News item

news iconCall for papers - special issue of Language Learning Journal

Papers are invited for a forthcoming special issue of the Language Learning Journal, the official journal of the Association for Language Learning (ALL), on Languages of the Wider World: Valuing Diversity.


paper iconPromoting less-widely-taught languages. The outreach experience of the Foreign Language Awareness Group for Schools (FLAGS)

In the current downward trend in the uptake of languages, and especially of less-widely-taught languages, FLAGS aims at enthusing sixth-formers with an interest in either Italian, Russian and / or Portuguese through a series of language sessions delivered through the Virtual Learning Environment WebCT. Pupils' progress is aided and monitored by University students, who act as language facilitators on a weekly basis. This paper assesses the outcomes at the end of the first year of FLAGS' life, as well as the challenges met during the project's setting-up period and throughout its duration.

paper iconCollaborative writing in Russian with shared text editor
A shared text editor was introduced into a Russian class in writing skills and used over a period of four years. It was initially adopted for its potential practical advantages over a traditional classroom whiteboard. Its use has led to new language learning activities that have contributed to the whole language programme and the writing class has become more integrated into the language programme as a whole. Opportunities for sharing and collaboration have been greatly increased and the role of the teacher has changed.

Materials Bank Item

matbank iconRussian: Keyboard Tsar
Keyboard Tsar is a typing tutor program developed under a University of Leeds Teaching Fellowship project led by Dr Sarah Hudspith, now available as freeware to the public. It teaches touch typing both in English and in Cyrillic. The program consists in a series of exercises that gradually build up familiarity and proficiency in touch typing, in groups of letters according to the keyboard layout. Users are given feedback on speed, accuracy and most common errors at the end of each exercise, and are encouraged to reach a certain level of accuracy before proceeding to the next exercise. Keyboard Tsar has a bright, modern interface which can highlight the required key and the necessary finger to use. Colours, font styles and sizes can be adapted to the user's preferences. The Cyrillic component is specially for non-native speakers of Russian. It includes a glossary of translations for the test words, a review of the Russian alphabet with sound, and it can toggle between English and Cyrillic keyboard layouts in its on-screen display.

Web Guide (GPG)

webguide iconRussian language, literature and culture in the UK
Russian studies in the UK is experiencing contraction at present but the subject remains lively and pro-active in its degree and course provision. Departments teach the Russian language at all levels (from ab initio to final honours), and some may also offer the chance to study one of the other languages of Eastern Europe, while there is considerable diversity in the range of literature and culture options on offer.
webguide iconRussian studies in UK universities
An account of offerings and trends in Russian Studies in the UK at the undergraduate and postgraduate levels, including a brief history of the field, details of selected modules within key programmes, and of the main centres for study of Russia and the former Soviet Union