addition to the integrated visual aids and an aura of features that allow interactive use of the computer by the adult to lean English Language as a Second Language (ELSL). Computers provide a wide range of abilities for the teacher to develop a wide range of dynamic teaching and learning capabilities. That, provides a wide range of opportunities for the adult student to interact with the web-based application when taking an ESL course.

In the study, it is realized that web-based applications provide the capabilities for learners to stimulate the deep learning and processing of vocabularies and learn new words and apply the new words in situations. Web-based applications provide an enabling environment for adult learners to associate words and new vocabularies to real life situations that are depicted in pictures and other relevant content. web-based applications provide growth in the acquisition of vocabularies by the use of hypertext that are deemed superior to linear text.

Hypertexts are designed for the adult audience to tap into available knowledge on English Language vocabularies and the syntax of the language to avoid lexical errors. Features were also integrated that support the hypertexts for the user of the web-based applications That also allows users to interactively create semantic webs whiles studying English Language as a second language. Analytically, however, the last point on creating semantic content is disputed strongly as adults fins it difficulty to interact with new technologies. Adults spend less time with new technologies and learning to the extent of creating web semantics is a difficulty activity. However, in support of the assumptions, adults are able to experience different contexts of a word or a new vocabulary and are enabled by the use of technology to be in charge of their learning process. Being in charge of their learning process, adults are able to access online definitions of a word or a vocabulary, definitions, and glossaries with little effort so along as they are able to use the technology. Learners are therefore able to select online applications that suites their user needs without any restrictions experienced in a classroom environment.

Adult learners of English Language as a Second Language are able to gloss on individual vocabulary items coupled with video clips to be more effective and proficient in English. That further improves the lexical competence of the adult learner who concentrates on learning English using web-based applications. However, it is important to study the level of accuracy, complexity, and fluency attained by an adult taking ESL to evaluate the effectiveness of using web-based applications to study English Language as a second language.

Complexity, fluency, and accuracy are useful measures of the performance of adults in their proficiency of English Language as a second language. However, other authors content the facts that accuracy, fluency, and complexity provide the basis for measuring the proficiency of learners lexical efficiency of learners of English as a second language. Therefore, a mixture of items has to be considered when evaluating the effectiveness of web-based applications in teaching English as a second language.

The general assumptions on lexical competence based on proficient use of web-based applications by the adult learner includes characteristics such as complexities, the concern and ability to avoid errors to attain higher levels of competence, and the capacity to produce fluent speech without any errors resulting in higher degrees of fluency.

Competencies in the above areas require detailed attention in the use of web-based applications that provide the capacity for the adult learner to master the language and gain competence in each specific area. Attention coupled with involvement of working memory sometimes causes a negative impact on the adult learner. Negative effects include attitudinal changes toward the use of technology, in this case web-based applications in the learning process. However, the tension that causes negative effects might be annulled when commitment to learning by the adult student gains focus leading to improved performance. That allows learners to commit themselves to applying learning memory and making it available particularly when using web-based applications.

It is established that the adult learner becomes mentally committed and involved in the use of web-based applications in the learning process. Thus, there is a connection between fluency, accuracy, and the performance of the adult leaner in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. fluency, performance, and accuracy had a strong foundation on the use of web-based applications. There is empirical evidence showing that web-based applications provide the foundation for the developing the adult leaner’s competency.

However, the author proposes that to evaluate accurately the performance of the adult learner in the acquisition of English Language as a second language, there is need to measure the level of success based on rising levels of sophistication and complexity. The progress in the area of competency for the adult learner therefore requires that the web-based application provide inbuilt features to enable progress in learning the psycholinguistics of English Language in all areas English Language acquisition and use. Therefore, there is a strong need to establish task based performance of English Language as a second language. That is in the context of features integrated into web-based applications that provide fluency and lexical competency.

Another feature that enables the fluent acquisition of English as a second language based on web-based applications were efficient use of the language in spoken form. Web-based applications provide the ability for the adult student to be more fluent in the use of English Language as a second language. This might look as an assumption, but analytically, study findings confirm the assumption. However, the success in the use of web-based applications in inculcating competence and fluency in the adult learner in English Language as a Second Language is based on the measure of the degree of breakdown experienced by the adult user of the language. Features integrated into the applications provide the ability to evaluate the degree of break down when using English, which is indexed by pausing, and the level and ability for the adult leaner to repair the use of English based on the learning outcomes from the use of web-based applications. The level and ability to repair the speaking of English as a second language is based on the extent to which the application being used by the adult learner provides the flexibility to reformulate the use of vocabularies and other English Language items. One of the items that interestingly provide an evaluative approach in the use of these applications to determine the use of web-based applications and includes integrated features to compare native speakers of English Language and adults second language speakers enrolled in the study of English Language as a second language. One of the paradigms used in the comparison process includes differences in the fluent use of the language.

It was crucial to consider additional features that could support the acquisition of information and their relative advantage to the use on web-based programs. That was in relation to the performance of English Language, which included analyzing information from a database on the contrast between two groups in the performance of different tasks using the integrated web-based features. The tasks were assigned to pairs of adult students who had been on ESL training. In the evaluation process, one set of students were native speakers while the other set included adult students in ESL program using web-based applications. These students were assigned simple tasks such as turning off an oven that had been left open. The narrative involved using a number of features integrated into the web-based application. The features involved pictures that had no specific story line and each of the groups were required to complete tasks assigned them once they understood the instructions. The instructions were issued to the adult learners using web-based applications. The learners were separated into two distinct groups. One group was given the opportunity to plan and use web-based applications to carry out their activities while the other group had no opportunity to use we b based applications to carry out their activities. The learners in the group who had the opportunity to use web-based applications plan were given ten minutes to plan and complete their activities while those who had not been given an opportunity to use the web-based application were not given time to plan and carry out their duties. Each of the groups were allowed to take notes, which were taken away immediately after the tasks were completed. Each of the groups was required to use a web-based application to make notes. Each of the groups was then examined on their pausing on three tasks. The groups consisted of native and non-native English Language adult speakers.

Experimental results showed a significant relationship between non-native speakers who used web-based applications and their performance, and non-native speakers without the opportunity to use the web-based applications. Adult learners with the opportunity to use web-based applications paused less than those who did not use any technology in the process of learning and doing assigned activities. It was found that speakers of English as a second language could regard AS boundaries which provided boundaries for online learning and teaching. However, a one of the groups in the testing process involved native speakers of English language. It was established that native speakers could pause clearly in mid-clause compared with non-native speakers. However, non-native speakers who used we based technologies showed less distinct pauses mid-clause compared with learners of English who never used web-based technologies. Therefore, the assumption and findings showed a strong significance of web-based technologies in teaching and learning of English Language as a second language.

Conclusion

A number of studies conducted on adults learning in web-based ESL acquisition programs yielded a several significant facts and conclusions about web-based applications and ESL acquisition programs. Typically, it is crucial to note that web-based applications provide an enabling environment for adults in ESL acquisition programs trying to learn English as a Second Language (ESL). Among the facts yielded in the study shows that a significant number of teachers support the use of web-based applications as a platform for hosting adult English language programs. That is typically due to the functionalities of the computer and the features integrated into the web-based applications. It was established in the study that web-based applications provide an enabling environment consisting of programs for learning grammar, listening, and reading. In addition to that, web-based applications support the development in English language cognition for the adult students in ESL acquisition programs. It was established in the study that a number of factors such as attitude had a significant impact on the acquisition of English as a second language by the adults in ESL acquisition programs.

Typically, attitude toward the use of web-based applications and its effects on the performance of the adult student in the acquisition of English as a second language had a significant impact. Thus, a conclusion in the affirmative shows that technology had a strong influence on the way adult learners acquired English as a second language. Further studies revealed the rationale behind the conclusions. According to the studies, technology “has the potential in its capability both to supervise student performance and to monitor, record, analyze, and summarize data about that performance”. The conclusion is based on flexibility and significance of the application in ESL acquisition process. Among the technologies integrating salient features that support the acquisition of English as a second language in ESL acquisition programs is the Programmed Logic for Automatic Teaching Operations (PLATO). Typically, PLATO provides features that support instructional mode of delivery for the adult student, has the features that allow for inputs high quality inputs and outputs, and supports openness as a factors that impacts on the acquisition process.

However, other technologies support the provision of better interactive features, better services and more integrated features to address the English language adult learners’ needs. It is crucial at this point to note additional features to consist of support interfaces for enabling access to good quality teaching and learning materials, support for lexical competence in the acquisition of English as a second language, and support for high response rates. However, there were a number of pitfalls identified in relation to the applications. Typical shortcomings included application design omissions that could support the adult student in navigating to a specific feature and accessing a specified item, shortcomings in the availability of web-based teaching materials, and slow response to student inquiries. Other factors that had negative implications on the web-based application included the negative attitude of teachers toward the use of technology to teach English as a second language, and the cost of the technologies. However, alternative applications could bridge the gap.

Despite the weaknesses associated with some of the technologies to support the acquisition of English as a second language, it was noted in the study that a high rate of application development could bridge any weaknesses identified in other technologies. In addition to that, wide varieties of technologies have been developed and are now available from which one could select the most appropriate application for the learning environment. These technologies support a wide range of learning tasks. These include the capacity to motivate the adult leaner in the acquisition of the language as a second language, and increase availability of materials authenticated and approved for the teaching and learning of English language as a second language. Other benefits include flexibility and ability of the adult learner to interact with a wide community and audience of peers and to enable the adult student to emphasize and focus on individual goals. Other benefits included flexibility to use different sources of materials and learning materials while creating a sense of belonging to the global community. Findings also show that using web-based applications that rely on computers provide the advantages over traditional teaching methods that involved face-to-face interactions. A significant number of responses showed that web-based applications provided the learner with the ability to learn thousands of lexical items compared with traditional teaching and learning methods. It was shown in the study based on analytical data that adults could interact frequently with the second language. That was due to the use of technology to bridge the gap between students who could not access the traditional classes and those who had the opportunity to interact in a traditional classroom setting.

Findings from the research showed that web-based applications had integrated functionalities to enable teachers engaged in ESL acquisition programs to interact with the adult students in the English Language acquisition programs. The interactive nature could provide the adult student with the ability to gain immediate feedback and response that could further support development in the acquisition process. It was demonstrated in the research that on their environmental factors has a significant influence on the development of the adult in English Language should provide the features that allow the adult student to attain the learning goals and objectives. In addition to that, web-based applications had a significant inclination in their design. That included features that allowed requirements, that could help in the English Language acquisition include the quality of inputs, the opportunity to put into practice whatever has been learnt in class, high quality feedback, and individualized content that reflects individual learning needs of the adult student in the language acquisition process.

Inputs are critically valuable and an essential characteristic of a web-based application used in the teaching and acquisition of English as a second language. That is because input is essential and reflects the current or modern socio-cognitive process prevailing in the modern learning contexts. Typically, input is valuable in addressing input during the learning of grammar, English Language lexicon, and other components that make the adult student proficient in the use of the language in the society. Therefore, across the learning spectrum, input is regarded, as an important component that web-based applications should reflect to address the needs of the adult learner. It is critical, therefore, for applications to provide the functionalities, features that allow the teacher interact with the student, and the student to interact with the teacher in the web-based applications environment. The type and kind of input supported on the applications is crucial in successful acquisition of the second language. In addition to that, the web-based application can only provide the students with sufficient exposure to authentic, comprehensible, and diverse materials to support the English Language acquisition program both for the teacher and the adult student.

Other findings show that the web-based applications supported the communication component in the acquisition process. Proficiency in ESL acquisition programs based on high quality input content can only be translated to practical knowledge if the applications provide the student with the opportunities to practice what they have been exposed. Communication is therefore, one of the most effective tools used in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. Communication enables the student practice what they have been taught previously. However, a critical evaluation of communication as a tool for effective acquisition of English Language as a Second Language shows that communication elicits understanding when coupled with feedback. In addition to that, communication creates an interactive environment that enables the teacher to comprehend the weaknesses in the student and the student to understand what the teacher is communicating to the student. The teacher in that environment is able to understand the needs of their students and strategize the best approach to address the problem. Thus, communication is viewed from the perspective of social culturalism and interactionism perspectives. Communication, therefore, creates an interactive environment that provides the student and the teacher with the opportunities to communicate and identify the weaknesses of the student and the best strategy to address them.

Therefore, it is safe to conclude that web-based applications provide an environment that is supportive of ESL acquisition programs for adults learners. Other factors such as feedback were strongly supported on the web-based applications. To help adult learners strengthen their grasp of the second language, feedback is a crucial component. Positive feedback, as many researchers agree in the acquisition of second languages encourages learners grow in their linguistic knowledge. When feedback is accompanies with confirmation of the learner’s progress, the student becomes motivated in the acquisition of the language with the benefits of motivation acting on the mind of the student. Thus, the strength of the learner’s interlanguage system is enhanced in the process. Feedback in this case can be either negative or positive. Negative feedback also provides the student with the an indication of their weaknesses and encourages the student to conduct further research in the ESL acquisition process, therefore, enhance their productive growth in the language. However, findings confirm what different researchers contend that negative feedback should not be used as a tool in the acquisition of English as a second language. Users, despite that disagreement, it has been proven that negative feedback and positive feedback are complimentary can be used to enhance the vocabulary and language syntax in the student. However it has also been researched and established that negative feedback can provide demotivate the student, therefore, be detrimental to the progress of the student rather than providing positive motivation in the acquisition of the second language. However, negative feedback is commonly seen as an approach that discourages the learner in engaging in active communication and interaction in a social environment, therefore, demotivating the student from continuing with the ESL acquisition program.

Other findings show that intrinsic and extrinsic factors act as different sources of motivation, for adults in ESL acquisition programs. Intrinsic factors are explained by the learner’s natural interest in the acquisition of the second language and use of the web-based applications. Without the motivating effect of using web-based applications and the ultimate benefits the learner intends to gain from the acquisition of English as a second language, it is difficult for the adult learner to be devoted in the acquisition of the language using technology. It is crucial to note that web-based applications integrate features that stimulate intrinsic and extrinsic motivation. It is due to the benefits associated with the use of web-based applications to stimulate intrinsic an extrinsic factors.

Typically, the features stimulate extrinsic motivation, which translate to extrinsic rewards such as between and improved performance. It is clear from the study that, extrinsic rewards also contribute significantly in motivating the adult learner to use web-based applications in the acquisition of the language. Since adult students pursue the second language acquisition program to interact with others in the society and seek for employment among other factors, they find themselves compelled to study the language as a second language to attain the extrinsic goals. Other motivating factors in the second language acquisition, in theory that compels adults to enroll in ESL program using web-based applications include thir hope to succeed in the task of acquiring English as a second language that could support them to communicate as carry out their daily tasks. Therefore, in their studies, adults regard that success draws on a combination of satisfaction and rewards. In theory, a number of underlying components characterize motivation. These include attitude, the need, and desire to be efficient in the acquisition and use of the language, the underlying need for the language, the desire to be competent in the interactive use of the language, the curiosity for the adult to be competent in the language, and other external motivating factors.

Success was identified as one of the factors that motivated adults to enroll and pursue the acquisition of English as a second language. Typically, the web-based applications integrate features that enable the teacher and the student to evaluate the student’s performance, and gradual success in the acquisition of English as a second language. However, not all adult students successfully pursue their courses to completion, thus, could drop their studies midway leading to attrition from the ESL acquisition programs. These included situational factors such as life circumstances of the student such as ability to acquire a job after completion, dispositional problems that included personal problems. These problems had a significant impact on the adult student’s behavioral patterns and persistence in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. Studies confirm that institutional factors had a positive influence in the attrition rates of adult students taking ESL classes using web-based applications. Institutional problems were directed specifically at the lack of appropriate support for the adult student taking ESL classes on web-based applications. Further research that narrowed down to situational and dispositional factors showed their significance in positively influencing adult students’ attrition rates in ESL acquisition programs. A strong relationship is established between persistence to use these web-based applications and the age of the student.

The results also show that previous qualifications held by the adult student, the adult student occupation, and future prospects in the use of the knowledge gained in English play a significant role in motivating the adult learner to use the web-based applications in the acquisition of English Language as a second language. Studies on the motivating effects on the use of web-based applications in the acquisition of English Language as a Second Language based on web-based applications show that the applications integrate features that allow for the development of the adult student in lexical competence in the acquisition of English as a Second Language. It is also crucial to note that the use of web-based technologies provide support for exercises that play a significant role in the teaching and acquisition of English as a second language. Typically, research shows that exercises on web-based applications that focus learner’s attention aloe them to gain proficiency in the acquisition of specific linguistic elements. To attain that, features integrated into the applications provide the baseline for students to enhance their competence in the acquisition process. Among the features crucial to the successful use of the application, include voice presentations, features that support interaction between the students and the teachers, and features that allow the construction of sentences for exercising. In addition to that, web-based applications provide the features that allow the use of providing feedback to the student. Typically, feedback is an essential component in the accusation of English as a second language since the adult student is able to get corrective feedback and identify errors and corrective measures to take in the acquisition process. Typically, the correctness or incorrectness is associated is related to grammar, pronunciations, vocabularies, spellings, and other elements in the acquisition process.

The functional requirements that a web 2.0 application has to meet to qualify for use in the teaching and acquisition of English Language as a Second Language is established on the on software experience, media competence, and learning objectives. One of the applications that provide the functionalities is the wiki application system. Wiki has an integrated central module that focuses on learner needs and adaptability to using web-based applications. Leaners using the Wiki web-based application find it easy and flexible to use as it is easy to install and configure with little or no assistance. The application also provides a high degree of navigability and structure and is possible to tag the application and configure it to suit one’s own learner needs. Below is a diagrammatic representation of an installed and ready to use wiki system.

According to the diagram, a number of integrated modules provide the flexibility and ability to meet predetermined objectives and goals. That is because the web 2.0 application consists of functionalities that are underlined below. One of the functionalities provided by the application to assist adults in the use of the web-based technology in the acquisition of English language, as a second language is learning center. According to many studies into the use of web-based applications such as the wiki system, the learning center is accessible through the RSS feeds and is implemented on the MediaWiki platform.

The application provides the knowledge base as the second feature. The knowledge base is a center of resources in the form of text, audio files, and other audio visual aids that help adults in the acquisition of English as a second language. Tagging is the main technique used in indexing the metadata contained in the system. Metadata is defined as data about data. It is commonly agreed upon the community of users that knowledge access from the knowledge base supports the concept of networking, which is a critical component in the acquisition of English Language a as second language. That is because networking creates a community of leaners and teachers. On the other hand, one is able to infer that networking on the platform creates a community of users who get informed about the knowledge stores in their network of nodes.

Another feature that critically characterizes the wiki web-based application used in the ESL adult class is the learning journal. The learning journal is a critical component of the ESL class that is used to raise awareness and interesting events about the thematic areas without a need to prescribe up to the standards and requirements for working in a knowledge center. That in itself is the basis for announcing any links that have been discovered. It also provides the teacher with the capability to upload and insert content such as video contributions and text that is valuable in the teaching of adults English as a second language. This feature is implemented using the WordPress 2.3 application.

Many provisions and additional components integrated into the systems such as the wiki system, which is a web-based application used by adults in the acquisition of English as a second language include alerting services. Such components include some of the typical features that are integrated into the web-based application. An alerting service provides updates about different information providers and the type of information being provided. It is however, critical to note that thematic areas at this point play a significant role in filtering update information on a regular basis. The output from the procedures used in thematic areas in filtering information are then passed on to different and appropriate areas which depends on interest and specific requirements. RSS is used to attain the above functionalities with its integrative mechanisms that the procedures are passed on to appropriate areas. From the above studies, the learning environment fostered is a blended learning environment. One of the applications that have been widely used in ESL acquisition programs with significant success is the Odysseyware software.

The application has integrated with different designs and features with the aim of endeavoring to meet the learning needs of the student. Typically, the approach used is to provide a learning environment that is as attractive as possible. Thus, the features are designed to provide the lessons to the target audience in entertaining and engaging way with pictures that provide very useful learning hints. The application is interactive, entertaining, while it provides such a challenging environment that captivates the mind of the student. Additional features integrated into the application provide an environment for videos and files as learning and instructional delivery materials.

The application is designed with a range of features that allows for an interactive environment between the student and the teacher during the acquisition and even after the acquisition. Other features integrated into the application to support the learning activities include graphics that display the curriculum entertaining and engaging ways. It is worth noting that the application is designed to meet the learning needs of people from different learning backgrounds and demographic distributions. However, it is worth noting that despite the issues borne in mind when designing the application, research has shown that adults and children face the same difficulties when studying English as a Second Language in ESL acquisition programs. Therefore, the use of the application with adults in ESL acquisition programs provides an appropriate learning environment that addresses the needs of the adult student during the ESL acquisition process.

The founding principles that Odysseyware software includes a curriculum design that enables the adult student be engaged in the acquisition process and uncover new and essential ideas for the acquisition of the language. In addition to that, the applications supports a combination of old and new teaching approaches by use of videos. Typically, the curriculum design factors crucial issues that are essential to the acquisition process. In this case, the application is designed to enable the student identify the ultimate goal that underlies the acquisition of English as a Second Language and enable the student be in control of their learning process. That enables the adult student to identify and establish a strong connection between the learning outcome and their comprehension of the language, and practical application of the language in a real life environment. Thus, the application enables the adult student and the teacher establishes parameters for proficiency level of the student and the acquisition milestones. In addition to that, the application consists of features that allow the teacher and the student to share interactively information on activities, and other approaches to help enhance the English acquisition proficiency for the student in ESL acquisition programs. It is also possible to listen to speeches by the teachers so that the student is able to learn on the use of spoken language. One of the traditional ways of instructing students is the use of flashcards. Flashcards enable the student to identify spelling and grammatical errors in a sentence and take corrective measures to improve the acquisition effectiveness of the student.

One of the crucial features that support the acquisition of English by the adult student is the “help” button. The “help” button enables the student to recast a program or any section of a lesson for attempting to follow on what was not understood. In addition to that, the application is designed with a feature that prompts the teacher to repeat a specific session if the student presses a button specifically designed for that task. It is also possible for the student utilize the translation key to change the language program to enhance comprehension of the program. It is important to note that the student can begin the lesson at a specific level by conducting a placement test offered on the application.

To make the acquisition process effective and efficient, the application has features that allow the computer to grade 80% of the work of the student, which however, can be modified by the teacher. It however, is important for the teacher to identify features that support their interactivity with the teacher. The application provides an environment for the teacher to know exactly how to use the application to teach student online.

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