A Spanish Speaker and a Friend: Identity Transformation in Foreign Language Chat

  • Adam MendelsonEmail author
Part of the New Language Learning and Teaching Environments book series (NLLTE)


Analysis of chat logs from a computer-mediated communication (CMC)-based tutoring project for students of Spanish as a foreign language reveals the online identity transformation of a focal student. Early in the project, the focal student presented himself as an inadequate Spanish speaker who was highly critical of his Spanish class. By the end of the project, he appeared as a content and competent learner who regularly spoke Spanish both in and out of class. Intertwined with his online transformation is evidence of a strengthening friendship with a classmate that spanned the chat room, the classroom and beyond. This case points to interpersonal relationships as a relevant factor in transfer between online and offline language learning and identity.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of CaliforniaBerkeleyUSA

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