Category Archives: Language Acquisition

Back to the ’60s: USA government is ready to pay for language learning again

After Soviet Union stunned the world with the launch of the Sputnik in 1957, USA allocated a lot of money to education, including foreign languages study. That had kick started a lot of research and produced some new methods of language learning.

And now we are repeating that past again.

As a delayed response to September 11, USA government is planning to pump money into languages again. The languages this time are Arabic, Chinese, Russian, Persian, Hindi, and languages of Central Asia. And with progress in technology, maybe some new and exciting methods of language teaching will be developed. I know of at least one already for Arabic.

Full details is available in the briefing on this National Security Language Initiative.

On a negative note, differently from the 1958 act, only language are being spent money on now, not other sciences, so the flow-on effects will be much smaller.

Alex.

Update: Definitely not an improvement for any other science areas. (via LibrarianInBlack)

Great WikiBook on Computer Assisted Language Learning

I have collected many links to help me learn French with computers. But the resource I have just discovered is really the best.

It is a WikiBook on Autonomous Technology-Assisted Language Learning (ATALL) written by Gary Cziko. It has resources organised by work type and acquisition method. There are language neutral as well as language specific links. And – as with all WikiBooks – anybody can add relevant material.
Highly recommended!

Alex.