Leigh Heylin, Learning Technology Specialist, and Christina Hayes, Language Training Supervisor for Asian and African Languages, attended the annual CALICO conference this year at Michigan State University in lovely East Lansing, Michigan. CALICO, the Computer-Assisted Language Instruction Consortium, is an international organization dedicated to research and development in the use of computer technology in language learning: computer-assisted language learning (CALL).
Members of CALICO come together each year to talk about the latest and greatest technology in language learning topics, tools and pedagogy. This community of practice helps educate language teachers and administrators in using technology to improve student performance, productivity, and satisfaction.
Leigh and Christina had the privilege of attending a very interesting pre-conference workshop addressing pedagogical methods of using technology to address language learners’ challenges in distance learning as well as blended classes. The workshop was designed to help attendees think about their schools’ distance learning programs and how to improve them for their students. There were many presentations from university professors and distance learning administrators that provided insight into their own programs including the challenges and successes they experienced and continue to experience with the evolving technology. It was very helpful to gather more knowledge about exciting new language learning tools and technologies so that DLS can stay in tune with the latest and greatest for students and instructors.
As technology continues to change, language learning using technology will continue to as well. It is important to stay on top of technological pedagogy and tools to better enhance the instructor and student experience in the online environment. DLS strives to provide the best technology for its’ instructors and students through access to up-to-date computers and other hardware, as well as workshops and webinars about technology use in the classroom and valuable language applications. To learn more about DLS’s technology use, please contact Leigh Heylin at firstname.lastname@example.org.