Voices of Four Taiwanese College Students' Experiences with the Test of English for International Communication (TOEIC) Preparation (PREP) Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL)
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The primary purpose of this study was to identify Taiwanese college students’ experiences regarding the use of TOEIC PREPARATION (TOEIC PREP) software. In this qualitative study design, the researcher explored the college students’ feelings and attitudes as they prepared for the TOEIC test through the TOEIC PREP software provided by the school’s online platform. The research question guiding the study was: “What are the experiences of four college Taiwanese students about the TOEIC PREP software?” The four participating students were selected from 50 college juniors who used the TOEIC PREP software for two semesters in order to prepare for the TOIEC test. All of the students majored in Applied Foreign Languages and were enrolled in a required TOIEC preparation course at the university in Taiwan. In the middle and again at the end of students’ test preparation process, the researcher conducted and audio-recorded an approximately 30-minute interview with each of the four participants via Skype. Four themes emerged from the study: (a) students’ motivations derived from their English learning backgrounds, (b) online learning and flexible scheduling, (c) language test preparation through online learning, and (d) improving performance on the TOEIC test. The themes conceptualized from the research questions were mentioned and inter-related by each of the four participating students. The results of this study were as follows: 1.) In the school-required TOEIC test preparation course, the four participating students tended to indicate that the TOEIC PREP software did help them through the TOEIC test, but not all of them agreed that the online learning could replace the traditional face-to-face-class. 2.) Students having similar English learning backgrounds and learning English in a non-grammar-based classroom setting might have more interest in continuing their language learning. 3.) Free software, like TOEIC PREP, provided by the school could be a big motive for students in their TOEIC test preparation. 4.) As daily computer users, students are unlikely to need to spend extra time learning how to use the online learning software. 5.) Besides using the TOEIC PREP software for test preparation, students also were striving to improve their reading and listening competence from the process of practice. 6.) The TOEIC PREP software absolutely could help the students prepare for the test because of its flexibility of practice and immediate feedback.
Chen, To-Yu (2014). Voices of Four Taiwanese College Students' Experiences with the Test of English for International Communication (TOEIC) Preparation (PREP) Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL). Doctoral dissertation, Texas A & M University. Available electronically from