This has resulted in new approaches of teaching and learning and this has made it possible to devise teaching plans within and outside the classrooms. The incorporation of technology into education is supported by a number of theories including behaviorism, constructivism, situated learning theory, collaborative learning theory, informal and lifelong learning theory (Naismith et al., 2004).
In the field of teaching and learning new languages, many models that are based on the utilization of technologies have emerged. These technologies play a crucial role in the improvement of the educational process. Computer-assisted language learning (CALL) is one of these models in which students use computers to learn the language (Levy, 1997).Although CALL gained its popularity in many developed countries in the early 1980s, Saudi Arabia unfortunately did not introduce computers to its educational system until the last decade of the twentieth century (Oyaid, 2007). As a result of the constant developments in the field of ICT, a new stage of CALL developed known as mobile-assisted language learning (MALL) in which students use mobile devices in the language learning process (Begum, 2011). These devices are the new generation of computers and include personal portable mobile devices such as cell phones, MP3/MP4 players, personal digital assistants and palmtop computers used for language learning (Kukulska-hulme, 2008). For the purpose of this paper, the researcher will focus on the use of smart phones and tablets for the delivery of higher education.
Regardless of the challenges that result due the usage of mobile devices in education, a number of successful attempts have occurred in different parts of the world. This successful usage resulted in improving the linguistic competence of the students (for example, Thornton and Houser, 2003; Myers, 2000). However, it needs to be understood that in order to successfully implement MALL in any ...Show more