Thursday, March 12, 2015

CLEAR at MSU by Hongying Xu

CLEAR at MSU is a language resource center through Michigan State University that offers various free resources, materials, and products. I use two products offered through CLEAR at MSU. First, I use Conversations which is a web-based program that allows teachers to record video prompts or questions and ask students to record video responses. The teacher can set-up the system to allow students to practice their recordings or to spontaneously create their recorded response. Second, I have used Video Dropbox which is a virtual dropbox for video files which can be added to any webpage including D2L.

These tools work well when teaching Chinese because I am able to listen to their responses as well as watch a student and see a student's mouth when speaking the language, possibly alerting me to an issue and give more accurate feedback. The integration of CLEAR at MSU into my classes has allowed me to ensure that all students are able to practice their language skills since in class it is not possible for all students to orally response to all prompts. With CLEAR at MSU, each student has the opportunity to answer the question or do the language practice activity. In addition, students can work in groups to develop and record role plays in Chinese. Students report being more comfortable creating and recording role plays in CLEAR at MSU versus performing in a live class without the ability to practice. I will often pull up the recorded videos in a face-to-face class to use for examples and students report no issues with this playback.

The CLEAR at MSU website has helpful information and tutorials about the various resources available. More information about the resources available through CLEAR at MSU can be found here:

Submitted by Hongying Xu, Modern Languages