Category: Uncategorized

Podcast Projects for Heritage Language Learners

April 12, 2019
Room 9204
The Graduate Center
11:00am – 1:00pm

Presenter: Elena Foulis, The Ohio State University

Lecture Description:

Podcasts are an increasingly popular way to learn about an issue or a community through an intimate form of storytelling, and they present an innovative avenue for language pedagogy.
The university-based podcast Ohio Habla is produced with students in Advanced Spanish Heritage Language and Latina/o/x Studies courses. Each student does all the necessary planning and researching, secures a podcast guest, and carries out an interview. In the process of producing an entire 30-45-minute episode from start to finish, students develop reading, writing, speaking, and listening skills. This presentation explains the podcast’s background as a project that is born out of an oral history collection that emphasizes storytelling as a venue to learn and inform those who listen, and outlines how it works as a pedagogical tool for developing creativity and socially-engaged writing, interviewing, and listening skills.

Elena Foulis is a Senior Lecturer of Spanish, Service-Learning and Heritage Language at Ohio State University. She holds a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature and Cultural Studies. Her research and publications explore U.S. Latina/o literature, Latin@ voices in oral history, and oral history as participatory pedagogy in service-learning classrooms. She currently teaches courses in service-learning and Spanish for Heritage Speakers. She is also working on a digital oral history project about Latin@s in Ohio, which is being archived at the Center for Folkore Studies’ internet collection.

Spring 2018 ILETC Events

Here’s what we have on the ILETC calendar for Spring 2018:


Applying Microlearning to Mandarin Instruction and Assessment
     (Click for complete details)
February 23, 2018
Room 8301
The Graduate Center, CUNY
365 5th Avenue, New York, NY 10016

This workshop will share ongoing mobile app development for Chinese language teaching and learning.
Click link above for complete details. There is no prior registration required for this event.

For more information on any ILETC event, email or call 212-817-2083.

Applying Microlearning to Mandarin Instruction and Assessment

February 23, 2018

Room 8301
The Graduate Center, CUNY
365 5th Avenue, New York, NY 10016

Presenters: Ling Luo and Hao Tang

Workshop description:

This workshop will share ongoing mobile app development for Chinese language teaching and learning. The mobile app, Applying Microlearning Concept, can be used as a supplemental learning tool. In the app, students can play the game-based exercises at any time in any location. Instructors can easily assign exercises according to textbooks and trace students’ performance. This workshop is geared towards CUNY language instructors.

In the workshop, presenters will:

  1. Introduce Microlearning as a technique in language teaching and learning
  2. Share the experience using the app for Chinese teaching and learning
  3. Demonstrate the features of the app and collect feedback

In the workshop, participants will:

  1. Learn to apply Microlearning as a technique in language teaching
  2. Explore a supplemental learning tool in Mandarin using crowd sourcing approach

When Heritage and Second Language Learners Come Together

February 15, 2019
Room 9206
The Graduate Center
10:30am – 12:30pm

Presenter: Maria Carreira

Lecture description:

Research by the National Heritage Language Resource Center (NHLRC) shows that more often than not, HL learners study their home language in the context of mixed classes, that is, classes with second language learners (L2 learners) and HL learners. Yet, most of the work on HL teaching has focused on specialized HL classes, to the neglect of mixed classes. Addressing this gap, this lecture by Maria Carreira presents some foundational principles behind teaching mixed classes.

Maria Carreira is professor of Spanish at California State University, Long Beach. Her research focuses on heritage languages, with a concentration in Spanish in the US as well as the less commonly taught languages. Her recent work focuses on identity, resilience, and heritage language development and maintenance. She is also co-director of the National Heritage Language Resource Center at UCLA, Chair of the SAT Spanish Committee, and Associate Editor of Hispania.

Error Correction in Language Classrooms: Balancing Research and Realities

October 29, 2018
Room 9207
The Graduate Center
4:30 – 5:30pm

Presenter: Lourdes Ortega

Workshop description:

Correcting grammar errors in speaking or writing is thought to be part of every language teacher’s job, a professional duty that many language teachers excel in and that most language students expect. There are however many complexities that teachers wonder about, encompassing affective concerns (Will it demotivate some of my students?), time management (How can it become less time consuming?), doubts about effectiveness (How do I know that it is making a difference in my students’ accuracy?), proficiency differences (Should I correct errors in the same ways regardless of my students’ language level?), and educational goals and philosophies of teaching (How should I reconcile correcting for accuracy with teaching for communication? How do I manage language accuracy efforts like error correction in the context of teaching other important dimensions of a foreign language, like culture, literature, or writing?). I discuss some best practices for correcting language students’ errors; balancing research findings with the realities of foreign language education.

Lourdes Ortega is a Professor in the Department of Linguistics at Georgetown University and a Visiting Fellow at the Advanced Research Collaborative, CUNY Graduate Center. Her main area of expertise is in second language acquisition, and she is committed to investigating what it means to become a bilingual or multilingual language user later in life in ways that can encourage connections between research and teaching and promote social justice. Before moving to the USA in 1993, she taught Spanish as a foreign language at the Cervantes Institute in Athens, Greece, and English as a second language in Hawaii and Georgia. She has published widely and her books include Understanding Second Language Acquisition (2009, translated into Mandarin in 2016), and Technology-mediated TBLT (with Marta González-Lloret, John Benjamins, 2014). She just finished The Cambridge Handbook of Bilingualism (co-edited with Annick De Houwer, 2019, Cambridge University Press).

Fall 2016 ILETC Events

Welcome to Fall 2016! ILETC is looking forward to a semester filled with stimulating and illuminating public events. Here’s what we have on the calendar so far:

Multilingualism and Language Empowerment: A Response to Inequality
This symposium highlights the value and relevance of language and literacy projects conducted at the Graduate Center to New York’s multilingual population.
When: Friday, September 23, 8:45 a.m.–5:05 p.m.
Where: Skylight Room, 9th Floor, The Graduate Center, CUNY — 365 5th Avenue

Project-Based Learning Workshop
This workshop will be led by Dr. Julio Rodriguez, Director of the Center for Language & Technology and National Foreign Language Resource Center at the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa.
When: Friday, October 21, 3:00–7:30 p.m.
Where: Room 9207, The Graduate Center, CUNY — 365 5th Avenue
Note: Capacity is limited, prior registration required. See event page for details and registration form.

Materials for Teaching Arabic to Heritage Learners
Focus group to evaluate materials being developed for the teaching of Arabic to heritage learners
When: Friday, October 28
Where: The Graduate Center, CUNY — 365 5th Avenue
Note: Prior registration required. Email for details

ACTFL 2016 Convention and Expo
ILETC’s sister organization, the Center for Integrated Language Communities (CILC) (one of 16 National Foreign Language Resource Centers) will be presenting at the 2016 Annual Convention of the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages in Boston, Massachusetts.
The following presentations will update the public on CILC’s ongoing research:

     Telecollaborative Mobile Apps
     Friday, November 18, 2:30 pm–3:30 p.m.

     Heritage Telecollaboration and the Construction of US Latin@ Identity
     Saturday, November 19, 8:00–9:00 a.m.

     Intercultural Discussions with Foreign Partners Using Smartphones
     Saturday, November 19, 8:00–9:00 a.m.

     Writing Proficiency of Chinese, Korean and Spanish Heritage Learners
     Saturday, November 19, 8:30–9:00 a.m.

     CILC Survey of Students and Instructors of Language at Community College
     Saturday, November 19, 11:15–11:45 a.m.

HT News: June 2016

From the desk of Valeria Belmonti.

Greetings from the Heritage Telecollaboration team!

We have had a very productive end of the Spring semester and would like to share some information on our recent activities.

Project Development

We recently completed the first pilots of our HT Spanish projects, entitled, respectively, “Latinos in the US” and “Mapas Alternos.” We also began the process of reviewing the results of the first pilot of the modules that we ran in Fall 2015 for Professor Li’s Chinese Heritage course at Queens College. We are excited about the outcome of our first pilots, and we expect to have the modules published on our website by the end of the Fall 2016 semester.

We have also recently completed the design of the modules for the Chinese Heritage course to be taught in Fall 2016 by Professor Cheng at Hunter College/CUNY in collaboration with Professor Guo’s English course at Inner Mongolia Normal University in Hohhot, China.

Professor Guo will be returning to China at the end of June, after spending a year in the US as a Fulbright Visiting Scholar.

We look forward to piloting the modules in Fall. We thank Professor Guo for her contribution and collaboration and wish her safe travels back to China.


Several of our projects were presented at the 2016 COIL Conference in April and the CALICO conference in May. We thank the COIL and CALICO organizations for their support, those who attended our sessions for their interest and thorough questions, and the many other presenters at both conferences for giving inspiring sessions.

Laura Villa and María Jesús Barros García
COIL, April 25, 2016

Download presentation: PDF


Valeria Belmonti
COIL, April 25, 2016

Download presentation: PDF

Laura Villa (photo unavailable)
CALICO, May 12, 2016

Download presentation: PDF

We will present our HT projects at the 2016 ACTFL Convention in Boston in November. We will also share a booth at ACTFL with our sister LRCs and hold a Technology Roundtable Presentation on Telecollaborative Mobile Tools.

We will publish details on the location of the CILC booth and the dates and times of our presentations later on in the summer, so stay tuned!

Don’t forget that early bird registration for ACTFL will close on July 13.

Click here to register for ACTFL 2016!


On May 26, we conducted a professional development workshop for some of the language teachers at St. Peter’s Boys High School in Staten Island, NY, in cooperation with the College of Staten Island. We overviewed free Web 2.0 and mobile tools, and discussed applications of the tools in alignment with the ACTFL Proficiency Guidelines and Can-Do statements.

If you are an educator interested in organizing a technology professional development opportunity for your language teachers, and you are located in the New York metropolitan area, please contact Valeria Belmonti at

Until next time! Ciao, hasta luego, 再见 !

This post was updated on June 17, 2016 with the presentations that we shared at the conferences, adapted for web publishing. All rights reserved.

Valeria Belmonti is Associate Director of Technology at CILC and Coordinator of the Heritage Telecollaboration projects.

ACTFL Writing Guidelines Familiarization

Who? All language instructors

When? One day: 6/1

What? Intended as an introduction to the ACTFL Proficiency Guidelines 2012 – Writing, this workshop introduces participants to the major and minor level descriptors and the criteria for assigning a global writing proficiency rating. Participants explore a variety of writing tasks across levels of proficiency, evaluate language samples based on the criteria as described in the Guidelines, and design appropriate writing activities and writing assessment prompts at the four major levels.

Space is limited. Registration is first-come, first-served!​

Click here to register: