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5 questions about live online language learning

egbert34×45.jpgHi all,

 In all press coverage Myngle got so far, all journalists wanted to know from us if language learning can be done in an effective way if your teacher is not present in the same room. Can you learn a language through live online language instruction while your teacher is on the other side of the world?

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Languages have been taught in the same way for ages and ages. You go to a school or a teacher comes to your home to sit with you, always in the same room. Later on cassettes were introduced, which enabled us to listen to lessons from home or in your car. Problem here is that no teacher is involved.

Technology now allows you to learn any language from home, with live classes and real teachers. Why drive to a grey school somewhere to sit in a classroom with other students who have got all kind of different levels, while you can get private lessons from your own couch? My statement: Live online language instruction is at least as effective as ‘ordinary’ language learning or even better. 

Let us take a closer look at this subject with the questions we got from journalists about live online language instruction.

 1) What are the advantages of live online language instruction?

The biggest advantages are that you can do it from your own home and that you determine when you will take the lessons. No school schedules which may not match your agenda. You determine how many lessons you will take and when you will take them. If you want, you can have much more lessons per week than in ordinary courses, but you can also take your time and do it slower. Also, your teacher can tailor his or her lesson material for you to match your needs. No standard school material for all, you special demands can be met in your own lesson material.

 On Myngle students have a wide choice of native teachers and even though it might seem impersonal to get private lessons from a teacher on the other side of the world, a special bond is created very soon between teacher and student. Teachers can increase their reach enormously by making use of the internet and even get the entrepreneurial feeling by completely being in charge them.

 2) For which people is live online language instruction most suitable?

 On Myngle  we learned that anybody can find what he wants on our marketplace. People who go on holidays are taking some lessons to learn the basics, but also professional teachers find students or businesspeople in need of high quality language learning. Even language schools can fill their seasonality dips by using the internet out of season, or offer refreshment courses to past students via the platform.

 On the demand side, in random order, 4 distinct sub segments with different needs benefit from live online language instruction.

 Young professionals who mostly are in time constraint and want quick results find this flexible way of learning very effective.

Language passionates will be able to find people for conversational practice and benefit of the fun and social aspect.

School students can learn quickly in a cost effective way or even earn money by teaching.

Cross-culturals can keep up with their roots and their own language through conversation.

 3) How long does a language lesson take and how many lessons are needed for learning a language?

 One course consists of multiple lessons, and each lesson lasts 60 minutes. Myngle research shows that it is best to take two lessons a weeks. In general, people need about 30 to 40 hours to learn the basics of a language, so in 16 weeks one should be able to get the real results.

 4) How do teacher and student communicate?

Myngle offers a toolkit for synchronous learning, which consists of VoIP (Skype) + own integrated whiteboard, payment systems (PayPal), feedback and a community environment.

Myngle’s feedback system is made up of comments and ratings left by students who were taught by the relevant teacher. These comments and rating  are available in the public Feedback Profile of each member. Extra features will be gradually added to enrich the learning experience, such as podcasts, homework, 3D virtual reality classroom / role plays etc.

 5) Why is live online language learning becoming so popular now?

 The time is ripe for the expansion of the language teaching market from offline to online for a number of different reasons: free of charge high quality VoIP (Skype), high international broadband penetration and whiteboard technology are now available at mass prices. Also, the increasing success of community websites like Facebook and MySpace (or Hyves in the Netherlands) has expanded communication and social interaction beyond the restricted circle of geographical reach. Last, but most important, the internet generation is reaching now spending power and interest in language learning.

Explore posts in the same categories: Language Learning

10 Comments on “5 questions about live online language learning”

  1. Maria Balangue Says:

    Hello there,
    I am Teacher Maria but my user name in Myngle is Klara. A couple of months ago, no less than the founder of Myngle, Ms Marina, contacted me and asked me if if could join Myngle team, an online language teaching. Being a classroom teacher for many years, I was a bit hesitant and apprehensive of the results of it. But when Ms. Marina explained to me how the system flows and goes and when I saw it’s vision-mission, I was convinced and I joined Myngle. I read all about Myngle’s online teaching, viewed its demo lessons and everything that I wanted. I was immensely inspired, so I started creating my own lessons in Filipino/Tagalog, hoping that by online teaching, I could teach and spread my beautiful language. There might be questions about its effectiveness as compared to classroom teaching. But I, having been in a classroom for so long and had an online learning, see both as effective as the other. The activities normally done in an ordinary classroom can also be employed in the online
    teaching as planned. I go for online teaching. Its convenience, aside from the rapport and fun of contacting people from all over the world, is a great experience. I SALUTE MYNGLE FOR THE JOB WELL DONE. I am inviting those who are interested in learning Filipino/Tagalog and English to contact me in Myngle

  2. marina Says:

    Hi Maria,

    this is Marina, thank you for the nice words and enthusiasm about Myngle.
    Yes, our dreams are big and we are very happy to get in contact with teachers like you, who share the same passion.

    I remember in one of our mails’ exchanges some months ago that you were seeing our dreams and vision exactly as we saw it: develop a place where we could connect people that otherwise would have never come in contact, give each of us the possibility to learn from very diverse languages and cultures, beyond geographical borders, and why not… making new friends around the world along the way. Learning to appreciate the differences instead of rejecting them, being more tolerant with each others… If the world becomes small, we are all closer neighbours…

    As you probably already noticed, we are now like a small baby learning its first steps. Still a lot to learn and improve. It is not perfect yet. But we know we will be strong and able to run one day soon. We just have to be patient to learn each step at a time.

    I warmly welcome teachers like you on Myngle, they bring the right spirit to our small but growing community. In fact Myngle is all of you teachers and students who will help us building it.

    Marina

  3. Michael Says:

    Dear Egbert,

    Eh…er…hmm…

    I have been in language teaching for a long time and when I see comments like these: “Live online language instruction is at least as effective as ‘ordinary’ language learning or even better. ”

    Well, hairs raise on the back of my neck. The only way you could possibly make this kind of statement is by first telling us how you define “effective” and then telling us what “proof” you have. What do you think?

  4. egbert Says:

    Hello Michael!

    Lets get the web dictionary Webster to help us in the definition of “effective”: “producing a decided, decisive, or desired effect”. So, effective in this case would mean reaching the student’s goal in their learning objective. Correct?

    Online tutoring can be as convenient or even more convenient then face-to-face, offline education. The price for a lesson can be cheaper, there is no need to commute for the lesson, the variability of programs, quality, and teaching methodologies is huge. With this greater variability and convenience to be found online (at Myngle.com), students are much more likely to find an effective learning program for them.

    Egbert

  5. Michael Says:

    Well, I will give you convenience and price. This isn’t at issue. But here you seem to be equating quantity (more different kinds of teachers available) with effectiveness. Having a greater number of teachers to choose from does not necessarily produce a better quality of class or result in a more effective class. Quantity and diversity does not by itself produce (cause) effectiveness. It probably only assures that you will have a greater degree of choice.

    Effectiveness, in real world terms, DEMANDS some kind of measurement. Without a measuring device one cannot measure effectiveness. And this measuring device has to go beyond one of popularity. Why? Because popularity while reflecting things like price and convenience does not necessarily reflect on things like learning outcomes. I have seen many popular teachers in my day but based on standards testing I can assure you that popularity alone does not produce learning and in some cases can actually hide a poor but popular teacher from scrutiny.

    I am willing to entertain your argument (or any school’s argument of effectiveness) if you can produce statistics related to achievement and of course when you are comparing yourself to other schools, their achievement. Absent this, I find any COMPARATIVE claims of effectiveness to be unsupportable and, how can I say this politely, it indicates that marketing is more in charge of communication than those charged with monitoring education.

  6. Michael Says:

    Thanks for responding by the way Egbert. And, I really enjoyed listening to your interview. Congratulations on reaching the 12,000 mark!

  7. Lamyaa Says:

    Hi every body :
    It is great to find away for learning and communicating with foreigners who can help you and sometimes get benefit of you . for along time I dreamed of such relations , God will we’ll have good use of information and benefits of each other

  8. Английский по скайпу « English Instinct Says:

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  9. Idelfonso Says:

    kamele5se5 It is called NEED.You go to let’s say Japan and stay at a big hotel. You exepct people there to speak English when addressing you. The German guy goes to the very same hotel. He might not exepct the clerk to speak German but surely exepcts him to speak English. I go (yeah, in my dreams) to the same hotel you two are in. I don’t exepct the clerk to speak Spanish so.. I will use English.So, thanks to the idea that English is a world language , we must be able to use it. I am sure most of those English friends you have, if in Germany, will be tempted to go back to English because they know the clerk will have at least some command of the language.Besides, we have way more contact with English than you with any other language. Films, music, newscasts, software, internet. I bet it is harder for any of us (except Indian pals) to get a movie in Hindi than in English.We get more practice than you do. And I am not talking about classroom time or style. It is just that, if I need information, I first look it up in English because it’ll be easier to find it. You’ll do the same but not practicing any foreign language at the same time.

  10. Vencislav Says:

    Lagom I’m swedish and I’ve never been to an esnligh speaking country, but I still understand spoken and written esnligh almost as good as any native speaker. I think it’s because, for once, we learn esnligh from a very early age (I started when I was nine) and we’re also very immersed in the language. almost everything on swedish tv is in esnligh (well not everything but quite a lot) and we hear the language around us from a very early age.I think it’s hard for esnligh speakers because 1) they’re almost exclusively exposed to esnligh and rarely hear any other language and 2) they don’t really have the need to learn a foreign language simply because most foreign people already speak esnligh. I’m glad my first language isn’t esnligh because if it was I probably wouldn’t speak swedish (or any other language for that matter).

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