Listening Comprehension Online Course for EFL Public School Teachers: A Case Study Based on Activity Theory
Based on the notion that any human activity is mediated by a culturally defined reality, one of the main contributions of the activity theory to the educational context is the explanation of the human activity as a dynamic process of actions and operations regulated by objects and motives. As we are producers and products of ourselves, what people do represents the basic unit of analysis if we are to study human behavior. So by using the activity theory framework we can understand the individual and the collective human praxis from a socio-cultural- historical perspective.This paper is based on a case study research carried out with EFL public school teachers in São Paulo, Brazil. These teachers attended a professional development program, which is a result from a partnership between Cultura Inglesa (an English School sponsored by the British Council) and Edulang – a research group that belongs to Lingüística Aplicada e Estudos de Linguagem (Applied Linguistics and Language Studies), a post-graduate program from Pontifícia Universidade Católica de São Paulo (PUC-SP).
At the time of the research, this professional development program constituted of six modules, four online and two presential courses. The program aims to contribute to quality improvement of English teaching in the public educational system. It also offers oportunities for the EFL teachers to engage in the new technology of information and communication world. Besides, it also promotes colaborative and reflective ways of learning. The Listenig Comprehension online module is the focus of this investigation. Its main objective is to develop listening comprehension strategies based on four types of genre: interview, documentary, musical clip and internet audio news.
Keywords: Activity theory, EFL language learning, adult learning, distance education
Dr. Angelita Quevedo
Teacher, English Department