Learner expectations and satisfaction in a US-Spain intercultural telecollaboration

Ana Gimeno

Abstract

The focus of this paper is the analysis of data collected after conducting a telecollaboration project throughout one semester with 12 advanced learners of Spanish from a mid-sized Atlantic coast university in the USA and 12 higher intermediate students of English from a technical university in Spain. Data was collected through a questionnaire enquiring about learner expectations at the outset of the project and a final survey seeking detailed information about learner satisfaction in order to implement improvements in subsequent projects. In-depth analysis of the data shed light on the perceived benefits and challenges of the intercultural telecollaboration project. There was evidence that the students were very open-minded about discussing multifaceted intercultural issues and very positive toward collaborating with fellow students from a different cultural background. The surveys also suggest that the learners’ expected benefits aligned with their stated benefits after carrying out the project, which led us to believe that possible frustrations and communication breakdowns had been kept to a minimum.

Keywords

telecollaboration; intercultural exchanges; learner expectations; learner satisfaction; English as a foreign language; Spanish as a foreign language

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