Learning New Languages Through Immersive Tools
By Fazreen Razeek, EdArabia
Immersive learning has become the hallmark for a handful of activities, not least of which is learning new languages. Today, immersive tools are readily used in the classroom environment to bring the world closer to the student like never before. Learners can now explore places that are impossible to experience in real-life, and that makes the learning process more profound than it has been in the past. Learning languages through immersive tools can help students improve their language skills, giving them a boost in their current language courses or testing.
On top of that, gaming has also taken a huge leap forward in the same capacity, making the immersive experience a unique one for video gamers all over. Needless to say, the applicability of immersive learning and the use of immersive tools is widening as technology gets better, and the various spheres of learning are accommodating this trend.
When it comes to learning new languages, the need to travel abroad to accomplish that task is no longer essential, at least, not while immersive tools exist. From mobile and computer apps to the fast-paced growth of VR technology that recreates real-life scenarios that the user can readily engage in for personal and immersive lessons in various languages, taking on French, Mandarin, Russian, and other languages has never been easier.
What Makes Immersive Tools Effective for Learning Languages?
The key aspect that makes immersive tools quite effective when it comes to learning is their capacity to absorb the learner into the simulated environment, what is called immersion. Immersion is the definitive factor that makes using a VR environment no more different from traveling abroad for a similarly immersive experience in an entirely new culture for an opportunity to learn a new language.
Take this scenario as an example; you visit a French restaurant in Paris, and you readily engage with the people in it in French, in both listening and speaking terms. The catch is, you’re using your computer and VR gear to conduct all of this! It sounds surreal, but it is very much possible. Immersive tools present a unique and real opportunity for those keen to learn new languages in their comfort zones, and in the same capacity they would in a real scenario. The immersive factor that such tools offer makes the experience quite conducive for a beginner learning a new language. After all, it is the level of experience that naturally determines how effectively and efficiently you learn a new language.
Learning New Languages Using Immersive Tools
Before, it would have been the suggestion of virtually any person that the only way to effectively learn a new language was to surround yourself with people who speak the host language. Immersive tools have turned the tables nowadays. IT specialists now clarify that immersive learning is just as effective. Most of these immersive tools usually recreate real environments that constitute language learning lessons, which can be revisited as many times as possible for maximum retention. Among these immersive tools include:
- VirtualSpeech: Getting to learn a new language is usually met with the need to communicate, to measure your capacity to converse in your new tongue effectively. Among other things, that is what VirtualSpeech offers as a VR platform. It actively enhances an individual’s skills of communication in the English language, particularly as it is used in the business and corporate world. Since it is tailored to function as an English-learning platform as it pertains to business, it recreates and simulates various business scenarios, for example when you are speaking with clients, or meeting with stakeholders, thus bringing an original and authentic experience in such an arena.
- ImmerseMe: ImmerseMe is another VR language learning platform that also does what VirtualSpeech does, only that in this particular instance, you have a wider choice of languages you can readily select. It also takes you through various scenarios that allow you to communicate with various subjects regarding one issue or another directly.
- FluentU: FluentU is a bit different from the above-mentioned immersive tools in that it takes different video content and makes them into personalized lessons in various languages. As you delve deeper into learning the content, and thus, the language, you become more acquainted in your language of choice.
How Do You Effectively Use Immersive Tools to Learn a New Language?
There are a few pointers you can employ to make sure you are getting the most out of your language learning experience using immersive tools. As you go through the motions, remember to:
- Put your new language skills to the test in a real-world scenario.
- Invite any type of feedback so that you can enhance your skills in the process.
- Go through the lessons as many times as possible until you’re comfortable to test yourself in the real world.
Learning new languages through immersive tools is a great way for students to explore their interests through languages and develop a specialty – a key component to standing out in the US admissions process.
About Fazreen Razeek
Fazreen Razeek from Edarabia has served the digital industry for over five years. He collaborates and works alongside agencies, event organizers, and suppliers to develop and execute their marketing strategies. He is extremely passionate about education technology and also writes for various local and international publications. A graduate with High Distinction from the Edith Cowan University, Perth, Australia, Fazreen holds a bachelor’s degree with a double major in marketing & management.