Marketing your language or literacy program: 10 webinars recorded

May 31, 2012

This week we wrapped up our 10-week webinar series on how to market your literacy or language program. Nine of the ten programs featured ideas from  101 Ways to Market Your Language Program. The 10th and final webinar focused on social media, including:

  • Brief overview of social media marketing for non-profit and educational programs
  • Building your social media capacity to market your programs more effectively.
  • Do’s and dont’s of social media marketing.

Here is the tenth webinar recording for you. There are links to the other nine programs below.

If you like these webinars and find them helpful, please share them with others, leave a comment or “like” the video on YouTube.  Thanks to everyone who joined us.

Related post and recordings of past programs:

101 Ways to Market Your Language Program (10 Free webinars) http://wp.me/pNAh3-1j6

#1 Webinar recording: Marketing strategy and planning

#2 Webinar recording: Setting marketing goals and budgets

#3 Webinar recording: Writing effective marketing copy

#4 Webinar recording: Developing written marketing materials

#5 Webinar recording: Identifying what makes you unique

#6 Webinar recording: Speciality tips for programs at large institutions

#7 Webinar recording: The power of your connections

#8 Webinar recording: Relationship marketing

#9 Webinar recording: Effective marketing follow-up

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Share or Tweet this post:  Marketing your language or literacy program: 10 webinars recorded http://wp.me/pNAh3-1qC

If you are interested in booking me (Sarah Eaton) for a presentation, keynote or workshop (either live or via webinar) contact me at sarahelaineeaton (at) gmail.com. Please visit my speaking page, too.


Dear students, It is not O.K. to cite Wikipedia as a source for scholarly articles. Sincerely, your prof.

May 31, 2012

Recently some of my graduate students presented papers that had citations from Wikipedia. Personally, I think there is some valuable information on Wikipedia. Anyone can be a contributor. I am a contributor and I would encourage anyone with a commitment to research and sharing knowledge to become a contributor, too. It’s a highly democratic knowledge base.

Having said that, because anyone can be a contributor, some entries can contain incorrect or inflammatory information.

Though some researchers believe it is fine to cite Wikipedia, there are others who are vehemently opposed to Wikipedia citations in academic work. It is a contentious topic in academia.

If you submit a manuscript to a peer-reviewed journal for consideration, it could happen that some reviewers might reject your manuscript based solely on the fact that you have cited Wikipedia… though they may never tell you that.

When it comes to citing Wikipedia, here is how to avoid upsetting journal editors or professors… or anyone else for that matter:

Step 1: Examine the primary references listed at the bottom of the a Wikipedia article.

Step 2: Check that they are real references. People have been known to fabricate primary sources and fake research papers. Go back to the original source.

Step 3: Read the original source yourself. It is good for you to learn how to read research articles published in peer-reviewed journal. This comes with the territory of being a student (particularly a grad student).

Step 4: Evaluate the original source.

Step 5: Once you are satisfied that the original research is sound, cite the original source instead of the Wikipedia article.

This is an extra step that will ensure your work — and you — are taken seriously in both professional and academic circles.

I am curious to know about your experiences with this topic? Thoughts? Feedback? Discussion?

References:

Moran, M. E. (2011). The top 10 reasons students cannot cite or rely on Wikipedia. Finding Dulcinea. Retrieved from http://www.findingdulcinea.com/news/education/2010/march/The-Top-10-Reasons-Students-Cannot-Cite-or-Rely-on-Wikipedia.html

Jaschik, S. (2007). A stand against Wikipedia. Inside Higher  Ed. Retrieved from http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2007/01/26/wiki

Williams College Libraries. (n.d.). Should I use or cite Wikipedia? Probably not.   Retrieved May 29, 2012, from http://library.williams.edu/citing/wikipedia.php

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Share or Tweet this post:  Dear students, It is not O.K. to cite Wikipedia as a source for scholarly articles. Sincerely, your prof. http://wp.me/pNAh3-1qx

If you are interested in booking me (Sarah Eaton) for a presentation, keynote or workshop (either live or via webinar) contact me at sarahelaineeaton (at) gmail.com. Please visit my speaking page, too.


Tomorrow: Free webinar on using social media to market literacy and language programs

May 29, 2012

Tomorrow we wrap up our series of ten free webinars on how to market literacy programs and language schools.

Each webinar has highlighted different ideas from 101 Ways to Market Your Language Program. Tomorrow is a little different in that the ideas and strategies provided are brand new information, not published in the book. The program will be  30 to 60 minutes in length. Bring a pen and paper. I’m going to give you lots of ideas you can implement right away.

Webinar #10 of 10 – What to expect

Today’s webinar will focus on:

  • Brief overview of social media marketing for non-profit and educational programs
  • Building your social media capacity to market your programs more effectively.
  • Do’s and dont’s of social media marketing.

Webinar time

Date: Wednesday, May 30, 2012

There are some time zone changes coming up around the world, so double-check these times against your local area:

Point of origin – 14:00 (2:00 p.m.) Mountain Time, May 16, 2012 Calgary / Edmonton

16:00 (4:00 p.m.) – Eastern Time – Toronto / New York

20:00 (8:00 p.m.) – Greenwich Time – London, England

22:00 (10:00 p.m.) – Eastern European Time – Athens / Istanbul

05:00 (5:00 a.m.) – following day – Japan Standard Time – Tokyo

How to log in

There is no need to register. These webinars are free and open to everyone. Seating is limited though, so sign on early.

To join the webinar, simply click here: http://meet11548754.adobeconnect.com/saraheaton/

Will it be recorded?

You bet. I’ll record the program and post it within 24 hours or so. No charges or fees to watch these recorded programs.

Related post and recordings of past programs:

101 Ways to Market Your Language Program (10 Free webinars) http://wp.me/pNAh3-1j6

#1 Webinar recording: Marketing strategy and planning

#2 Webinar recording: Setting marketing goals and budgets

#3 Webinar recording: Writing effective marketing copy

#4 Webinar recording: Developing written marketing materials

#5 Webinar recording: Identifying what makes you unique

#6 Webinar recording: Speciality tips for programs at large institutions

#7 Webinar recording: The power of your connections

#8 Webinar recording: Relationship marketing

#9 Webinar recording: Effective marketing follow-up

___________________________

Share or Tweet this post:  Tomorrow: Free webinar on using social media to market literacy and language programs http://wp.me/pNAh3-1ql

If you are interested in booking me (Sarah Eaton) for a presentation, keynote or workshop (either live or via webinar) contact me at sarahelaineeaton (at) gmail.com. Please visit my speaking page, too.


Learning to Talk Like Jesus: How TV shows in Sweden support the Aramaic revival in the Middle East

May 29, 2012

Sarah Elaine Eaton blog - Languages, Literacy and Leadership

Sweden is providing a new twist on learning an old language, for  young learners of Aramaic in the two villages in the Holy Land’s small Christian community, in Beit Jala, Palestine and Jish, Israel.

In the Beit Jala Mar Afram school, run by the Syrian Orthodox church, priests have taught over 320 students Aramaic over the past five years.

In Jish approximately 80 elementary school children are taking Aramaic as a voluntary option in school.

The elementary school children who take part in the Aramaic language learning program learn to speak, listen, write Aramaic script and read the language.

Dia Hadid of the Associated Press reports that:

“The dialect taught in Jish and Beit Jala is “Syriac,” which was spoken by their Christian forefathers and resembles the Galilean dialect that Jesus would have used, according to Steven Fassberg, an Aramaic expert at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem.”

The language classes have been met with criticisms from some parents and community members, some of whom are worried that having students learn Aramaic may be an attempt to convert them to Christianity or may be a threat to their Arabic identity.

According to the Associated Press, some members of the Christian community in the region still chant their liturgy in Aramaic, but few people understand the prayers.

Enter Sweden. Swedish officials estimate that anywhere from 30,000 to 80,000 Aramaic speakers reside in that country. The Aramaic community is strong there and includes an Aramaic soccer team, “Syrianska FC” in the Swedish top division from the town of Sodertalje.

Aramaic speakers in Sweden publish a newspaper called “Bahro Suryoyo”, as well as pamphlets and children’s books, including The Little Prince. But what really helps the students learn the language is Soryoyosat, a satellite television station maintained by the Swedish Aramaic community. For some members of these two villages in the holy land, watching Aramaic programming from Swedish TV station provided the first opportunity in decades for them to hear the language spoken outside church. The Associated Press reports that “Hearing it in a modern context inspired them to try revive the language among their communities.”

This is one case, where technology and television are benefitting language learners both in terms of making learning more accessible and in increasing their motivation. These kids are “kickin’ it old school”, using new technology. Aramaic may be saved, yet.

Related post:

Can TV can help you learn another language?

http://drsaraheaton.wordpress.com/2012/05/24/can-t-help-you-learn-another-language/

References

Associated Press. (2012, May 28). Pair of villages in Holy Land teaching Aramaic in effort to revive language that Jesus spoke: New focus comes with help from modern technology. NYDailyNews.com. Retrieved from http://www.nydailynews.com/news/world/pair-villages-holy-land-teaching-aramaic-effort-revive-language-jesus-spoke-article-1.1085728

Hadid, D. (2012, May 28). Aramaic: Efforts To Revive Jesus’ Language In Christian Villages Beit Jala, Jish In Holy Land, Sweden. Huffington Post. Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/05/28/aramaic-holy-land-jesus_n_1550507.html

Hadid, D. (2012, May 29). Revival of Jesus’ language attempted in two Holy Land villages. Southeast Missourian. Retrieved from http://www.semissourian.com/story/1854012.html

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Share or Tweet this post: Learning to Talk Like Jesus: How TV shows in Sweden support the Aramaic revival in the Middle East http://wp.me/pNAh3-1q7

If you are interested in booking me (Sarah Eaton) for a presentation, keynote or workshop (either live or via webinar) contact me at sarahelaineeaton (at) gmail.com. Please visit my speaking page, too.


The “Expert Paradox”

May 28, 2012

As students and researchers in training, our mentors and professors train us to understand that our opinions do not count. Every statement or claim must be backed up by research. Students who offer an opinion without providing references are noted as making “sweeping generalizations”.

In order to be taken seriously by senior researchers, students and junior researchers in training must position themselves and humble askers of questions who claim to know nothing, except perhaps, how to ask a good question. Even that requires some training. A junior researcher who claims to be an expert is shunned by their peers and superiors.

As researchers gain experience, they learn to ask better questions. The develop research questions with laser-like focus. They refine their research skills. Their research reports become more sophisticated. Their manuscripts are accepted for publication by esteemed peer-reviewed journals.

As researchers publish more and more articles, books and reports, and present at more conferences the more their research becomes better known. As it becomes better known, it becomes more highly valued. The more their research is valued, the more the researchers are sought after as experts in the field. Unlike the junior researcher, the senior researcher who becomes known as an expert is humble enough (either by virtue or by virtue of being trained) to never refer to himself or herself as an expert. The title “expert” is conferred by others.

When someone is called an expert by others, suddenly their opinions matter again. People are not only interested in knowing what the research says, they are interested in knowing what the expert thinks, too. An expert is a trusted source and a thought leader. Experts can persuade others more easily than someone else, who is relatively unknown.

An expert’s influence is a veritable commodity when it comes to endorsements. A reference letter from an noted and widely recognized expert is much more valuable than a reference from an average professional.

It is not until someone else calls you an expert that your opinion matters. Then, it matters a great deal.

Even if your opinion hasn’t changed much since you were a junior in the field.

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Share or Tweet this post: The “Expert Paradox” http://wp.me/pNAh3-1pT

If you are interested in booking me (Sarah Eaton) for a presentation, keynote or workshop (either live or via webinar) contact me at sarahelaineeaton (at) gmail.com. Please visit my speaking page, too.


Can TV can help you learn another language?

May 24, 2012

Recently someone asked me if watching TV in another language is a good way to learn that language. The answer is… it depends. There are a number of benefits and also a number of factors that may not benefit the learner. Here’s my take on it:

The good

Watching TV exposes you to authentic language, spoken by native speakers. The vocabulary and grammar that students are exposed to in textbooks is carefully controlled to make the learning process methodical. However, real life is not so methodical. By watching TV, you can get a sense of what authentic language sounds like.

You get accustomed to the real rate of speech of the language. Languages are spoken at different speeds. Proper language learning materials will often slow down the speech so that learners can process what they are hearing more effectively. TV is an excellent way to get used to the regular speed at which native speakers talk.

You can learn colloquialisms and slang. Learners often want to master informal jargon and slang not only to understand native speakers, but also to sound like they “fit in”. TV shows often showcase popular slang at the time the show was produced. Slang is presented in a particular social context, among speakers who are likely to use it. The downside to this is that learners still have to master when and how to use the slang in an acceptable way in their own social circles.

The bad

The grammar and syntax of TV are not always correct. TV may represent authentic language, but let’s face it, the real world is far messier than a textbook. TV is a lousy place to learn proper language structure.

Learners can develop language habits that may cause others to laugh at them. TV characters often develop, in part, due to the way the writers script their characters. Sometimes they are given particular words or sayings that, after many repetitions, will become part of their character’s “brand” (Quick! Who do you think of when you hear, “Bazinga!” or “Beam me up, Scotty” or “D’oh!”) Language learners need to know how to distinguish between what is an accepted part of normal speech and what is peculiar to a particular show or character. If they miss the mark, they may find themselves the object of some ridicule.

The ugly

Frustrations can escalate quickly. Learners may find they become frustrated easily when they can not understand a TV program. This may be more likely to happen if they are watching a show with a group of native speakers or others who are more advanced. For the “Type A” personality who demands nothing short of absolute perfection from themselves, watching TV can be a frustrating experience because until your proficiency levels are high, it is unlikely that you will be able to absorb much of what happens.

My recommendations

Watch the news. Newscasters are trained to speak clearly and articulate their words precisely. They also do not use much slang. If you also follow the news in your native language you may have a sense of what some of the news stories are about, giving you contextual clues that can help you understand what is being said.

Avoid comedies. As much as we may love comedy shows in our native language, they are almost impossible to understand in a foreign languages, unless you are already very proficient. Comedy shows tend to use more slang and colloquialisms, making them harder for a language learner to decipher.

Use subtitles in the target language to help you. The “closed captioning” function of your TV to also project the written script of what is being said. Be aware that this service is not always 100% correct, but reading at the same time you are listening may decrease your frustration levels.

Use subtitles in your native language if you have to. If you are really a beginner and the TV show or movie is completely out of your grasp, then use the translated subtitles if your system allows you to. This is not the ideal situation, but it is preferable to sitting there in complete misery as you try to muddle your way through a program and not understanding a word of it.

Live interaction trumps watching TV – Get out and talk with people. For a language learner (or for anyone, really), social interaction with real, live people is probably a more effective way to develop your language skills. If you do not have access to native speakers in your area, then watching TV is not a bad way to get exposure to authentic language. But real-time face-to-face interaction helps you build both listening and speaking skills simultaneously.

Related post:

Learning to Talk Like Jesus: How TV shows in Sweden support the Aramaic revival in the Middle East –  http://wp.me/pNAh3-1q7

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Share or Tweet this post: Can TV can help you learn another language? http://wp.me/pNAh3-1pI

If you are interested in booking me (Sarah Eaton) for a presentation, keynote or workshop (either live or via webinar) contact me at sarahelaineeaton (at) gmail.com. Please visit my speaking page, too.


Webinar recording: 101 Ways to Market Your Language and Literacy Program (#9)

May 23, 2012

In the eighth of ten webinars today on how to market your language or literacy program we focussed on the power of connections. We talked about

  • Building a system for effective follow-up.
  • What is the best way to follow up with someone – phone, e-mail or some other way?
  • How to use the “drip effect” without torturing the other person.

Here’s the recording of Webinar #9:

Please “like” the YouTube video if you find these recordings helpful!

Join us next week for Class #10. It will social media for marketing and building community. Get more details here.

Related posts:

101 Ways to Market Your Language Program (10 Free webinars) – Program overview and login instructions

#1 Webinar recording

#2 Webinar recording

#3 Webinar recording

#4 Webinar recording

#5 Webinar recording

#6 Webinar recording

#7 Webinar recording

#8 Webinar recording

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Share or Tweet this post: Webinar recording is up! Tips for Marketing Your Language and Literacy Program (#9) http://wp.me/pNAh3-1pB

If you are interested in booking me (Sarah Eaton) for a presentation, keynote or workshop (either live or via webinar) contact me at sarahelaineeaton (at) gmail.com. Please visit my speaking page, too.


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