One of the most valuable things students can do to boost their language learning potential while abroad is to keep a record of their progress. This assignment requires students to create a language learning journal as a way to keep track of what they do every day as they use the language in both structured and unstructured settings. It will also serve as a record of their first impressions with using the language in context. A second part of the assignment requires students to generate a Top Ten Tips for Language Learning in short-term, education abroad experiences.
It may be best to avoid requiring a specific structure for the journal, but emphasize that students should make daily entries with as much detail as possible. Recommended sections can include a section in which students lay out their language learning goals, a section in which they note the colloquial usages of the language, and a section in which students reflect on their mistakes in using the language appropriately in context. Additional sections can focus on the acquisitions of new vocabulary, practical usage of new grammatical structures, and space for students to illustrate how the language is used in a visual context. At least one section should allow students space for miscellaneous musings on their language learning.
This two-part assignment can be worth up to 30% of the overall course grade: 25% for the Language Learning Journal and 5% for the Tips for Language Learning. The journal should be assessed on a student’s demonstrated effort toward learning the language and the depth and breadth of the daily entries. The tips for language learning should be assessed on their originality and realistic application to short-term, education abroad experiences.
No class time required