South East Regional Routes into Languages Foreign Language Spelling Bee Competition

It is with great pleasure that Modern Languages and Linguistics are today (24th April) hosting the South East regional qualifying round of the Routes into Languages Foreign Language Spelling Bee Competition. 3,284 year 7s started the competition in the South East and the last 60 pupils from 20 schools are competing today, with the top 4 in each language proceeding to the national finals in London later this year.

This is part of a national competition for Year 7 pupils to practise and improve their vocabulary, spelling and memory skills in a foreign language (French, German or Spanish). The pupils will have one minute each to translate into the target language randomly selected words from the 150 that they have learnt up to this stage and spell them out in the target language.

The Routes into Languages Foreign Language Spelling Bee is one of many initiatives looking to buck the trend in the decline in modern language learning and which promote learning foreign languages to school pupils.

You can follow the event on Twitter accounts from 1pm today on @ModernLangs, @unisouthampton and @UoSmedia.

To see previous Spelling Bee competitions in action, please see the Routes into Languages NW Foreign Language Spelling Bee Competition 2014 (which was hosted by Manchester Metropolitan University).

The 2019 eLearning Symposium – call for papers extended!

eLearning Symposium 2019
The Call for Papers for the 2019 eLearning Symposium has been extended! The new deadline will be 31st October 2018, with presenters to be notified of acceptance by 15th November.

For more information about this event, which will run on Friday 25th January 2019, please see the eLearning Symposium website and the eLearning Symposium Twitter account.

Student Life: An internship with the MA in ELT: Online

Back in June, I gladly waved goodbye to Avenue campus, having spent the last few months hunkered down in its corridors hunched over my laptop, exasperated in my efforts not to write 8,000 words of waffle in lieu of a dissertation. Yet, I found myself not a month later returning to campus to start a 3-month internship with the online MA programme in English Language Teaching.

For many students of English and French progressing into teaching is the natural next step, nourished by working abroad with the British Council in their third year or taking part in language outreach programmes with local schools. However, as someone who had decidedly avoided anything to do with linguistics or teaching for fear of classrooms full of screaming, snotty-nosed children (not that many of my classes at university were much different), I was surprised to find myself quickly hooked by the programme and the work at hand.Online MA in ELT ident

I think it is fair to say that the position was somewhat undersold, with the task at hand advertised chiefly as content migration. Previously hosted on Moodle, myself and another intern were responsible for transporting the course to Blackboard. Thankfully, this turned out to be a smaller portion of the work than I’d imagined and the summer was not spent mindlessly clicking copy and paste.

The move to Blackboard presented the opportunity to refresh the course a bit, and our goal was to create a welcoming environment and try to create a sense of community and identity for the course through its online learning environment. Students and tutors of the course are based across the globe, therefore it was important to create a (virtual) space that linked them to each other and made them feel connected to the university itself too. To this end, we’ve spent time a lot of time editing videos and graphics for the course, creating personal and study support materials for the students, and exploring and testing various sites and computer programs for educational interaction.

The internship also afforded the opportunity to reflect on my own language learning at university. Skimming through the course checking for broken links and other glitches I had numerous lightbulb moments where the theories and concepts explored in the course content shed light on my experiences in French classes over the last 4 years.

Overall, the experience has been engaging and massively educational. I’ve learned a lot about virtual learning environments, teaching and education, and language acquisition, which has ignited a keen interest in an area I had previously overlooked.

Book your place on our forthcoming Open Days!

Avenue CampusThere are still spaces for our open days coming up in just over a week on Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th September! You can book your place using this booking form.

You can follow our Twitter account @ModernLangs and take a look at our departmental website. You can also follow the day using the hashtag #UoSOpenDay on Twitter.

If you can’t make our open days in person, why not explore Avenue Campus virtually?

The eLearning Symposium is back!

eLearning Symposium 2019

Following a three-year break, the department of Modern Languages and Linguistics at the University of Southampton is delighted to invite you to the new re-branded eLearning symposium, previously successfully run by LLAS, the Centre for Languages, Linguistics and Area Studies.

The Symposium will take place on Friday 25th January 2019 and the theme is “New perspectives: eLearning symposium rebooted. Language learning and technology in new educational landscapes.”

The key dates and further information can be found on the event website and Twitter account. If you have any questions, please email Erin Forward, the Conference Administrator, at elearn19@soton.ac.uk. We look forward to seeing you there!

Southampton University Primary Languages (SUPL)

Southampton University Primary Languages (SUPL)Our collaboration centres on research-informed practice and practice-informed research. Southampton Modern Languages & Linguistics researchers and primary school FL practitioners continue to collaborate to explore FL literacy practices through knowledge sharing and co-construction. Our 2017-18 workshops were funded by an ESRC Impact Acceleration Account award and we’ve just secured additional ESRC funding to continue these through 2018-19.

Visit https://www.soton.ac.uk/supl to find out more about how our partner teachers are engaging in innovative practice and reflecting on their languages classrooms.

Welcome to our open days!

July 2018 open daysWelcome to everyone coming to the University of Southampton open days today! You can find out more about what’s on offer on the official University open day website and by following #UoSOpenDay on Twitter.

You can also find out more from the Open Day Programme of events.

Don’t forget you can also follow our Twitter account @ModernLangs and take a look at our departmental website.

Enjoy your day!