This module lets students converse in pairs or groups of three or four. It greatly resembles the regular Client module because it has almost all the same functions, so that a teacher can have students listen to an audio clip, read textual material and questions, view a video clip or images, or use other resources as a basis for the discussion. Conversations can be recorded and students can replay them afterward. A teacher can also use LangLab PASSPORT's Teacher module to listen to these recordings and insert comments on any student's participation, as with students' recordings made using the regular Client module.
A small window in the left portion of the screen shows who is in the student's group, and the Manage Group button above it brings up an extra screen that lets the student join or leave a group, if the teacher has students choose their own groups. Using the Let'sT@lkMonitor module, the teacher can also form groups manually (including assign students to groups before class) or let the module assign students to groups randomly.
(Click on the image above for a larger view.)
- As with the regular Client module, students can work with or without a teacher monitoring them. (The Let'sT@lkMonitor module lets the teacher join groups, but the teacher can also use Let'sT@lkClient and do so.)
- Conversation classes are lessons divided into items, just like other LangLab lessons.
- A teacher's comments are much easier to find in a segment of a conversation than they would be in one long conversation.
- A segmented conversation lends itself much better to use in collaborative testing than would one long conversation. When students are tested in pairs or groups, different materials can provide the stimulus for each item.
- Students usually enjoy a series of short conversations more than one long one. Topics can change, and students can even change groups from item to item.
- When the teacher lets students choose their own group, each student simply clicks on Manage Groups to bring up the grouping panel, then clicks on one of the groups to join it. If there are already enough people in the group, the student can click on QUIT GROUP and try another group.
- In Let'sT@lk, the Record button is only for recording the pair or group conversation, since an audio clip in an item is only for listeninga stimulus or source of background information for the conversation. To simplify putting together two or more students' contributions in one file, students in a pair or group agree to start recording and do so at roughly the same time.
- The Replay button is the one with the arrow bent around. After students record their conversation, they can simply click on this button to listen to it.