Virtual Exchange (VE) has many benefits for foreign language teachers and their students but it is still not easily accessible to the mainstream. Students in English as a foreign language classrooms often have few opportunities to physically interact with other users of English. VE gives them virtualmobility, enabling them to participate in a global community. In this presentation the author introduces a large scale VE which includes over 1500 students from 5 countries in a VE via a Moodle platform. Students interact online in English as a lingua franca. Exchanges are carried out over 8 week periods. Outcomes from the project, sponsored by the Japanese Ministry of Education, will be outlined using data gained from questionnaires, text analysis and student feedback. Details of how this method of VE could bring it into mainstream, ensuring VE can become a part of any English communication class throughout the world, if the teacher so wishes, will be outlined in addition to an outline of problems that can eventuate and ideas for incorporating the VE into classroom practice. Those attending will also be able to participate in a quick workshop so that if they want to join the exchange from April 2017, they will be able to.
Eric Hagley teachers EFL at Muroran Institute of Technology in the north of Japan. He created the large scale virtual exchange being presented here and has had his students doing VE for the past 12 years. He is the Chair of the Asia Pacific Virtual Exchange Association (APVEA) and in this position is trying to ensure that VE can become mainstream in language classes everywhere. He is also head of the Quiz Quality Assurance Project for MoodleReader (mReader).
Speaker: Eric Hagley, Muroran Institute of Technology
Date and Time: Saturday, 25 February 2017 - 10:00am - 12:00pm
Location: Nagasaki International University, 2825-7 Huis Ten Bosch Machi, Sasebo, 859-3243
Fee for JALT members: Free
Fee for one-day members: ¥1000
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