Exploring the affordances of WeChat for facilitating teaching, social and cognitive presence in semi-synchronous language exchange

Yuping Wang, Wei-Chieh Fang, Julia Han, Nian-Shing Chen

Abstract


This research is an exploratory study that evaluates the affordances of WeChat for the development of a community of inquiry (CoI) in semi-synchronous language exchange supported by WeChat.WeChat is an instant messenger that facilitates a multimodal environment in which interaction can happen synchronously, semi-synchronously and asynchronously through text, audio, video conferencing and a variety of pedagogically facilitating affordances. Differing from most existing studies in CoI, this research investigates all three presences in the CoI framework, that is, teaching, social, and cognitive presence, as they emerged in the language exchange between students of Mandarin Chinese and students of English. The findings from this research confirm the establishment of the three presences in CoI, but with features specific to WeChat-supported semi-synchronous language exchange. Recommendations for future research into CoI facilitated by WeChat are also put forward.


Keywords


Community of Inquiry, WeChat, language exchange, affordances, semi-synchronous

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.14742/ajet.2640