Innovation in Language Learning

Edition 17

Accepted Abstracts

Teaching Foreign Languages and Literature Using Synchronous and Asynchronous Online Courses

Josefa Conde de Lindquist, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (United States)


It is a fact that universities offer online courses. Teaching online has become an immense benefit for universities, professors, and students. Teaching online forced pedagogues to rethink teaching in a new environment, using different platforms, apps, and working with publishing companies. Students select online courses for the convenience and flexibility offered by online programs. A successful online foreign language course needs to meet several requirements: follow the institution’s curriculum, adopt an online textbook that meets the curriculum, use institutional online platforms (Blackboard, Sakai, etc.), decide on an asynchronous or synchronous course, and guarantee accessibility to foreign language students to engage in communicative practices. The coordination of these elements must be achieved either in asynchronous or synchronous online courses. Research shows that asynchronous courses could result in the fossilization of errors, even though students have time to prepare and review mistakes. Synchronous online courses encourage language understanding where students can rectify and identify general errors in real time. When it comes to foreign languages, universities need to decide between asynchronous or synchronous online courses. Nowadays, most universities already offer lower level language courses online. In addition to these courses, there is an increase of online composition, grammar, and literary courses. These courses need to provide meaningful learning to students of foreign languages where the students can interact with the faculty and experience a sense of community within the online course. Foreign language courses can be asynchronous and synchronous. This presentation will show that specific foreign language courses need to be either asynchronous or synchronous.

Keywords: Synchronous, asynchronous, teaching foreign languages online.

[1] Looney, Dennis and Lusin, Natalia. “Enrollments in Languages Other Than English in United States Institutions of Higher Education, Summer 2016 and Fall 2016: Preliminary Report.” MLA, February 2018, 1-20.
[2] Pineda, José Eduardo. “Development of Language Accuracy Using Synchronous and Asynchronous Learning Activities.” International Journal of Computer-Assisted Language Learning and Teaching, vol. 7, issue 4, October-December 2017, 59-74.
[3] Weiler, Spencer C. “Quality Virtual Instruction: The Use of Synchronous Online Activities to Engage International Students in Meaningful Learning.” Journal of International Education and Leadershi, vol. 2 issue 2, Summer 2012, 1-8.

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