Engaging English: Lowering the Barriers

As online learning courses continue to grow in popularity, many institutions of higher learning have begun to provide online degree programs for distance learners.  Even on-campus student populations now embrace online options.  According to this Education News article, public support of online learning is growing rapidly.  As the article points out, although public opinion is fairly static from one year to the next on most issues, in just one year (2009 to 2010) the public’s perception of the value of online learning has grown ten percentage points.

 In response to public demand, universities have steadily expanded their online course offerings to include a wide range of academic areas, notably foreign languages.  Many schools are now offering more hybrid courses, courses that provide a combination of online and classroom learning.  This uptick in hybrid courses has resulted in an increase of web-based products now available to support online learning.  According to the New York Times:

These days, online programs and CDs…are grabbing the interest of people attracted by their convenience and relatively low cost.  But more schools are offering their own online-only language courses as part of extension programs.

This is great news for those unable to attend a traditional language class.  Traditional constraints like scheduling, location and high costs have diminished considerably.  And lowered barriers mean more opportunity not only for current college students and adult learners, but also for professionals in the business world seeking to expand their global competence by adding language fluency to their resume.  By utilizing new technologies, learners will be able to develop and hone their language skills with greater convenience than ever before. 

As we’ve written before, English is widely accepted as the language of business, and many international students want to avoid being left out of the conversation.  In order to ensure that their voice will be heard (and their meaning understood) as they enter the business world and international marketplace, thousands of students take the TOEFL exam each year to gain acceptance to a university. In following with the growing trend of online learning, one product recently developed to help learners prepare for this exam and improve their English reading skills is our own Engaging English.  Engaging English offers a personal and interactive learning platform for users wanting to strengthen their English speaking skills.  Users may read targeted, online content across a wide spectrum of interest areas as a way to strengthen their English speaking skills and prepare for the reading demands likely to be found throughout their professional lives.   Because Engaging English is entirely online and self-guided, users have maximum convenience and flexibility in establishing responsibility for their own reading growth.   

If you haven’t yet seen Engaging English, be sure to give it a look.

Tags: , , ,

No Comments

No comments yet.

RSS feed for comments on this post.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.