Do we still need a teacher

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


Mobile device usage for language learning continues to grow in step with the recent technological developments in society, and this new mode of delivery has led to methods of learning unknown until very recently. Outcomes of research are currently confirming the predictions of Puentedura (2006) who suggested new technologies would eventually lead to learning opportunities previously impossible.

However, studies are increasingly appearing that not only add learning possibilities to those traditionally found in classroom settings, but that also replace the functions found in the classroom. For instance, task instructions have been given by the technology rather than the teacher (e.g. Grimshaw, 2018), and even formative interaction has been seen to take place between student and device, rather than student and teacher (e.g. Cavus, 2017). Furthermore, several such studies are claiming better learning attainment results through these methods compared with traditional teacher-led ones, in research involving control and experimental groups.

Research outcomes such as these lead logically to questions: How far has technology evolved already in its ability to replace teacher functions? Can it evolve further still? Ultimately, will we still need a teacher in the future? Are there boundaries beyond which technology cannot usurp the teacher role?

This presentation, therefore, introduces a range of recent research on the topic that incorporates statistical analysis of learning benefits, makes suggestions of what the possibilities are for teaching through technology might be both presently and in the future, and aims to answer the question: do we still need a teacher?
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusAccepted for publication - 24 Aug 2021
EventEUROCALL 2021 - Paris, Paris, France
Duration: 24 Aug 202127 Aug 2021


ConferenceEUROCALL 2021
Internet address


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