Using Audio-Visual Aids and Computer-Assisted Language Instruction (CALI) to Overcome Learning Difficulties of Speaking in Students of Special Needs

Sadeq Ali Saad Al- Yaari


Background & Aims: Teaching speaking skill has always been a part of teaching any language skills as it helps language learners to promote self-presentation. It is known that speaking is a result of listening. Here, we asked if using audio-visual aids and computer-assisted language instruction (CALI) by speech language Therapists (SLTs) could make differences in the performance of the students of special needs.

Methods: The performance of forty students (males and females) of special needs between 8- 18 years old study speaking at al-Malādh school for teaching students of special needs was compared that of another group (control group) of the same number and similar age. Both groups underwent the treatment by the same SLT except for that with the first group, the SLT used audio-visual aids and CALI but not with the other. Pre-and-posttests have been administered at the beginning and end of the semester (Before and after teaching speaking course). Students' performance was linguistically and statistically assessed.

Results: Outlined results revealed a greater pattern of differences between the two groups and this can be clearly seen in the performance of the first group (where audio-visual aids and CALI were used) at the posttest (74.07% vs. 25.52%). In comparison to the males’ performance level, the females registered higher scores than those scored by males (1494 vs. 1469). When optimized, these data partially support the idea that using audio-visual aids and CALI are important in teaching language productive skills in general and speaking skill in particular.

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