Carnegie Mellon University

Eberly Center

Teaching Excellence & Educational Innovation

Technology-Enhanced Activities To Support Foreign Language Literacy And Cultural Reflection Skill

I'm using this computer-assisted program to help teachers/students notice rhetorical patterns in Japanese essays and score them based on a rubric.  The rubric was designed to place emphasis on students' ability to express intercultural competence.  By color-coding students' responses, we can see where they use language effectively to fulfill different parts of the rubric:

Teachers often lack adequate training, time, and resources to support students’ second
language reading and culture-learning skills. To address this challenge, a set of
technology-enhanced activities (TEAs) were designed based on Koda and Yamashita’s
(2017) Reading to Learn framework for the Japanese program at CMU. Completed at
the beginning and end of the semester, the TEAs reinforce the Japanese courses’
learning objectives, while providing teachers and students a way to monitor their
language and culture-learning skills. They first scaffold students’ comprehension of a
Japanese cultural text by providing dictionary glosses and questions to monitor
comprehension. They then provide graphic organizers to help students engage in
cultural comparisons between the target culture and their own culture. Finally, they ask
students to present their refined intercultural understandings through short written
reflections. I present the results of the first pilot and suggest ways the TEAs can be
adapted for other classroom contexts.

Tsai, Aurora
DC, Modern Languages