What Is Central To Language Learning In Both Online And Classroom-based Environm While one cannot be achieved in isolation, an effective online language learning program can be about more than just teaching grammar or etiquette. Here is how.
What Is Central To Language Learning In Both Online And Classroom-based Environm
How you go about language learning may ultimately determine whether you’ll succeed or fail.
For online learners, the use of platforms like Coursera (www.coursera.com) or other subscription-based online learning resources (e.g. Udemy.com) may allow you to take a random language course at a given time.
Learning online by phone or in a virtual classroom setting, especially for those who have limited or no internet connectivity, is also a viable option for students. But, like any other skill, language learning should not be restricted to one platform or form of learning.
Are any language skills truly cloudless? And how can language learning methods evolve in a way that both delivers on convenience while staying true to an authentic language learning experience? Here are six easy ideas for improving your language learning experience online and in your home.
I have a friend who began online language learning a couple of years ago, via Coursera, and at first had to read the entire text of every online course before he was comfortable viewing the other video elements (such as readings, interview clips, and other videomaking features). When I asked him what his next-step goal was, he commented, “I want to be able to rate the videos as having a ‘Klout Score’ and be able to link my Klout Score to my password.”
This was a great idea because both Coursera and Udemy utilize the Klout platform as a user rating resource. Klout Score enables users to easily share their score via social media with their friends and followers, letting everyone know what they rate as of the time of viewing.
Easily track and share your learning progress online
An easy option for online learners who want to track and share their language learning progress is with cloud-based services like Canvas and SpeechWorks Cloud – for free. Or, if you want to purchase an entirely new text-based platform for your online language course or for a related platform, like Hibernate for long-term language learning, the option to track your progress and connect your course to your Klout Score is available. The technology is absolutely free.
Voice recordings of virtually all written material is on offer
I was speaking with a friend who is active in online language learning. He had decided that his online courses were taking too long (for which I was sorry). The Spanish class he was currently taking had him working on vocabulary every morning until he had mastered it. He wanted to learn more.
He needed to find a voice-recorded activity on the web that he could go through and use to familiarize himself with the language fluently – that is, without having to spend money on a live teacher, professional audio classes, or pricey materials from Sony and other pro vendors.
The answer was VoiceTune.
Available at the web-based Standard and Professional versions of VoiceTune (which cost around $29/year), they offer a library of spoken dialogue videos to help you master your language faster.
The skill can be accessed by simply clicking on the First Line voice option, viewing the current record, and clicking the Repeat button to read it back. They also have a YouTube video series on how to use their service, which was helpful to me as I wasn’t fluent in Spanish at the time.
Improve your sound quality by listening to natural language sounds instead of having a tutor
I have never spoken to anyone outside of my immediate family, so it took me years to actually feel comfortable and confident conversing in another language. However, I now speak in fluent Spanish for my friends and colleagues, and for a blog called Intlreads.
As soon as I discovered Occidental, a website that offers natural language learning and practice at the user’s convenience, I fell in love with the platform and loved the audio tools. I became a fan and follower of Occidental and have been using them ever since.
In addition to listening to audio sources of natural language sounds (like the sound of someone chewing gum), users can also record themselves interacting and answering questions in their language of choice. While the views displayed on the Occidental homepage are focused on what users say and how they say it, users can customize their own transcripts to display the content of their commentary.
Once you have recorded your audio commentary, you can save and email it directly to yourself or to other Occidental users. It is free.
For more professional and academic content, check out OLO Advisors, where you will find full-length audio and video blogs and lectures that take you deeper into particular areas.