Spring 2001

TECHNOLOGY-ENHANCED LANGUAGE LEARNING

... at Colby is a new seasonal newsletter produced by Colby College Language Technology Consultant / LRC director, Jon Reinhardt. Contact him at jsreinha@colby.edu or Colby extension 3898.

... is a better term than computer-assisted language learning, as it acknowledges the application of technology beyond just computers (e.g. focus on networks, not on hard drives), and takes the computer out of the driver's seat. Thinking of learning as something that can benefit from enhancement, rather than as something that requires assistance, might be considered a paradigm shift in approach towards teaching and learning with technology.


ONLINE CLASS JOURNALS

Steven Watt's German 493 class and Cliff Roberson's Spanish 135 class are both using online class journals this semester to complete class assignments. The instructor posts a topic, usually a question designed to provoke feedback or a response to a reading. Students then post individually or in groups, returning to the page to read postings from other students.

Online class journals are a way to allow students the benefits of peer review--reading what other students write about class topics and creating an asynchronous class dialogue. It is also unique in that it allows a level of discussion that could not happen in a regular class--its online nature both allows students more time for reflection and provides a more permanent forum for the discussion.

To set up the class journal we adapted the Colby guestbook script and created basic class webpages. If you are interested in setting up a site and a journal for your class, please contact Jon in the LRC.

German 493 The Image of "Amerika" in German Literature and Film

http://www.colby.edu/~sawatt/gm493/stundenplan.html

Spanish 135 Introduction to Literary Analysis

http://www.colby.edu/spanish/sp135/description.html

Idea for a workshop or website? Want to do something with technology inyour class? Let Jon know--that's what he's here for. Individual tutoring sessions are available.


ONLINE DELIVERY OF COURSE AUDIO MATERIALS

By fall semester we hope to offer online (WWW) delivery of course audio materials. Students will log in to the Virtual Listening Lab, part of the LRC website, and listen to streaming audio QuickTime files of class tapes. This service will be provided for courses whose listening materials are in high demand, especially intro level classes. Talk to Jon if you are interested in this possibility.

Chapters 6 & 7 of Fuentes are now being used for a smoke test with Spanish 127, so they're available online now (eventually they will be password protected, but for now they are freely available to anyone with the URL).

http://www.colby.edu/lrc/vll/spanish

If your browser tries to use RealPlayer to read these files, you will need to edit preferences and change the protocol helper / helper application to read the rtsp protocol with QuickTime player, not RealPlayer. QuickTime is better, trust us! If you need help, contact Jon or the help desk.


THE LRC WEBSITE

The new Language Resource Center website is up and running at

http://www.colby.edu/lrc

The language pages are slowly being redone--about half have been done so far. They should all be complete by fall semester. If you have any comments or suggestions for any of these pages, please let Jon know.

Online resources are being presented in sub-categories of online study resources, online references, online media, class websites & projects, and instructional resources. Check out the instructional resources page for teaching ideas and professional development links.

The In the LRC section will include descriptions of what's available in the lab--from machine configurations to a materials database. The On TV page is a list of TV stations at Colby that broadcast in foreign languages.

A new tech help section is growing with info on things like spell checking in a foreign language, setting up language kits, and typing accents and diacritics.


WHAT'S ONLINE ON TELL

THE SCOLA INSTA-CLASS PAGE

http://www.scola.org/insta-class/

SCOLA offers a service that corresponds with the foreign language satellite broadcasts we receive here at Colby. The SCOLA insta-class service provides bilingual transcripts, vocabulary lists, quizzes, and discussion topics on recent foreign language news broadcasts, as well as RealPlayer files of the actual broadcasts for students to listen to. It's available for all Colby-taught languages.

GIVING A VIRTUAL VOICE TO THE SILENT LANGUAGE OF CULTURE: THE CULTURA PROJECT

by G. Furstenberg and Sabine Levet at MIT, Kathryn English at Université de Paris II, and Katherine Maillet at Institut National des Télécommunications

At the CALICO (Computer-Assisted Language Instructional Consortium) conference last year, there was a great presentation on a collaborative learning project at MIT and universities in Paris where students of each others' languages discussed aspects of culture in often heated debates, using online bulletin boards. The presenters have published in the most recent edition of Language Learning and Technology, an online journal at the following URL:

http://llt.msu.edu/vol5num1/furstenberg/default.html


NEW IN THE LRC

Recently there have been a few changes in the LRC layout. If you haven't been for a while, stop by and have a look.


MAC TECH TIPS

Need a screen shot? Hit shift+apple+3 and listen for the snapshot sound. Then look in your hard drive for 'picture 1'. If you use shift+apple+4, you can then use your mouse to select the area you would like to copy.

When you open a folder, holding down the option key will close the window behind it (the one it was came from). This saves you the trouble of going back and closing all those windows to clean up.

If your frequently-used storage folders are buried deep in your hard drive, make desktop aliases to them to save time when working. Click once on the folder and then apple+M. Drag this alias to your desktop. Later, when you're opening or saving a document, choose the desktop button on the dialogue window. Scroll to find your alias and use it as a shortcut to that storage folder. Two clicks instead of many.

Worried about viruses? Log on to the general server every few days so that your Sophos Virus software can automatically update itself with the latest virus-detectors.


LRC TECHNOLOGY OPEN HOUSE

We are considering offering LRC Technology Open House sessions with wine & cheese for interested faculty members. Depending on interest and topic, these open houses would be offered in workshop, presentation, or simple discussion format. They would be offered on Friday afternoons starting after Spring Break. Interested? Let Jon any of the LRC committee know.

Possible Open House topics:


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March 2001