The Virtual Language Learning Classroom: a "resource-assisted learning" model for online learning

English study material
e.g. Vocabulary Exercises
  Reading, Grammar
     
Active Dictionary pages
Words in the text
dynamically linked to dictionary
     
   

Online

Dictionary

   
     
Concordancing
data-driven learning
      Multimedia
Audio streaming, Text-to-Speech sound files

Learning strategies compared!

What is "resource-assisted learning"?
"Resource-assisted learning" is the model for online learning which is the guiding principle of the VLC approach, namely the integration of vocabulary, dictionary, concordancing and multimedia in a unified way. It results from the convergence of the various traditions in CALL and is the key design feature of the VLC. The original inspiration for the VLC is the experience of using electronic dictionaries in the classroom together with various CALL and writing activities. The VLC web server is thus designed to be an accessible medium for the integration of all these approaches and aims to bring these disparate traditions to as wide and diverse an audience as possible.

The "resource-assisted learning" model describes this strategy of integrated language learning with online dictionary which underpins the whole concept of the Virtual Language Centre. This is at the heart of the VLC approach, and the electronic dictionary is one of the principle tools to help the language learner to develop the vocabulary base and skills for greater mastery of the target language. For at the core of the language learning process is the basic problem of vocabulary building, and in the final analysis the pace at which the student learns the language is limited to how fast the vocabulary can be absorbed. When one considers the labour and time invested in searching dictionaries to find new words, if this process can be aided or simplified in any way, then this must pay dividends. This is precisely the rationale behind the notion of resourece-assisted learning, which by integrating the lexicon into a broad range of language learning activities such as reading, gap filling, synonym practice exercises and so on, can help to eliminate or reduce much of the time and effort otherwise spent in lexical research.
The goal of resourece-assisted learning is to speed up this process of vocabulary development and at the same time take some of the drudgery out of the process by making it as easy as possible for the learner to acquire new language.

VLC Front Page | Study Guide

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