Worskhop 1 - Action research in the CALL classroom
Organiser: Simon Wilkins, Tokai University Japan
The workshop begins with a discussion aimed at explaining the main differences between "traditional" research and action research. The discussion will then lead to the presentation of a framework for carrying out action research projects in CALL classrooms. An example of a research project in a CALL classroom will be presented and the group will then brainstorm their own ideas for action research projects. Participants will be asked to think critically about their own CALL classrooms, what “burning questions” or problems they can identify and what actions can be taken that will finally lead to publishable and presentable action research projects.
Workshop 2 - Developing students’ 21st century skills through online intercultural dialogue facilitation
THIS WORKSHOP IS NOW FULL - NO MORE PARTICIPANTS CAN BE ACCEPTED
Organisers: Casper van der Heijden (Sharing Perspectives) Katja Riikonen (Soliya)
In the current interdependent and globalized world cooperation across cultural and national divides is becoming increasingly necessary. At the same time, graduates will have to secure employment in a culturally diverse and international environment. In this light it is desired that graduates have an international and cross-cultural exchange experience as part of their education, stimulating them to develop 21st century skills such as critical thinking, self-awareness and cross-cultural communication and collaboration skills. A scalable and durable way to offer this exchange experience to students is technology-enabled exchanges or virtual exchange, that is telecollaboration projects in which synchronous (live and direct) discussions are guided by trained facilitators. This workshop focuses on the goals, skills and tools a facilitator uses to facilitate constructive and meaningful discussions between students in geographically distant locations with diverse cultural and national backgrounds. The goal of a facilitator working in a dialogue program is to empower and activate participants to take ownership over the discussion. At the same time, the facilitator needs to ensure a sense of safety and trust in the group, to the extent that group members dare to step out of their comfort zone, talk about sensitive and personal themes in which they are able to confront and challenge one another. The workshop will introduce participants to some of the tools and skills that support the facilitator in that objective. Some basic facilitation tools such as asking good questions, active listening and making summaries will be addressed. Additionally, the importance and need of observing and managing key dialogue components such as group processes, emotions, power and group dynamics will be explored and actively practiced. When these tools and skills are applied by the facilitator they enable good discussions among the participants. Good discussions are characterized by going beyond what people think and instead focus on why they think the way they do. Thereby, assumptions and implications are often challenged and explained. Participants are thus continuously challenging each other and are being challenged themselves. This leads them to develop important 21st century skills such as critical thinking and self-reflection. This workshop will be of interest to language educators involved in telecollaboration projects who are interested in exploring facilitated dialogue as a model of telecollaboration. The workshop will first present some telecollaboration projects which use this dialogue model and could – for participants using a foreign language – be categorized as innovative content and language integrated learning projects. The rationale behind this dialogue model and the pedagogical advantages will be discussed. Participants will then be introduced to some of the tools and skills required of facilitators through practical activities and discussions.
Workshop 3 - Virtual World SIG Workshop: ‘Of other spaces’, language learning in 3D Virtual Environments, a critical appraisal
Organisers: Gene Dalton, Abdulmenaf Gul, Tugba Kamali Arslantas, Susanna Nocchi, Luisa Panichi
This half-day workshop has a double-focus: to provide participants with an overview of language learning in 3D virtual environments (3D VEs) and to lead a discussion on theoretical frameworks and/or research methods used for studies on the educational potential of virtual worlds. The initial part of the workshop will be devoted to the illustration of two 3D virtual worlds (Open Wonderland and OpenSim) which are emerging as virtual environments for language teaching and learning with practitioners sharing their experience and educational practices. Finally, the discussion will focus more specifically on the research methodology adopted by colleagues researching in the field and on the direction virtual world language teaching and research is going. Participants will be encouraged to share and compare their own experiences of teaching and researching in virtual worlds. The workshop consists of 2 parts: In the first part a presenter will give an introduction to the use of Open Wonderland (OWL), an open source Java-based toolkit for developing 3D virtual environments, with a specific emphasis on collaboration and education. The illustration of Open Wonderland will be followed by a presentation of some of the language learning activities and research that are taking place on OpenSim. Participants will be encouraged in this part to share their own experiences of virtual world education. In the second part of the workshop we will focus on virtual world educational research in CALL. Areas the workshop intends to address include research approaches, methods and methodologies, data collection and data analysis. Participants will be encouraged in this part to share their own experiences of virtual world research in CALL.
What participants can expect by the end of the workshop:
• To have an overview of some of the most recent developments in language teaching in virtual worlds;
• To have an overview of research related issues and practical approaches for CALL research in virtual world platforms;
• To have met fellow Eurocall virtual world practitioners and researchers
Workshop 4 - Twitter to network, share and develop an academic community
Organisers: Fernando Rosell-Aguilar, Open University
This session aims at enabling attenders to understand how to enhance their digital scholarship beyond academia by engaging with a global audience through Twitter. The session will be in two parts: the first part will cover the reasons why it can be beneficial for an educator to be on Twitter, even if initially there may be some reluctance or feeling that one has little to contribute or learn from it. We will provide examples of different levels of engagement and benefits. Both prospective and current Twitter users may find it of use. The second part will be hands-on, aimed to those new to Twitter, and we will help you set up an account and get to grips with the basics as well as concepts such as following, hashtags, trending topics, and netiquette.
Some people may wish to attend only the first half if they are experienced Twitter users. Even if you think Twitter is not for you, we would encourage you to attend so you can familiarise yourself with a tool that academics and students alike are using.
Please bring your smartphone / tablet if you have one (or a laptop if you don’t) to the session.