an ESADE and IATEFL Computer SIG joint event
"CALL for the 21st Century"

June 30th - July 2nd, 2000, Barcelona, Spain

Community Building Tools
for Online Language Learning

A presentation by Vance Stevens
Amideast Consultant and CALL Coordinator, Military Language Institute

Conference website:
This presentation:
Chat logs from the actual presentation:

The presenter aims to bring together numerous language-oriented teaching and learning communities in a demonstration of how synchronous communication tools freely available on the web can facilitate the formation of such communities, contribute to their cohesiveness, and further their educational goals. Several such communities have been invited to attend this presentation.

The communities are:

  1. Those in attendance at the conference and physically present at the demonstration
  2. The members of the presenter's online class, Writing for Webheads, This purely online and volunteer community of learners and teachers has been together for two years and still ongoing.
  3. The members of a professional listserv recently formed by the presenter and his colleagues online: Teaching for Webheads,
  4. Members of professional lists such as, CALICO-L, NETEACH-L and TESLCA-L, who were sent an invitation to join the presentation (please view the invitation :-)

In addition to this attempt at bringing those not able to physically attend the conference and allowing them to interact synchronously online with real online students and practitioners at the conference, there will be a session on Moos on Saturday, July 1, open to anyone online. Please see:

Plan for this demonstration / workshop

GMT Time in Barcelona What should happen July 2nd ...
Before 9:00 GMT   Vance will set up for the presentation and go online to chat areas
9:00 GMT 11:00 a.m. Gatekeepers are due to convene in the chat areas
    Vance presenting in Barcelona will explain the tools to the audience there and join the chats as he can while Gatekeepers and visitors converse in the chats.
10:30 GMT 12:30 p.m. The presentation and global online conference chat will close

The tools used in this convergence of communities are:

  1. ICQ for finding each other online,; also Yahoo Messenger (find Vance at 2774215 and Vance_Stevens, respectively)
  2. The text chat site at: - This is a browser based chat site, easy to reach, and works fairly well for a broad base of user. It was created simply by starting a web page at, using the web page builder there, and dragging the chat icon onto the page.
  3. The voice chat site at: - This page was created by visiting and registering to receive the code by email. The code was pasted into a Notepad file, saved as html, and stored on the web (later we dressed it up a bit). Anyone can use it by visiting the url using a PC and a 4.0 or better browser (on first visit, you install the plugin and grant the security clearances). You also need a sound card but if you don't have a mic you can interact in the text chat area
  4. The Palace chat site - This is a Palace Viewer chat client available from, and we visit a Virtual Schoolhouse, on port 9998, made available by This has proven to be a highly suitable and enjoyable learning space for our online class members.


We have learned from previous experiences how to better greet visitors, so there should be someone in the chat areas we will use to welcome visitors as they enter. If anyone wants to be a gatekeeper, let me know.

Practice makes perfect

This is optional, but if planning to join us, it might reduce frustration if you try to use the tools beforehand.

There is more information on these materials available from:

For reports of other Webhead events of this nature:

This update: July 23, 2000
Vance's email: