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An Open Assignment Bank … For Languages

From the editor: We’re happy to repost this entry with permission from Barbara Sawhill. You can catch more of her thoughts at Language Lab Unleashed. We welcome Barbara to our community of language educators for the progress of OER.

I’m a big fan of the creative work that happens at the Division of Teaching and Learning Technologies (DTLT) at The University of Mary Washington.

Papiers-Mâchés, a New OER for French Writing

Some years ago, we found that our French majors here at NYU were not writing at the level we had hoped for. This led us to reexamine how we incorporated writing throughout our program.
We  decided to try Gammes d’écritures (CNDP fr), a French writing software program. Our students made amazing progress, and they truly enjoyed working with the software that allowed them to progress at their own rhythm. However, the texts and interface of this program were outdated. We felt its method of instruction could be modernized into a more comprehensive tutorial format.

Emerging Leader Creates Language Learning OER

We have been following academic technologist Todd Bryant and his ideas for creating meaningful language exchange experiences online. Todd created an open educational resource, the Mixxer, to do just that. (See The Mixxer Launches Spanish and English Language MOOCs.)

Building Community at AATSP

Conferences are a great place to talk to teachers and hear what’s on their minds.  The Spanish and Portuguese teachers at the AATSP conference in San Antonio gave us lots of terrific ideas. Here are a few:

Meet the iTunes U Language Learner

Have you ever wondered about those students who are learning foreign languages on iTunes? There are over 600 free language learning collections on iTunes. People are using them. What do you know about these students?

Shareworthy — COERLL’s Webinar Series

Your foreign language department will thank you for sharing COERLL’s Webinar Series, all about open educational resources (OER) for language learning. Here’s what we covered:
Finding Open Media for Foreign Language Instruction Learn how to search for and find high-quality authentic OER (multimedia, realia, interviews, etc.) for use in language teaching and learning. Watch the webinar.
media

iTunes U: bringing language learning to a different audience

[edit this post by Fernando Rubio]
Below is a link to a paper I gave at the e-Learning Symposium in Southampton University in the UK about the iTunes U language learner. The results show that most iTunes U learners have quite a different profile to university learners: from their age and gender to their occupation and motivations for accessing languages iTunes U resources.

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