Tuesday, May 29, 2007

SLanguages 2007 Conference

by Gavin Dudeney

A much smaller affair than the Best Practices, which was obviously a model of good organisation and a great success – congratulations to all! However, we hope this will be interesting to those of you who are engaged with language education in-world.


The Consultants-E are proud to host the first Annual Second Life Language Teaching Colloquium (SLanguages ) 2007 on Saturday June 23rd on the island of EduNation in Second Life. The aim of this event is to bring together practitioners working (or planning to work) in language education in Second Life, for a series of presentations followed by a panel discussion.


The explosive growth in Second Life over the past few months has brought more and more educators in-world and we are now seeing an increasing number of language educators experimenting with the environment and trying to work towards ideas for exploiting it in their teaching. However, recent conversations on lists such as the Second Life Languages one have thrown up some serious queries and debates on the effectiveness of such environments on the language learning process and have demonstrated that more discussion and experimentation are needed in order to fully get to grips with 'Web 3-D'. Additionally, the entrance of larger organisations such as LanguageLab and the British Council has increased interest in Multi-User Learner Environments and has started off the debate on a possible roadmap for future work in-world.

Through the course of the event, we hope to tease out some of the major issues and considerations in delivering language education in Second Life, and work towards some basic guidelines for best practice in the area.


The event will take place in the Seminar Area of EduNation, the Consultants-E sim in Second Life. You can find the island using the Search facility in Second Life, or by following this URL: http://tinyurl.com/yehbto

Technical Details

The seminar will use Second Life as its primary medium, but will also make use of a Ventrilo voice server. In order to hear the presenters and participate, you will need to download and configure the Ventrilo voice client. This can be downloaded from the following site: http://www.ventrilo.com/download.php . Details of how to connect to the EduNation Ventrilo server will be given nearer the day, once the approved list of participants has been finalised.


The event has a limit of 50 participants, so you are encouraged to sign up early to avoid disappointment. You can sign up for the event in-world by IMing Dudeney Ge (Editor's note: or see email address in original SLED list posting) stating your real name and your SL avatar name. If sign-ups exceed 50, we will put people on a waiting list and they will be moved into the participant list as and when spaces become available.


The talk visuals and audio streams will be archived and made available on the island as soon as possible after the event. If you are unable to attend, we will keep these materials available for a while after the event so that you can catch up with what we hope are going to be stimulating and diverse presentations from around the globe.


All times are GMT (CET in round brackets) [ SL in square brackets ]

Full abstracts will follow shortly...

08:45 – 09:00 (10:45 – 11:00) [01:45 – 02:00]

  • Introduction from Gavin Dudeney, Project Director of The Consultants-E

09:00 – 09:45 (11:00 – 11:45) [02:00 – 02:45]

  • Paul Preibisch & Kip Boahn (Korea)
    The English Village Project

10:00 – 10:45 (12:00 – 12:45) [03:00 – 03:45]

  • Hugh O'Donnell
    The Scottish Secondary Sector

11:00 – 11:45 (13:00 – 13:45) [04:00 – 04:45]

  • Nik Peachey
    Materials Design in SL (LanguageLab)

11:45 – 12:15 (13:45 – 14:15) [04:45 – 05:15]

  • Poster Presentations

12:15 – 13:15 (14:15 – 15:15) [05:15 – 06:15]


13:15 – 14:00 (15:15 – 16:00) [06:15 – 07:00]

  • Birdie Newborn
    Language Inside & Outside the Classroom

14:15 – 15:00 (16:15 – 17:00) [07:15 – 08:00]

  • Graham Stanley & Kyle Mawer
    Tales of Mystery, Imagination & Education in the Teen Grid (British Council)

15:15 – 16:30 (17:15 – 18:30) [08:15 – 09:30]

Panel Discussion

Poster Presentations

The poster presentation session is for those attendees who are working in language education in Second Life, but are not speaking at the event. If you would like to display a poster about any SL work you are doing (with optional landmark and notecard), please contact Dudeney Ge in-world to transfer full permission versions of the texture, landmark and notecard. Our staff will take care of putting your poster together and displaying it in the Social Area on the island.

If you do decide to prepare a poster presentation it would be valuable if you could be with your poster through the duration of the poster session to talk to interested participants.

Lunch Break

The lunch break is not only an opportunity to take a break from the conference, should you need one, but also a chance to chat to the other participants and to enjoy the event in a more relaxed social environment. You are encouraged to break off into groups and explore the themes of the day with like-minded colleagues.

Q & A

The Q & A will give each presenter 5 minutes to summarise their thoughts on the day's discussions and presentations before moving on to open the debate up to the audience for approximately 45 minutes. Questions from the audience will be fielded by Dudeney Ge and directed to appropriate presenters as they are submitted. Please note that questions must be sent to the moderator and not directly spoken in public chat.


Please note that this is not a commercial venture, and whilst reference to actual in-world locations and events, as well as RL organisations and work are fine in the context of the event, presentations have been designed to be informative rather than commercial. Speakers may, of course, hand out notecards, landmarks and free SL gifts as they choose.

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