Using MOOC Videos and Subtitles to Learn Languages

Although there don’t seem to be any MOOCs on the major provider platforms for learning languages, Coursera does offer courses in Chinese, French, Spanish, German, Arabic and Italian that you can use to help you learn the language. Most, if not all of them, provide subtitles for the videos so you can watch and read […]

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European Day of Languages 2013

Just a reminder – the European day of Languages / Journée européenne des langues is tomorrow, September 26! From the official website: Throughout Europe, 800 million Europeans represented in the Council of Europe’s 47 member states are encouraged to learn more languages, at any age, in and out of school. Being convinced that linguistic diversity […]

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The Great Language Game: How many languages can you identify?

Here’s a fun new game to get addicted to: The Great Language Game. Data scientist Lars Yencken has created a neat game where you listen to an audio clip and choose which language it is. All of the clips are from Australia’s SBS (which you should listen to anyway since so many languages are available). […]

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Dutch Heritage in the US: Holland, Michigan

I am currently in the US visiting family and I stopped by Holland, Michigan, since I hadn’t been there in 20 years. It was founded by Dutch settlers in the mid 19th century and a large majority of Dutch Americans still live in Michigan. There is also a city called Zeeland nearby. Holland is often ranked […]

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Trilingual English-Spanish-French Books for Children

I am constantly looking for trilingual (English-Spanish-French) books for my young niece and nephew. So far I have found two series on Amazon.com, Little Pim (which has 4 books of numbers, colors, feelings and animals) and I love to sleep/eat. Do you know of other trilingual books? Trilingual books for children I love to sleep […]

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How Adaptation to Culture Affects Motivation in Language Learning

An article on sociolinguistic competence (Dewaele, 2007) introduced me to research on language learners’ ideological beliefs and conflicts with the target culture that can hinder language acquisition. Dewaele provides two examples from Kinginger (2004) and Kinginger & Farrell’s (2005) research on Americans studying abroad in France which illustrate the importance of intercultural understanding and adaptation to […]

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Basic Phrases with Pronunciation: French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, German, and Swedish Available

If you’d like to study basic phrases for French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, German, or Swedish, I’ve created new pages with the list of phrases and mp3s for each phrase (instead of one mp3 for all the phrases together). Now you can listen to each phrase individually before trying out the audio flashcards to test yourself. […]

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So Much for the Asian Century: Loss of Language Programs at Australian Universities

The University of Canberra and Curtin University both recently announced that they would be cutting their language programs. At Canberra, Japanese, Mandarin and Spanish will disappear while at Curtin, Japanese, Mandarin and a major in Asian Studies may be abandoned. These cuts are very unfortunate since it leaves these universities with no language classes or […]

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iTunes U Materials and MOOCs Available in Languages Other than English

I recently noticed that iTunes U now lets you browse the courses by language. Finally! Previously you had to go to the list of universities and look for a certain institution, which may or may not have had any real content. Now you can simply select Chinese, Spanish, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Catalan, Portuguese, Korean […]

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Readlang + Podclub = My Latest Language Learning Obsession

Readlang by Steve Ridout is a new site (still in beta) which helps you learn foreign languages by reading and translating words you don’t know. You simply import text from any website, click on words you don’t know in order to translate them into another language, and save these words so you can review them […]

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Why is Jennie no longer in France?

I created this blog in September 2006 when I moved to France from Michigan to teach English. Many of the earlier posts are about my personal life in France, dealing with culture shock, traveling in Europe and becoming fluent in French. In July 2011, I relocated to Australia to start my PhD in Applied Linguistics. Although I am no longer living in France, my research is on foreign language pedagogy and I teach French at a university so these themes appear most often on the blog. I also continue to post about traveling and being an American abroad.

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