Language Learning & Technology
Vol. 1, No. 1, July 1997, p. 1


Welcome to the inaugural issue of Language Learning & Technology. I would like to thank the sponsoring organizations and editorial board for helping bring this project to fruition.

Language Learning &Technology features both a message and a medium. The message is that the use of computers and other new technologies has now moved to the mainstream of language education; research and theory are thus needed more than ever to ensure that new technologies are used wisely and effectively. As reflected in the title of our journal, our focus is to put language learning first; technology will be considered not from a technical point of view, but rather as to how its use impacts the process of teaching and learning languages. Within this framework, we hope to publish a broad range of articles reporting on original research or linking previous research, learning theory, and teaching practices.

The medium is the World Wide Web. By publishing in this venue, we intend to disseminate research on this fast-developing field as broadly and as quickly as possible. We also hope, over time, to take increasing advantage of hypermedia capabilities of the web to provide better illustration of the concepts under discussion and to provide links to additional background information. We welcome the submission of both traditional papers and hypertexts.

Finally, we seek to make the journal interactive. Readers who feel that any of the articles merit an academic response are strongly encouraged to submit commentaries for publication in an upcoming issue.

This first issue is a special issue on "Language Learning and Technology: Defining the Research Agenda." Carol Chapelle tackles the question of an overall research framework for CALL, drawing on theories of instructed second language acquisition and discourse analysis. James Dean ("JD") Brown addresses the use of computers in language testing, examining recent research on computer-adaptive testing in the educational measurement literature and forecasting some of the directions future research on computers in language testing might take. Dorothy Chun and Jan Plass propose a model for researching text comprehension in multimedia environments, based on prior research and theories of second language reading and multimodal information processing. And Lourdes Ortega outlines research issues related to synchronous computer-assisted classroom discussion, drawing on a review of both first and second language computer-mediated communication studies.

Finally, this issue also includes reviews of HAL's Legacy: 2001's Computer as Dream and Reality, edited by David Stork; The Power of CALL, edited by Martha Pennington; and Boticelli Interactive's Japanese CD-ROM, Star Festival, as well as our On the Net column by Jean LeLoup and Robert Ponterio, and our Emerging Technologies column by Bob Godwin-Jones.

Thank you for your interest in our first issue. Though the journal is available for free, we need to demonstrate our base of support if we are to continue to get grant funding. Therefore, we would greatly appreciate if you would take a few moments to enter your free subscription. And we look forward very much to receiving your submissions as well. Feel free to contact me at if you would like to discuss a possible submission.


Mark Warschauer, Editor


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