De-duotanging Core French: Case study of a Digital Learning Space Portfolio in a Grade 8 Classroom

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Jurkowski, Susanna
digital learning space portfolio , middle school students , FSL , Students' Perceptions of Themselves as L2 Learners , Needs of Adolescent Learners , Role of Teacher
This case study explored the use of a digital learning space portfolio by Grade 8 French as a Second Language (FSL) students. The focus of this study was on the meaning students assigned to the use of the digital learning space portfolios and how their perceptions of themselves as FSL learners changed while using the system. The study addresses the existing gap in the literature. The digital learning space portfolio was created based on the needs of adolescent learners as identified in the literature. The literature also suggests that embedding assessment and learning in one place, that is accessible to all, improves student engagement. The study took place at a rural school in Eastern Ontario and included fourteen students, six male and eight female. The results indicate that students had positive experiences using the digital learning space portfolio which supported student participation in the FSL classroom. In addition, the students reported positive perceptions of themselves as FSL learners while they were engaged in using the tool. The results also indicate that the teacher was integral in developing and modelling positive use of the digital learning space portfolio. Further research regarding the use of the digital learning space portfolio in other disciplines and at other grade levels should focus on teacher support to ensure successful use of these types of tools in education.
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