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E-Learning Novelties towards the Goal of a Universal Acquisition of Foreign and Second Languages
Start date: Sep 1, 2015, End date: Aug 31, 2018 PROJECT  FINISHED 

E-LENGUA is a consortium among 6 European universities and a partner country higher education institution, all of them with extensive experience in second and foreign languages training. The project’s main goal is to update curricular design for language teaching using ICT in Europe in a synergic way. Specifically, it is intended to seek solutions to previously identified problems and develop measurable actions and products in the use of ICT in the teaching of foreign languages for users of different ages, from diverse social origins: users may pertain to the academic world, the world of work, or they may represent the social facet of life-long education. The Participating institutions (one university for each of the languages dealt with in the project) are: - University of Salamanca (Spanish, 51 million of native speakers in EU): co-ordinating institution. - University of Bologna (Italian, 60 million of native speakers in EU) - University of Dublin (English, 67 million of native speakers in EU) - University of Coimbra (Portuguese, 11 million of native speakers in EU) - University of Heidelberg (German, 100 million of native speakers in EU) - University of Poitiers (French, 80 million of native speakers in EU) - Non-EU partner HEI: Cairo University (Arabic, 5 million of native speakers in EU) Some of the most widely spoken languages of Western Europe have many more speakers outside the European continent than within it. This is the case with Spanish, the second most widely spoken language in the world, with 387 million speakers; English, the third most spoken language in the world with 365 million native speakers; Arabic, the fifth most spoken language in the world with 280 million native speakers and an international community of ever-growing economic, political and cultural importance; and Portuguese, the sixth most spoken language in the world with 204 million speakers. Duration: 3 years. GENERAL OBJECTIVES: 1. To contribute to the reinforcement of cooperation among European institutions of higher education through the exchange of best practices in order to build an open-access repository available to all the SFL teaching community with a view to achieving the integration of digital competencies in the curricular design of foreign language teaching. 2. To draw up teaching proposals that respond to the educational needs of the European context -intercultural and multilingual- and that present possible solutions to the challenges posed by the applications of ICT in the teaching of foreign languages. 3. To implement the development of cross-sectional knowledge, skills and attitudes related to the digital competencies integrated into foreign language-learning in Europe, paying special attention to people with special needs from the different countries included in the project (e.g. persons who are blind or deaf). The challenges that stand out as the most relevant in the educational application of ICT to the teaching of foreign languages are: 1. To foster massive motivation and universal accessibility in regard to foreign language (FL) learning in the EU. 2. To improve collaboration and interaction in the teaching of a FL, in both oral and written skills. 3. To promote meaningful learning of a FL through the integration of the affective component (motivation, attitude, etc.). 4. To favour autonomous and accessible learning at any time and in any place. 5. To integrate intercultural communication in the teaching of a FL. 6. To foster the effective use of computer-mediated synchronic and asynchronic communication systems (CMC) in FL teaching to facilitate learning. 7. To improve online language assessment. The universities in the consortium, leaders in the teaching of the native language of their corresponding countries, will become a reference in research applying ICT to the teaching of languages, by seeking solutions to the most problematic aspects of using technological resources as a teaching instrument. The expected outcomes of the project will be: an open-access repository of best practices in language teaching innovation, seven tangible and measurable products carried out by the seven partner universities that can help to meet the challenges mentioned before, technical and academic training in the use of new technologies applied to language teaching, publications in specialised journals of material with high scientific impact and knowledge transfer.
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