August 21, 2011

Survey of Digital Instructional Materials for Less Commonly Taught Languages

LCTL Materials in the Digital Age

With funding from the U.S. Department of Education, the UCLA Language Materials Project (LMP) has launched a survey of digital instructional materials for Less Commonly Taught Languages.

Do you have a favorite website or DVD for audios, videos, interactive lessons, or an online dictionary? Do you use any language apps or RSS feeds? Have you created your own digital materials? Tell the LMP about them.

The Survey covers any curricular material created by a language teacher or pedagogical team that is available for purchase, subscription, or free use through an institutional website with open access. The material can be of any scope, from a video clip or app to a complete course.

Survey results will be published in pedagogical and policy journals, and disseminated through the national Language Resource Centers.

Here are some examples of the kinds of materials the surveyors are eager to hear about.

Arabic Webcasts. National Capitol Language Resource Center.
On-line authentic news in simplified Arabic with pre-listening background information, vocabulary support, and post-listening activities. Interactive multiple-choice or blank-filling exercises. Audios can be heard online, or downloaded to an iPod through RSS feed. (Also Russian Webcasts.)

Hindi - A Trip to the Market. Center for Advanced Research on Language Acquisition (CARLA).
On-line digital video with .doc or .pdf downloadable exercises. High intermediate to Advanced level. (Other “shareable material” from Arabic and Azeri to Urdu and Vietnamese.)

Mongolian Intermediate Readings. Center for Languages of the Central Asian Region (CeLCAR).
On-line video & audio files with reading/listening components.

Pashto Writing Tutorial. Center for Languages of the Central Asian Region (CeLCAR)
An app for iPad, Playbook, or Android phone, providing interactive exercises and games for learning to write Pashto script.

Turkish Tutor. UCLA Center for Near Eastern Languages.
Complete lessons based on dialogues from a popular television program. Each video clip comes with a glossary and exercises.

Ukrainian. University of Arizona Critical Languages Series.
Interactive lessons on DVD-ROM or by online subscription. (Other complete lessons for Cantonese, Chinese, Kazakh, Korean, and Kurmanji Turkish, etc.)

LangMedia. Five Colleges Center for the Study of World Languages
Videos, with transcripts, of short conversations in a large number of languages. Conversations are grouped thematically. The can be downloaded or viewed on the web.

Please send your digital material suggestions to Barbara Blankenship blankens at humnet dot ucla dot edu, (310-267-4720) or to the feedback page of the LMP website at

The UCLA Language Materials Project (LMP) has been in existence for nearly 20 years. Its web site offers a searchable bibliography of over 7000 teaching materials for 150 languages. See the new K-12 portal with over 100 free lesson plans at

Horn, E. UCLA Language Materials Project Survey. CALICO-L listserv (CALICO-L@LISTSERV.CALICO.ORG, 17 Aug 2011).

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