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Jost Gippert: Our Featured Linguist!

"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more



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What is English? And Why Should We Care?

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To find some answers Tim Machan explores the language's present and past, and looks ahead to its futures among the one and a half billion people who speak it. His search is fascinating and important, for definitions of English have influenced education and law in many countries and helped shape the identities of those who live in them.


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Medical Writing in Early Modern English

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This volume provides a new perspective on the evolution of the special language of medicine, based on the electronic corpus of Early Modern English Medical Texts, containing over two million words of medical writing from 1500 to 1700.


Academic Paper


Title: Computer-Mediated Negotiation Across Borders: German-American collaboration in language teacher education
Author: Carolin Fuchs
Email: click here to access email
Homepage: http://www.tc.columbia.edu/faculty/index.htm?facid=cf2307
Institution: Teachers College, Columbia University
Linguistic Field: Applied Linguistics
Abstract: The overall goal of this study was to gain insight into the complex nature of computer-mediated communication (CMC)-based negotiation and learning by analyzing a collaborative project among teacher educators and preservice teachers in the US and in Germany.

The collaboration aimed at providing preservice teachers with the opportunity to explore the potential of integrating computer technology into their own English or Foreign Language Teaching by collaborating with their counterparts as well as to develop professional literacy. Six groups of pre-service teachers collaborated via the email and chat functions of the FirstClass® computer conferencing software with their transatlantic partner groups in designing a joint website for CMC-based language teaching. The following research questions were addressed:

1.Which key principles of negotiation can be identified in a CMC-based learning environment?
2.What kind of challenges do preservice teachers encounter when collaborating over a distance? What impact do these challenges have on the key principles of negotiation?
3.What kind of pedagogical value do CMC-based projects have in teacher education?
4.What are the implications with regard to teacher and learner training strategies?

The theoretical framework of this dissertation draws on the following three major concepts:

1.The principles of cooperative learning (based on socio-cultural theory, pedagogical theories from educational research, and social psychological and sociological research);
2.Computer technologies in language learning (based on technology and communications theory);
3.The notion of model learning (based on pedagogical theories from educational research).

Data collection instruments were triangulated and included email and chat transcripts, logs, pre-course/post-course questionnaires, learning process statements, voices from the classroom, post-course self-assessments and small-group interviews. A Grounded Theory approach was used to identify categories such as linguistic issues and missed negotiation opportunities. Based on the characteristics displayed by one group which successfully negotiated and cooperated with their transatlantic partner group, suggestions are made with regard to enhancing CMC-based learning environments. Lastly, recommendations for further research are outlined.
Type: Individual Paper
Status: Completed
Venue: Frankfurt: Peter Lang Europäischer Verlag der Wissenschaften.
Publication Info: ISBN-10: 3631547749


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