University of Wisconsin–Madison

02.12.16 Online Platforms for Language Learning with Andrew Irving

Andrew IrvingAndrew Irving from French shares how he uses a specialized online platform (Imaginez) to structure and assess student learning. We explore some of the methods and strategies employed and discuss the pedagogical and administrative advantages and disadvantages of online textbooks such as this one.

Activity SheetNotesActive Teaching Lab full schedule

Designed to strengthen students’ language skills and develop cultural competency, Imaginez provides students with an active learning experience and a smooth transition between first-year and second-year French. It features a fresh, user-friendly design and short films by award-winning francophone filmmakers that serve as a springboard for exploring the themes and concepts in every lesson. Features include:

    • Unique integration of authentic, award-winning films
    • Signature design that supports and facilitates language learning
    • An articulated curriculum for seamless transition to advanced French
    • A flexible grammar sequence that keeps students focused and motivated
    • Fiches de grammaire that builds on concepts introduced in earlier lessons and provides additional grammar topics and activities
    • Simulated “voyages” to francophone regions through literary and cultural readings in each lesson
    • Groundbreaking, text-specific technology—now on a new Supersite platform with powerful tools—copy all assignments from previous courses in minutes; set time limits and passwords for assessments; add your own content; and more
    • Online chat activities—virtual conversations and live video chats for communication practice outside of class
    • vText—the interactive, online version of the textbook—that links directly with Supersite practice activities, audio, and video
    • iPad®-friendly* Supersite and vText for access on the go

*Students must use a computer for audio recording and select presentations and tools that require Flash or Shockwave.

– See more at:

Andrew’s Online Platforms for Language Learning Story


  • Be transparent with your students about:
    • why you are using a given technology or technique (maybe share what the research tells us about how teaching and learning in your discipline happens),
    • what you expect the students to do with the technology, including…
    • which parts of the technology you want them to use, and when.
  • If you are using a technology for flipping a classroom, make sure that what you do in class really are higher order learning activities.
  • Don’t overwhelm students with too many options. Scaffold their learning through a series of assignments to introduce them to various methods and technologies, one at a time. Once they’re comfortable with each, give them the choice of which they feel help them learn best, OR then have an assignment that integrates multiple methods or technologies.

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