ESL Learners’ Interaction in an Online Discussion via Facebook

  •  Halizah Omar    
  •  Mohamed Amin Embi    
  •  Melor Md Yunus    


This study aims to investigate ESL learners’ participation in an information-sharing task conducted via Facebook (FB) groups and their feedback on the use of FB groups as the platform for the activity. An intact group of 31 learners taking a communication course at a public university participated in the study. Data analysed in this paper were derived from a threaded online discussion and an open-ended questionnaire. Descriptive statistical analysis showed the learners’ substantial contribution to the group discussion despite their limited language ability and technical problems. Thematic analysis revealed that the use of FB as a platform for the information-sharing task received very positive feedback from the participants, thus suggesting it would be a promising virtual tool and environment to promote interaction in English learning. More activities using FB groups should be assigned for learners to practice and use communicative language. Promoting awareness of available online tools and modelling effective use of the tools are suggested to help enhance learners’ online interactions.

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