Learner Autonomy and Web 2.0 - Marco Cappellini

Learner Autonomy and Web 2.0 - Marco Cappellini

Informal Social Networking for Language Learning: Insights into Autonomy Stances

Learner Autonomy and Web 2.0 - Marco Cappellini

Katerina Zourou [+-]
Web2Learn, Greece
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Katerina Zourou is a researcher in the field of computer supported collaborative language learning and the owner-manager of Web2Learn, Greece. She is passionate about the role of open and social technologies in foreign language education. She is the author of peer reviewed research papers (accessible at http://tiny.cc/CALLpublications), the editor of a scholar book (Social Networking for Language Education (with Marie-Noëlle Lamy), Palgrave MacMillan, 2013) and journal special issues (Social dynamics in open educational language practice, ALSIC journal, 2016; Social media and language learning: (r)evolution?, ALSIC journal, 2012). Together with Shannon Sauro, Katerina is currently preparing a special issue for Language Learning and Technology, entitled CALL in the wild (expected in 2019). Katerina is a regular invited speaker at European institutions and is involved as partner and/or project manager in more than ten projects funded by the European Commission and the Council of Europe/European Centre for Modern Languages.
Anthippi Potolia [+-]
University of Paris 8
Anthippi Potolia is a senior lecturer-researcher at the University of Paris 8 - Vincennes Saint-Denis (Experice, EA 3971). Her main interests are Computer Assisted Language Learning and Discourse Analysis. Her research topics involve effects of computer mediation as well as telecollaborative practices online. She co-authors (with Christine Develotte and Eija Suomela-Salmi), a book on social media in the European daily press (preliminary title: News about social media: where global and local intertwine. A discourse analysis of social (media) representations in the European free press, expected in 2018). Her latest books are: Suzuki, E., Potolia, A. Cambrone-Lasnes, S. & al. (eds.) (2017). Penser la didactique du plurilinguisme et ses mutations : idéologies, politiques, dispositifs. PUR ; Potolia, A. & Stratilaki (eds.) (2017). Regards croisés en télécollaboration / Exchanging views on telecollaboration. Special issue of Alsic, journal https://alsic.revues.org ; Potolia, A. & Jamborova Lemay, D. (eds.) (2015). Enseignement/apprentissage des langues et pratiques numériques émergentes, Paris, EAC.
Filio Zourou [+-]
Swiss Distance Learning University
Filio Zourou, Ph.D., is scientific collaborator in the Department of Psychology at the Swiss Distance Learning University. Before that she was teaching assistant in the Department of Psychology and the Department of Sciences and Techniques of Readaptation at the University of Lyon, France. She also worked as research assistant in the Reference Center for Learning Difficulties at the University Hospitals of Lyon and at the Cognitive Mechanism Study Research Laboratory at the University of Lyon from which she received her doctorate degree in Cognitive Science and Psychology.


This chapter explores learner autonomy in Busuu, a social networking site for language learning (SNSLL). The aim of this research is to analyze autonomy stances, as individual and social strands of social network based activity evolve and intertwine in this informal learning community. It particularly questions whether social activity, facilitated by social networking and gaming features, affects learner autonomy on the individual and/or social dimensions. The paper adopts a mixed methods approach in the analysis of quantitative data (user data and closed-ended replies to a survey) and qualitative data (open-ended replies to the survey). We first analyze user activity as an indicator of learner stances, individual and social. We then explore the role of social networking and game mechanics in the adoption of these stances with regard to learner autonomy. Finally, we share insights into the reconceptualization of learner autonomy development in the light of social network based informal learning.

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Zourou, Katerina; Potolia, Anthippi; Zourou, Filio. Informal Social Networking for Language Learning: Insights into Autonomy Stances. Learner Autonomy and Web 2.0. Equinox eBooks Publishing, United Kingdom. p. 141-167 Apr 2017. ISBN 9781781795972. https://www.equinoxpub.com/home/view-chapter/?id=32710. Date accessed: 04 Mar 2024 doi: 10.1558/equinox.32710. Apr 2017

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