EnglishCentral is a company that takes pride in having experienced teachers on staff and designing a product that will help students learn and acquire English, especially for international communication.
Too often technology is designed without the control or voice of educators. Technology for technology’s sake. We’ve tried to avoid this and put pedagogy first. Here below are the key pedagogical aspects on which our platform is based. You can read in more detail about our pedagogical foundations on our blog.
The EnglishCentral Pedagogical Foundation
We live in a visual and digital world. Students consume an enormous amount of digital content and video has become the new textbook. EnglishCentral harnesses this built in, intrinsic level of motivation – why not learn English while viewing videos you love? We publish 30 new video lessons each week and our vast library offers every learner the chance to study what they want and listen to messages they want to hear.
2. Comprehensible Input
Not only do students need to listen to messages they want to hear – these messages must be level appropriate (Krashen, 2001). Each EnglishCentral video lesson or course, plus our vocabulary can be assigned to students based on their level of English. This provides appropriate practice and input, maximizing language acquisition.
3. Precise, Timely Feedback
EnglishCentral provides instant feedback to students. Students begin to “notice the gap” (Schmidt, 1990) and begin to self-correct and develop learner autonomy. Students can click on words they don’t know and get more information. Also compare their speech to the original. Tools are provided so students can “dig down” and understand the language while getting the answers they need immediately.
4. A Lowered Affective Filter
Many students go through a substantial silent period (Krashen, 1995). Others need the time and space given through self-study before they are ready to excel in the very socially demanding classroom. EnglishCentral provides a safe, low anxiety environment where learners can proceed at their own pace and practice speaking in a non-threatening place. Teachers are often amazed how the quiet students in their class “bloom” on EnglishCentral.
5. An Oral Language Focus
The 21st century workplace and global nature of communication demands that students have strong speaking skills. The importance of written communication is receding. EnglishCentral’s proprietary speech recognition system IntelliSpeech™ trains students to produce, clear, intelligible speech for effective communication across cultures and borders.
6. Blended Learning
The future of education lies in blended learning (Arne Duncan, 2014). EnglishCentral partners with schools and teachers offering a unique blended learning model and platform. Courses and video lessons can perfectly compliment what students learn in class, providing students with extra practice matching the class curriculum. Our free LMS lets teachers extend the curriculum and track student achievement.
7. Structured Learning
Our simple Watch | Learn | Speak methodology provides low cognitive overload and an easy to follow learning pathway. Courses and video lessons are leveled and vocabulary is presented with spaced-time repetition. EnglishCentral monitors every word or expression students study and provides a simple interface where students can use the feedback to improve their pronunciation and build their vocabulary.
Students are highly engaged by the gaming dynamics of EnglishCentral. Students compete for XPs (Experience Points) and ranking through their study. However, we don’t go overboard and aim to keep the focus on the learning, not the gaming.
9. Ambiguity Tolerance
Language is a vast and unpredictable space. Successful language learners are risk takers. Critical to being a risk taker is having a strong ability to not be stressed out by what you don’t understand (Brown, 2007). EnglishCentral provides authentic content that challenges students to focus on the general meaning and gist and strengthen their level of ambiguity tolerance.
Interested in reading more about EnglishCentral and why it works? Read more here.