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Tuesday, 9 January 2018

Five Ways Students Can Use Technology to Improve Their English

Remember the days when you weren’t even allowed to take your calculator into an exam room? Many teachers will have been brought up in that kind of era, which is why it can be difficult to adapt to the changes of modern technology in today's classrooms. 

However students lives are dominated by the latest devices and by embracing this, teachers can reach out to their students in a much more effective way. There are many ways to use technology in teaching and it is especially effective when learning the English vocabulary in a way that it is used on a day-to-day basis.

Having a reliable desktop computer is a must have these days, but beyond that here are five simple but effective ways to help students use technology to improve their English skills.

Podcasts
The iTunes store provides a wide range of English learning. Students can choose one that suites them specifically. Whether they are beginners or advanced speakers, there are podcasts to suit all levels. The convenience of being able to listen to podcasts anywhere such as on the bus, the train, walking to college or between classes, makes it a great way to develop English skills. Many podcasts also provide transcripts, which can be used for making notes as well as matching written words with spoken words. As well as being convenient, podcasts are also cost effective as the majority of them are free.

Online Tutor Sites
Having your own personal one-to-one tutor is the best way to be taught. However your progress depends on the availability of a reputable tutor located in your area. With the use of technology, students can use an online tutor. Often the tutors will provide a free 15-minute trial before students commit to a course.

You Tube
There are now thousands of videos on YouTube dedicated to teaching the English language. Videos are a great way to enhance English skills because you can see the person talking and this will help students with pronunciation.  This is a free way to learn and it is easy to stop and start the videos whenever you need to. Some of the videos have subtitles included to assist with word recognition.

Free Language Exchange Programme
Skype, Facetime and other video calling methods have made it possible for people on opposite sides of the world to connect. This has prompted the set up of language exchange programmes. The idea of the program is to partner up two people who are looking to learn each other’s language. Once a match has been found, the pair can arrange to talk as often as they like via video link, and improve their language skills,

Phone Apps
There is an app for everything and learning a language is no exception. Make sure you read the reviews before choosing which app to download, as the methods of learning vary significantly for each app. You can find apps that simply take you step by step through the language with tests at the end of each section. These are particularly good if you want to be led through the process. Other apps require you to enter details onto flash cards, so there is some set up time involved. Other apps provide learning as more of a game, which encourages the user to progress quicker and makes it more fun.

With so much help out there, it really is worth embracing technology to enhance the learning journey for students and improve English skills.