ER@TU (Extensive Reading at Tohoku University)


I gave this short (30m) presentation about our ER program here at Tohoku University. The presentation is in Japanese.

Tohoku (Sendai) ETJ Expo -Sunday December 2 at Tohoku Bunka Gakuen University

I’ll be presenting at the ETJ Expo in Sendai this weekend, talking about useful online resources to help students study more effectively.

The schedule for the event is here, and the map/directions are here.

My workshop is at 12:30 -hope to see you there!

Annotated list of websites from the “SRS, RSS, LMS: Online Tools to Boost Learner Efficiency” presentations

Hi everyone

A friend from Sendai reminded me that I promised to post the list of websites from my presentation on the blog. Here it is:

Anki is a spaced-repetition program is an amazing listening resource: over 1200 short conversations with transcripts has short videos with interactive subtitles as well as vocab and pronunciation practice

Facebook needs no introduction

Google search settings have some interesting tools, like reading level

Google translate is partially useful

iTunesUniversity great content for advanced students and teachers can now use it to show their classes

Network (Oxford University Press textbook) new series based around social media

OxfordOwl incredible resources including Oxford Reading Tree ebooks with sound

pikifriends a closed social network for junior high schools amazing resource for reading online content a simple (paid) system for learning kanji a very powerful site for learning kanji and vocabulary -freemium but most of it is free

rikaikun for Chrome/rikaichan browser extension Firefox gives popup translations within the browser

skype for video calls phonics and reading practice for children great content for teachers and advanced learners you know this

Hope you find something useful in there.

Building Effective University Language Programs

I’m quite proud of this one. Here’s my talk from the seminar yesterday, entitled “Building Effective Language Instruction”. It’s actually about how to think about university language programs, what they should include and, more importantly, not include.

The outline is below for anyone who doesn’t like videos.

Introduction: the world has changed

Students, employers, and most importantly, language learning techniques have all changed in the new millenium.

What is effective foreign language instruction?

What are the desired outcomes of foreign language instruction? How can they be achieved?
Proficiency, independence

Things students don’t need

Foreign language instruction often includes extraneous material or goals that reduce its effectiveness: technical and social skills

A model program

What would an ideal foreign language program look like atTohokuUniversity? How could it be implemented? Blended learning, serve different types of students, lifetime learning

How to measure results

How should language learning outcomes be measured? How can the effectiveness of a program be judged? Not just standard language tests

26 Nov 2012, 9:34pm



Just a really quick post today to let you know what I’ll be doing for the next couple of weeks.

I have a couple of videos to post (my online resources talk ver1.1 and today’s talk on university English education) that will be going up tomorrow and Wednesday. I’ve also got a couple of articles I have almost finished, and then I’ll be presenting at the Tohoku (Sendai) ETJ Expo this Sunday so will post briefly about that. Looking forward to seeing lots of familiar faces there.

I’ve also got a few reviews that are quite overdue. Basically expect to see some more content over the next few days.

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