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Issue 4:

Speech Technology for Language Learning: Research & Today's Tools

Joan Palmiter Bajorek

Due to rapid advances in speech technology in recent years, tools for language learning are also transforming. This is seen through speech technologies such as Siri, Alexa, and Google Assistant (Apple, 2016; Amazon, 2014; Google, 2012) which include automatic speech recognition and speech synthesis with text-to-speech. For language learners, research demonstrates the efficacy of technology for second language (L2) speech development and pronunciation growth (Bajorek, 2017a). Effective studies include visualizations, feedback to learners, and scaffolded activities that build awareness of linguistic and phonetic knowledge.

In this article, contemporary research and tools are explored and connected to practical teaching techniques to try out today. Contemporary free speech technology tools like ELSA and Google Docs Voice Typing, which can be used in the classroom, provide innovative diagnostic tools and voice typing available in 119 languages (Ong, 2017). This software expands learner insight into speech patterns and overall support of language exploration, leading to language acquisition.

Topics and Questions Covered:

1. Speech Technology

2. Best Practices Recommendations Checklist

3. Speech Development and Speech Technology

4. Today’s Tools

5. Pronunciation Goals for Learners

6. Future Directions

You can access the full article here.

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Share Your Research 

THANK YOU to OLLReN member Boris Vazquez-Calvo for sharing his article The Online Ecology of Literacy and Language Practices of a Gamer.

If you have published any reports or papers recently and would like us to include them in the next bulletin, please send us a reference to the research so we can make your work more visible and share it with those directly interested in your area. Please use the Contact Us form on our website to notify us of your research publications.

Work With Us – OLLReN Roving Reporter

Are you planning to attend a conference about technology in education and interested in sharing your experience? We are looking for ELT professionals to summarize what topics are hot, and what may be missing, in leading conferences around the world. Become an OLLReN Roving Reporter and we will cover the cost of your conference registration (restrictions apply). To apply, please complete the OLLReN Roving Reporter Application.

With warm regards,
OLLReN Management Board
Laureate-Cambridge Online Language Learning Research Network (OLLReN)
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