This large OIE began as a pilot in 2011 as a result of the two lead tutors chance meeting through an e-learning blog. The concept of a virtual exchange was elaborated and approximately 300 students from each partner institution were brought together through a moodle course, EWC.
Students in both institutions study a foreign language but none are taking specialised foreign language degrees. In France students study sports sciences with English, while the students in England are taking various undergraduate degrees (in, for example, maths, management, history, politics and economics) which include an optional module in French or another foreign language of their choice.
Both educators were interested in exploring whether they could set up a stable exchange network for a large number of students with relatively little staff direction and assessment. Teresa explains: ” Our arrangements were possibly unconventional. We looked to open the student’ s network to include peer support chosen by the individual from native speakers and encouraged awareness of the advantages and disadvantages this can bring. Increasing the choice and making it as easy as possible to find people who share your interests for social as well as academic reasons seems important.”
The objectives included:
- Development of written and oral communication skills
- Development of metacognitive skills (learning to learn)
- Development of a personal learning network (PLN)
- Tutor research into social networks/online learning environments for language learning
This exchange involves future teachers of French who are completing a Masters Degree in Foreign Language Education (” Master français langue étrangère” ) and students in Latvia who are studying a degree in French Studies.
The exchange forms part of ” Le français en première ligne” project which engages student teachers of French in authentic online teaching experiences with students of the French language in other countries. The project,created by Christine Develotte,has been running since 2002 and has connected student teachers from Besançon, Lyon and Grenoble in France with partners in Australia, the USA, Spain, Japan, Brazil, Cyprus and Latvia.
L' échange ici décrit implique des futurs enseignants de français en seconde année de Master de Français Langue Etrangère (FLE) à Grenoble et des étudiants lettons (ou chypriotes) qui étudient le français comme une de leurs matières principales. Il fait partie du projet " Le Français en (première) ligne" qui, depuis 2002 et sur l' initiative de Christine Develotte et François Mangenot, permet à des étudiants de Master FLE (de Besançon, Grenoble, Lyon, etc.) de vivre une expérience authentique d' enseignement en ligne avec pour public des étudiants de français de nombreux pays (Australie, USA, Espagne, Japon, Brésil, Lettonie, Chypre).
This eTandem project was set up between students in the US two months before they left for a mobility program to Padova in Italy and university students in Padova who had signed up for an eTandem project to improve their English.
The project was intended to have students doing activities in pairs, as in traditional eTandem, but also to try to form a group with, for example, forum discussions. A Moodle site was set up to provide prompts for pair discussion but also a group dialogue space and also a container to gather reflective diaries and student feedback.
LanguageTwin is an educational video chat platform that allows foreign language students to converse one-on-one with native speakers who are also learning a foreign language, while providing educators a framework for structuring conversations and assessing the performance and progress of their students.
The objectives of the Soliya Connect Program telecollaboration project are for participants to develop a deeper understanding of the perspectives of others around the world on important socio-political issues, and also to develop critical thinking, intercultural communication and media literacy skills. Each iteration of the project connects over 200 students from over 30 different universities in the US, Europe and the predominantly Arab and/or Muslim worlds, who are placed into small groups of 8-10 students and guided through a 9-week, English language dialogue program by pairs of trained facilitators.
The project was not developed for learning English, but rather for students of Political Science, Conflict Resolution, Media Studies in 2003. As it has expanded, groups of students have participated as part of their English language courses. This is a form of ' outsourced' telecollaboration project whereby universities can enrol students for the Connect Program which is managed by the NGO Soliya.
This exchange involved future Primary-School teachers at the University of León, Spain (B1 level in English) working with students of Spanish in Missouri, USA (B1 level of Spanish). The exchange was located on a NING platform.
What is a NING? Ning is an online platform for people and organizations to create custom social networks. Ning offers users the ability to create a community website with a customized appearance and feel, feature sets such as photos, videos, forums and blogs. Your NING can be password protected so, in this sense, it can be a perfect ' closed environment' for your online exchanges.
The exchange lasted for one term and it has been repeated with different groups of students at the two universities over the past three years.