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Reducing Distance in Language Learning (using technologies)

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This presentation considers ways to use emerging technologies as a tool for improving foreign language instruction.

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Reducing Distance in Language Learning (using technologies)

  1. 1. Reducing Distance in Language Learning through Social Networking, Video Development, and Website Integration Eileen O’Connor, Ph.D. Eileen.oconnor@esc.edu Empire State College / State University of New York (USA) June 2014
  2. 2. Reducing Distance in Language Learning through Social Networking, Video Development, and Website Integration Reducing Distance in Language Learning through Social Networking, Video-Development, and Website Integration The need for global communications and interactions in the fast-shrinking world requires 21st century skills and understanding. Language and linguistics instructors are essential educators who provide students with opportunities to develop strong foreign-language communication and cultural skills. In this paper, resources for documenting, sharing and across-geography interacting that can strengthen communication skills and encourage cross-cultural connections will be considered. Readily available tools for social networking (such as Facebook), video incorporation, and website development will be presented and suggestions for their use and integration into and across courses be will be highlighted. With ready access to global information and communication, language instructors can now have their students study, analyze, reflect-on, and immerse-themselves in different languages and cultures. Students can demonstrate their growing use of language through integration of video and audio in the works that they develop; readily accessible e-media can make this form of expression easily mastered. By providing students with a complex, stimulating, and memorable experiences of language, linguistics, and culture, students can be moved far beyond textbook, grammar, and language-lab studies. A conceptual / academic framework that can support and justify the inclusion of these tools that encourage interpersonal interactions and communications will be addressed as well.
  3. 3. The role & importance of foreign language instruction Address global demand • 21st century skills • Commerce & trade Develop cultural understanding & awareness • Present/ popular culture • Economics, geography, history Develop foreign language fluency • Learning through integration of usage with technology
  4. 4. Motivators to improve foreign language acquisition Ways to ensure & monitor success • Self video (easy / private) • eJournals, websites & Facebook (growth over time) Quick access to foreign languages & cultures • Internet in other languages • Social networks / virtual meetings • Sharing & support Digital natives preferences • Interactivity • More than text • Multiple intelligences
  5. 5. Integrating emerging tech & internet can support foreign language instruction in many areas Emerging Technologies & Internet Language Performance Cultural understanding Teacher resources All technologies can be adapted to support these different areas
  6. 6. Ways to use internet-accessible resources in language instruction Educational Framework
  7. 7. Educational frameworks – and possible example applications  Immersion / usage / communication (from language and linguistics literature)  Community of Practice (Lave & Wenger) in the target language  Zone of Proximal Development (Vygotsky)  Sharing the learning experience - YouTube  Motivation for the learners  Safe ways to try – can listen and learn before speaking  Technologies with which students are comfortable already  Analysis and study  Comparing different events & cultures  Assessment that are authentic  Live recordings of language usage  Embedded assessments in the portfolio or Facebook; observe growth over time  Visiting peers / badge
  8. 8. Ways to use internet-accessible resources in language instruction Websites & Facebook
  9. 9. Facebook / Websites – can store student work, as will be seen in the next slides Website Facebook Text Unlimited More restrictions Images can be uploaded? Yes Yes Videos can be uploaded? Yes Yes Make links to other sites? Unlimited Through Likes / somewhat limited but easy Ease of creation Can be more challenging, but new methods are improving quickly Easy Today, many of the suggestions for foreign language instructors can be addressed by both platforms
  10. 10. Easy to develop & free website tools – many templates available Consider: www.wix.com or www.webbly.com
  11. 11. Robust, but more involved, websites from Google are available too
  12. 12. Even translation programs built into web-site building features  Have your students test and see the accuracy & quality of these services
  13. 13. Facebook & Website – authored by the students  Quick development & updating  Easy integrating & storing e-resources  Videos can be uploaded  Post of ongoing learning  Can be shared with the world – but after a safe time  Sharing with the class & with groups  Have students analyze examples from other countries  Live cultural studies possible  Students will need to understand and interact with other cultures for jobs, trade, and interactions
  14. 14. Ways to start students using Facebook, an example . . . http://iltl.wordpress.com/2010/11/11/using-facebook-for-language-learning/ • Practical suggestions for starting quickly and reliably with Facebook – a scaffolded approach • Students are guided through things-to-find about another country • Has students finding videos in the target language – an extra boost to learning the language
  15. 15. Another example: my Professional Facebook page
  16. 16. Videos can be added to Facebook
  17. 17. Ways to use internet-accessible resources in language instruction Self-videotaping (ie. YouTube)
  18. 18. Video & self-video (YouTube) uses – visual & audio together Video / Internet Target language exposure Cultural exposure Self video Practice in safe environments Demonstrate growth over time
  19. 19. Use video to have students demonstrate increased language proficiency over time Increased fluency Progressive taping Stories, plays, vignettes Safe environment for practice
  20. 20. Ways to use internet-accessible resources in language instruction Emerging ideas – based on technology
  21. 21. Using ideas surfacing from emerging technologies, such as . . . Badging & peer review  Have students review the web-posted work of their peers Offer student-offered best practice badges  Expands dedication, interest, and commitment  Can be separate from the course evaluation too
  22. 22. Have peers review work -- offer badges based on the “Votes” of classmates
  23. 23. Ways to use internet-accessible resources in language instruction Virtual reality
  24. 24. Using Second Life – a collection of virtual reality locations  Requiring actual visits to different cultures and exhibits  Talking to avatars from other countries  Making machinima in other language That is, videotape the avatar(s) Demonstrate performance
  25. 25. Virtual locations
  26. 26. Moscow http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Moscow%20Island/191/186/21
  27. 27. Integrating language education through the use of e-tools – ways to think  Across courses – create a learning journal / growth over time / meeting individuals from other countries  Analyzing cultural examples – comparing to textbooks / interview others from different countries  Gathering insights and writing papers that use info and images from other websites, virtual location  Requiring communications with social networks, forums, and virtual reality in other languages
  28. 28. Ways to use internet-accessible resources in language instruction Gathering ideas, resources, and professional development from other language / linguistics professionals Some examples follow
  29. 29. Many language instructor resources available  Materials and resources – via the web or Facebook  Instructor networks and social networks – join communities on an ongoing basic  Attend conferences
  30. 30. Foreign Language websites vetted by instructors
  31. 31. Website with different foreign-language cultural perspectives
  32. 32. Facebook pages devoted to Language Learning https://www.facebook.com/LLTJournal
  33. 33. Center for Language Education & Research (CLEAR) https://www.facebook.com/CLEARatMSU
  34. 34. Learn from links from these trusted organizations Get quickly to quality, web- accessible resource
  35. 35. Learning language improvement through video usage http://sisaljournal.org/archives/sep12/hirschel_yamamoto_lee/ Initial results appear to indicate that student videos are correlated with a positive effect upon students’ interest in, enjoyment of, and confidence in speaking English, but not with perceptions of increased general English ability or ability to interact in English. . . . Taken together, the qualitative and quantitative data point to a pattern whereby, over the eight month course of study, students appeared to be developing a greater interest in and enjoyment of communicating in English.
  36. 36. Her research investigated what kept adult English learners of Italian motivated during a beginners' course. Though the students joined the classes for a variety of reasons and were taught by different teachers using different approaches, it quickly became apparent that maintaining motivation was closely connected to the social elements involved. . . . "We found that those most likely to stick with it were the ones who developed a social bond within a group,“ . . . "For them, learning Italian became part of their social identity: something they do one evening a week with a group of pleasant and like-minded people. For both groups [in the study], social participation was the driving force for sustaining motivation." http://www.theguardian.com/education/2014/mar/19/language-learning-motivation-brain-teaching
  37. 37. Consider workshops in using technologies in language instruction, created by and for teachers
  38. 38. Locate professional development, such as this self-efficacy in language-learning online webinar https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bw4sOfUS6p8
  39. 39. Find compiled repositories of resources
  40. 40. Commercial applications are available too
  41. 41. Ways to use internet-accessible resources in language instruction Making this happen
  42. 42. Planning & training for technology acquisition Partner with other disciplines •Computer & writing instructors •Modules to share among all disciplines Students self-support •Peer training •Badging •Students help other students Integrate tutorials •Place in your course •Integrate the many supports and links available
  43. 43. Integrating technologies can help support the VITAL role of language education Address global demand • 21st century skills • Commerce & trade Develop cultural understanding & awareness • Present/ popular culture • Economics, geography, history Develop foreign language fluency • Learning through integration of usage with technology

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