New Camcorder Demo and Training for Language Teachers

Where: CSL Room: Cobb 210

Date: November 4, 2009

Time: 2:30 p.m.

The Center for the Study of Languages will demo recently purchased Sanyo digital camcorders. These video cameras replace the older Canon and JVC cameras, and like those will be used for pedagogical materials development projects and student class projects.

On Wednesday, November 4, 2009 at 2:30 pm we will demo the cameras and provide training on their use to language teachers. The demo and training session will take place in C 210.

If you plan to create videos for teaching or have your students create videos for class projects, we encourage you to attend. If you plan to attend, please inform Michael Berger via email (

CSL Hours Autumn 2009

Monday – Thursday 8 am to 9 pm

Friday 8 am to 5 pm

Closed November 26th and 27th for Thanksgiving






 PROPOSALS DUE Tuesday, May 27, 2008

 The Spring Quarter deadline for Consortium for Language Teaching and Learning grant proposals is Tuesday, May 27, 2008. Proposals submitted at this time will compete at the campus level. Application forms and guidelines are available at the Center for the Study of Languages, Cobb 211 or can be sent via email as an MS Word attachment upon request (phone 2-9772 for information). Please submit completed proposals as MS Word email attachments to; proposals will be reviewed by the Consortium Committee in early June, 2008. 

 The proposed project must pertain to the teaching or the learning of language. We are urging those of you involved with language teaching to consider in particular a project that might explore new ways of making use of already existing technologies and materials, such as commercially available audio and video tapes or computer programs. We also encourage you to formulate projects that are aimed at developing teaching skills–your own and your colleagues–using the hardware presently residing at the University, in the Center for the Study of Languages, and in the various multimedia-equipped classrooms around campus.

Professional Development Grants for UofC Language Faculty and Graduate Student Instructors

The CSL once again has some funds available to support professional development for faculty or graduate student language instructors who would like to pursue training in language teaching, assessment, and/or technology over the summer. These funds are available from the general CSL budget and especially from the generous support of the Center for International Studies.


At present, we would like to solicit proposals from those of you who would like to take advantage of summer 2008 programs. If you would like to apply, please send a cover letter describing your professional, linguistic, and scholarly interests and how the proposed program fits in with your overall academic plans or career goals to <>. Please provide a description of the program and a proposed budget. Applications should be turned in no later than Tuesday, April 15, 2008. We will try to expedite the review process through the Advisory Council to the CSL and make awards for Summer 2008 by early May.


For those of you looking for sample programs, here are some suggestions:


ACTFL Oral Proficiency Interview training (4-day workshops)


CARLA (Center for Advanced Research on Language Acquisition)


CLEAR (Center for Language Education and Research)


CALPER (Center for Advanced Language Proficiency and Research)



The South Asia Language Resource Center also has a nice selection of links for programs:


Muhammad Eissa (NELC) also recommends the following:




            Professional Development  NCLRC Presentations and Institutes





For Arabic and some other less commonly taught languages:


Mahmoud Al-Batal and Kristin Brustad:  



Margaret Malone, Ph.D. (Center for Applied Linguistics)

Programs offered throughout the summer funded by STARTALK. 



Please let the CSL know if you have any questions. We hope many of you will have ideas for taking advantage of this opportunity for professional development.

Corpus Methods in Linguistics and Language Pedagogy

The CSL is happy to announce that we will host a masterclass in corpus linguistics during UofC’s Spring Break week, Wed-Sun, March 26-30, 2008. Full information and application information may be found at the CMLLP-2008 website at: forms are available for download here. The workshop will cover corpus methods in linguistic research and the preparation of language pedagogical materials and will focus on less commonly taught/studied/spoken languages. 

Welcome back! Autumn Quarter 2007 Begins

Welcome back everyone. We hope you’ll keep up with news at our blog.

CSL Staff

pen-sized scanner for 128 languages

Barbara pointed out an article for this pen-sized scanner that can scan 128 different languages.

United Nations declares 2008 the International Year of Languages

You can read this announcement from the United Nations declaring 2008 the International Year of Languages here.

NCLRC Newsletter

The National Capital Language Resource Center puts out a monthly newsletter.

Podcasts, Blogs, and more

Keep an eye on the development of various podcasts (audio and video), blogs, and more for use in language learning. has a nice listing of some podcasts.

Also open iTunes on your computer and do a search for your languages in Podcasts at the iTunes store as well as new iTunesU offerings.

Resources for language learners

–Greetings from the University of Northern Iowa / Cedar Falls, Iowa (USA)

I have developed a series of websites for language students and their
instructors. I hope that you will share this information with interested persons and add this URL to your website and/or publication(s). Having taught in a private academy, public schools, the Ohio State University as well as a University Laboratory School, I learned to appreciate the many advantages that computers can play in helping to learn a second language. The many websites work well for students on all levels of instruction including elementary and are both educational and fun.

Each site receives hundreds of visits daily from all over the world. Enjoy.



Jim Becker
Webmaster and Professor Emeritus
Past President, Iowa World Language Association

Workshops for language teachers

For those of you looking for workshops for language teachers…

ACTFL Oral Proficiency Interview training (4-day workshops)

CARLA (Center for Advanced Research on Language Acquisition) professional development programs

Workshops at CLEAR

Advanced/Specialty workshops at the Penn State LRC (CALPER)

The National Capital LRC

Recommended by the SALRC:

Ever wonder what a LCTL is?

If you’ve ever wondered what a LCTL (less commonly taught language; pronounced [licktle]), the answer is just about everything except for Spanish, French, German, and Italian. See here for a list of LCLTs.

EthnicTV Network on the internet

I saw a post about this website recently:

The premier Russian TV videos site, available in broadband, is on the Ethnic
TV Network at:

Superb, full-screen videos. Thousands of taped programs available in the
archive. Thsi is a commercial site. Cost: $10 for 20 hours a month, $20 for
50 hours a month, $40 for unlimited viewing.

Edward Tufte Workshop

I attended a workshop by Edward Tufte a few weeks ago and found it quite interesting. There’s lots of information available at his website:


And here’s another tool for learning vocabulary or other brief, factual information: Quizlet.

You can use the tool to make your own vocabulary lists and quiz them in a number of ways.

WordMate (by a UofC alumnus)

Here’s a product for vocabulary acquisition made by a University of Chicago alumnus:

DishNetwork in the CSL

Since June, the CSL has had DishNetwork satellite dishes ready to receive foreign language programming. We tested the system with German, Polish, and Russian television during the summer courses. We’ll be adding more programming in Autumn quarter. If you have an interest in programming we aren’t currently offering, talk to your language teacher, language coordinator, and the CSL staff about adding your languages of interest.

See the DishNetwork international programming pages for more information on channel options.

We’ll be looking into ways to make live, pre-recorded, and on-demand foreign language video available for teachers, courses, and students in and around the CSL this fall.


WordChamp is a useful website for foreign language learners to practice their vocabulary (use lists posted by other users or make your own lists). The vocabulary feature allows you to test and restest pesky vocabulary that just won’t stick in your memory. They also have webreaders that will give you glossed vocabulary for certain languages.

What does the sign at the end of the corridor say?

Gracing the south wall of the main corridor in the CSL is a quotation from King Alfred the Great of England (c. 849-899), commenting in the late 9th century about the lack of translations of Latin texts into the English of his day. He writes: ‘They didn’t know that men would every become so reckless and their learning in such decline, therefore they had purposely forsaken it [the translation of Latin and other texts into Old English] and wanted that here there would be more wisdom in the land, the more languages (ġeðēode NOM pl; ġeðēoda GEN pl) we knew.’ This Old English citation has been incorporated into the design and publications of the center, touching on the role of the study of foreign languages amidst the role of English as a lingua franca on a global level as well as at the level of our daily communicaton in the center, yet at the same time the citation reminds us that English can be impenetrable, even to native speakers. The final line underscores the role of the language center in increasing knowledge and wisdom through the pursuit of studying languages.

Alfred's Quote in manuscript form