Thursday, July 31, 2008

Learn French Courses In The 21st Century.

New technologies and a better knowledge of our language learning process have transformed the way we learn today. The internet and other media are bringing all these advances together. There is no more just one way to learn but a multitude of complementary ways. Forget the classbooks amd the boring teachers. Everyone now has so many choices to immerse themselves into a new language and speed up their learning curve.

Audio tapes and CDs have for some time started to replace text books and allowed students to learn from home or during their commute to work. These methods already seem old but audio will of course always be the central part of any learning method. It is just now downloadable to many other media like MP3 players , ipods and other digital devices.

Podcasts are the clear extension of the more traditinal audio devices. The advantage of podcasts is that they give you a more present experience. Numerous podcasts are available in foreign languages where the news and events of the country are commented and translated, giving you a way to practice, learn new words and get a tase of the culture. These are great to complement more thorough methods. They mix learning the language and getting immersed in the culture just like if you were visiting the country.

Video is already part of numerous learn French courses that you can play on your computer. Now with the internet and the booming of free broadcating sites, one can visit his favorite internet video site and download free lessons or TV shows from foreign countries. Videos are very powerful as they give a lot of context to the new words. They aslo give direct access to the culture, the accents and pronunciation of real everyday people.

A better understanding of our brain and how it absorbs knowledge has also transformed the way we learn. Most methods are moving away from plain repetition of words and sentenses to a more interactive process. Studies have shown that children for example learn languages in a more intuitive way. More and more the industry is learning from this process. The new methods tend to force our brain to guess the right answers instead of the traditional repeat after me approach.

Studies of our memory process have transformed our language learning process into a science. Some methods time the frequency at which new words are reintroduced to make sure that the retention of new vocabulary will last. These new advances have reduced the time necessary to study to make significant lasting progress.

The most advanced technology which is now introduced is speech recognition software. How does it work? When you interact with your online teacher or simply repeat a sentense into a microphone the software can correct your pronunciation. More exactly it visually shows you on a 3-D graph if you are close or if you need to correct your pronunciation. It is like having your own tutor sitting next to you, correcting you until you get it right.

And of course, internet communication technologies make it possible to talk to a French teacher in France for free. This makes it possible for teachers to reach students from all over the world and give online classes. This is good news for the language teachers in the world as they will not be obsolete but will be able to expand their reach in new profitable ways.

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