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Anthony Schmidt is an English language instructor at the University of Tennessee's English Language Institute (ELI). Before coming to the ELI, he taught in Korea and Japan. He holds a master’s degree in language education/TESOL from Indiana University. He has interests in language acquisition, evidence-based language pedagogy, and technology. He writes about these topics and more at and



2nd Annual Online Conference

DAY 1 - October 5, 2017

Laura Patsko (Opening remarks), Paul Miller
VEO and VEO Europa: enhanced interactional insight for learning, shared across global networks

Daniela Martino
Technology-aided activities in the teaching and learning of foreign sounds

Fabiana E. Mallon
The power of digital badges: impact on the motivation of primary students of EFL

Clare Maas
Using multimodal learner-driven feedback to provide sustainable feedback on L2 writing

Joan Palmiter Bajorek
Speech technology in language apps: the unrealised potential of Rosetta Stone, Duolingo, Babbel and Mango Languages



DAY 2 - October 6, 2017

Geoff Stead
But does it do any good? Understanding the impact of Quiz your English

James Pengellay
Speaking of ICT: Does IT enhance the language learning environment?

Mark Oliver
Increasing learner noticing of errors and feedback through Text Chat

Graham Stanley
Remote language teaching

Liliana Simon
Social presence in VLE interaction

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Ipronounce: Understanding Pronunciation Apps



IPronounce: Understanding Pronunciation Apps

Dr. DJ Kaiser
8th June 2017

DJ Kaiser, PhD is an Associate Professor and the Coordinator of Teaching English as a Second Language at Webster University in St. Louis. Missouri.  He has been teaching English and preparing English teachers for twenty years with positions at the University of Illinois, the University of Barcelona, and Washington University in St. Louis and has had research grants in Brazil and Uruguay, including a Fulbright U.S. Scholars Grant.  His specialty area is English pronunciation training with a focus on practical classroom strategies.  Dr. Kaiser has delivered presentations, workshops, and professional development throughout the USA and in China, the United Arab Emirates, Greece, Holland, Spain, Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay.

DJ Kaiser, PhD will provide an overview of mobile apps (iOS) for English pronunciation with a focus on “app affordances” (Beach & O’Brien, 2015).  Based on a review of dozens of iPhone apps for learning English pronunciation, Dr. Kaiser will discuss various features of apps, in addition to their potential uses and many weaknesses.  These features will include the incorporation of games, use of the front-facing camera, and integration of voice recording.  Special attention will be given to the role of corrective feedback in some of these apps through Automated Speech Recognition.  The difference between apps that address segmentals and suprasegmentals will also be covered.  The purpose of this presentation is to educate ESL/EFL instructors and English learners on the numerous options and limitations of currently available iPhone apps.  Dr. Kaiser will also discuss how other features of mobile devices may be integrated into pronunciation training without the need of purchasing apps.

OLLReN -ELTSIG Online Conference on Research Into Using Technology for Language Learning

Report on OLLReN/LTSIG online conference

What’s really happening in online language learning?

Around 230 academics and practitioners logged into the first online conference organised by the Online Language Learning Research Network (OLLReN), a partnership initiative from Cambridge University Press and Laureate International Universities, with support from IATEFL’s Learning Technologies SIG.  Twelve presentations were given by researchers who have been investigating the use of online technology for language learning.  It was an impressive global collaboration, with researchers from New Zealand, China, Japan, Kazakhstan, the UK, the USA and Uruguay. 

We learned from Laura Patsko and Chris Johnson about spoken interaction in synchronous online classes and what impacted on that interaction.   Joseline Castanos gave an in-depth analysis of factors affecting completion rates on online courses.  Paula Charbonneau-Gowdy focused on the online learning experience from the learner’s point of view, and what supports or hinders that. Nicky Hockly gave an overview of research in this area before giving a more detailed examination of different structures of online language course – from a formal course to a MOOC.  Silvia Laborde analysed her experience of blended language courses in Uruguay to identify five key pillars in effective blended learning.

On the second day, Bill Zhi Quan gave a detailed look at how mobile learning needs to be treated differently from other e-learning. Brett Milliner gave an insightful report on his experiments in Japan with extensive reading on mobile devices.  Mark Feng Teng then examined how different approaches to the flipped classroom impacted on learning.  Phil Montgomery analysed his experiences with Slack for a course on leadership, in English, and found it supported an appropriately collaborative approach to learning.  Nik Peachey’s presentation looked at online courses with live 121 tutoring, and investigated data on what made such courses effective.   And finally Evelina Galaczi gave a presentation on automated assessment from Cambridge English, and how it can be integrated into learning programmes. 

The event was received very well – here some examples of comments from attendees:

  • I love the fact that there are so many participants from all over the world. The content is super-interesting.
  • Engaging presentation, a lot of insight into subject presented, solid ground for reflection
  • Really liked how the participants were very informed about the topic and backed up their opinions with facts. Very interactive, and gave a chance for questions and comments.
  • The topics and the speakers were great. I really loved most of the sessions. Hope this turns into a regular annual learning technologies event.

Watch this space for details of future OLLReN events.

DAY 1 - October 6, 2016

Laura Patsko, Chris Johnson
Look who’s talking: An analysis of spoken interaction in synchronous online classrooms

Joseline Castaños
Understanding Attrition among English as a Foreign Language Teachers in Online Training

Paula Charbonneau-Gowdy
Exploring the experiences of learners in a large scale distance language learning program offered in countries across Latin America

Nicky Hockly
Overview of Research on Online & Blended Language Learning

Silvia Laborde
Five Pillars of Designing and Delivering Hybrid Courses to Adults

DAY 2  - October 7, 2016

Zhi Quan
Distinctive mobile learning: How it is different and how it can make a difference
Apologies - due to technical difficulties, this session was not recorded.

Brett Milliner
One year of extensive reading on smartphones: A report
Apologies - due to technical difficulties, this session was not recorded.

Mark Feng Teng
Flipping the Classroom and Chinese Tertiary Level EFL Students' Academic Performance and Satisfaction

Philip Montgomery
Educational Leadership and Language Learning on Slack

Nik Peachey
Learning a language online - How we can ensure quality?

Evelina Galaczi
Automated assessment and integrating learning and technology

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