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07 Jun

Computer Assisted Instruction (CAI)

Computer Assisted Instruction (CAI)

It is defined as an interaction between a student, a computer controlled display and a response entry device for the purpose of achieving educational outcomes. It is essentially learning with computers and not about computers.



  1. Learning is individualized.
  2. Increases the teacher’s resources.
  3. Less time is needed to understand difficult concepts.
  4. Offers a wide range of experiences especially through simulation programs.
  5. Offers accurate feedback and can be used diagnostically.
  6. Can handle large volumes of date.
  7. Active participation of each student.



  1. It is expensive.
  2. Lack of human interaction may cause boredom.
  3. The computer cannot appreciate the emotions and feelings of students.
  4. The role of the student is that of responder rather than initiator.


Linguists today have come to acknowledge the fact that computers will play a major role in language learning in the near future. The characteristics of the computer that can be made use of in language learning are:

  1. Computers can store vast amounts of data. Language is concerned with words and sentences. So computers can be used to store any kind of data related to a language.
  2. The computers can interact with the learners through its monitor. Thus the learner can improve his vocabulary, translate words, answer multiple choice questions, etc.
  3. Computer graphics and animation can bring to life many things and ideas which may be otherwise difficult to explain in the classroom.
  4. Pronouncing dictionaries nowadays provide interactive pronouncing dictionary CD- ROMs that can be played on the computer.
  5. Computer programs focusing on phonetics and phonology can be useful.
  6. Animations on the speech mechanism can be both interesting and illuminating.
  7. The computer can develop an appreciation of real language situations and enhance the learner’s imagination and linguistic capabilities.


Copyright © Manu Mangattu, Assistant Professor, Department of English, SGC Aruvithura

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