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Great evaluation results for Utrecht summer course on MFL speaking competences & Technology

on Sun, 07/08/2012 - 23:23

The Utrecht session of the Comenius course on MFL speaking competences & Technology took place in in the first week of July. 


The course, one of the results of the EU project NIFLAR, is a 5-day, international course on methodologies for new technologies in computer assisted language learning (CALL). It is an initiative of a partnership consisting of Utrecht University in collaboration with Valencia University, TELLConsult and the Utrecht Summer School.
TELLConsult was invited to chair both the Utrecht and the Valencia session, taking place In October 2012 in Spain.


With 15 international participants, mostly language teachers with practices in primary and secondary education, it was well attended.

Topics included both asynchronous and synchronous forms of and tools for Computer Mediated Communication (CMC) such as Vocaroo & Video Web Conferencing and Second Life & Open Sim as language learning environments. Special attention was paid to the theoretical underpinnings of Task Based Language Learning and Teaching with a focus on the task design grid as developed in the NIFLAR project.

On the final day a number of resources and strategies were suggested that participants could use to support their further professional development. Find the full day-to-day programme on the course page

 
In addition to the Utrecht University Prof. Rick de Graaff and researcher Silvia Canto,  at work in their respective workshops in the pics below
 
Nick Zwart (3DLes) and Joe Dale (Integrating ICT into the MFL classroom) were part of the team as invited lecturers. The latter contributed a workshop on asynchronous communication.See the picture on the right below where Joe is coaching participants in familiarizing themselves with a number of Web 2.0 applications.

As a demonstration of the 'expert at a distance' format for videowebconferencing Heike Philip (Let's talk online) was kind enough to present on recent developments in online language learning and - as a follow-up - showed participants around 'inworld' on Edunation Islands

Both the formal evaluation results and the informal Tweets show that the course contents and social programme were most positively appreciated by the participants. Find some Twitter messages and pics of excerpts of the evaluation survey below to support this conclusion. Also some valuable suggestions for improvement were made, e.g. to make more time available to explore applications and develop materials.