The Learning Object Creator (LOC) Tool is a simple authoring tool for teachers, which has been specifically designed to enable them to create their own e-learning materials without the need for technical support or training. It has been developed by the LLAS Subject Centre, in collaboration with the University of Southampton eLanguages group, according to a tried and tested effective pedagogical design developed over four years.
“The limits of my language means the limits of my world” – Ludwig Wittgenstein
Foreign language skills expand worlds, open doors to new cultures and contribute to social cohesion, mobility and employability. Yet, only half of all Europeans speak a foreign language, while only a quarter speaks a second foreign language (Eurobarometer 386, 2012).
Hello! empowers learners of all ages to better understand the benefits of language learning – and to find and compare language courses of any language taught in Europe – while providing language institutes with an excellent way to centrally present their offers.
In the iTunes and You project, we propose to take existing disparate material, which has been published as open content for research and teaching by humanities staff at the University of Southampton, and work with the university marketing department to repackage it as learning modules in the form of iTunesU course packages. This will be an innovative way to showcase how research and teaching resources can be combined in bite-sized ways which maximises their use for by a global audience of learners.
The Routes into Languages Programme is a Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) and Department for Children, Schools and Families (DCSF) funded initiative to increase and widen participation in language study in higher education. It also aims to support the national role of HE languages as a motor of economic and civic regeneration. The Programme has been developed by the University Council of Modern Languages (UCML), the HE Academy Subject Centre for Languages, Linguistics and Area Studies (LLAS) and CILT, the National Centre for Languages.
LLAS is launching a new initiative. This project aims to discover and share good practice in the delivery and use of feedback by staff and students
LLAS has been funded by JISC to lead The FAVOR (Find a Voice through Open Resources) project. The Project will showcase the excellent and often unrecognised work of part-time, hourly-paid language teachers in HE, and engage them in activities which will enhance the student experience. Tutors will publish teaching resources as open content, and create a suite of new Open Educational Resources designed to assist prospective students in understanding the nature of language study at HE level. Outputs will be disseminated to schools and evaluated by prospective and existing students and will contribute to the national agenda for the promotion and support of language learning.
LLAS has been invited to be a partner in a project to promote the social inclusion of immigrants in EU's societies through by improving their skills in the language of their host country. This project will be exploring a number of models of achieving this from café-style learning groups to tandem learning arrangements. It will also look at virtual modes of support for language learning for this target group. The main aim of the project is to develop a methodology of informal language learning for immigrants by adapting existing informal language learning methodologies (language cafe, TANDEM, cyber language café) to the specific needs of the immigrants. This process will be supported by the introduction of a curriculum for these informal language courses (which will make the whole process more structured and will facilitate the monitoring of the learning outcomes) as well as by the identification of existing and freely available support materials and the development of additional support materials where necessary.
LLAS has been funded by the JISC to lead the OpenLIVES project (Learning Insights from the Voices of Emigres from Spain). This project will digitise resources documenting the migration experiences of Spanish emigrés. Once released as open content, the raw data will be developed as open educational resources for a range of teaching and learning contexts in humanities and social sciences on topics such as migration, life history, employability skills, research skills, language learning. The project will use a tested process model for sharing expertise and teaching ideas to create reusable and innovative teaching resources. A key element of this project will be to involve students at all stages of resource development: using the original data, evaluating the teaching resources and creating/peer-reviewing their own learning resources.
The aim of the SPEAQ project (Sharing Practice in Enhancing and Assuring Quality) is to connect three key quality circles: teacher, student and quality manager in order to share and enhance quality assurance practice in higher education. This project sets out to address a real concern that quality assurance can become ritualised rather than embedded in learning and teaching practice. The outcomes from this project will seed new ideas on how to approach quality assurance within the institution providing evidence of how bringing together stakeholders in the quality process can lead to a wider and more meaningful interpretation of quality assurance. It will collect data on different stakeholder perspectives on quality assurance and undertake small projects at institutional level which will explore ways in which a more shared vision of quality assurance can be fostered at institutional and disciplinary level. SPEAQ will be building on the work of the LanQua project (Language Network for Quality Assurance) which explored issues of quality in the context of the discipline of languages. It developed a toolkit (The LanQua Toolkit www.lanqua.eu) to support frontline (academic/academic support) staff in conceptualising and describing quality from their practice perspective.
This project is funded by the Higher Education Academy (HEA) looking at ways to develop digital literacy within different discipline areas. The project will see students creating Xerte learning objects as assessed materials for their course in Spanish language and content. It will also offer bursaries to all students in Modern Languages, to create materials in preparation for their Year Abroad. Students will learn about the tool, Xerte, and about copyright and metadata implications for the creation of OERs. They will then act as ambassadors and tutors to other staff and students wishing to engage with open practice and Xerte throughout the University of Southampton, via the existing successful Digital Champions (http://www.diglit.soton.ac.uk/champions/) scheme, which sees students acting as roving mentors/tutors for the use of technology in the institution.