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(C)opyright 2004 Vance Stevens

Enhancing online communities with voice and webcams
Webheads in Action Pre-Convention Institute (PCI) at the annual TESOL Convention, Long Beach
Tuesday, March 30, 2004 from 9 am - 4 pm in Long Beach; 17:00-24:00 GMT


This event turned out to have an ambitious agenda, but it went off without too many hitches, and feedback after the fact has been positive. Special thanks to all online participants who joined us for this event.

Abstract | Participants | Summary | Timetable | Equipment | Notes | References

Participants in this session will experience hands-on use of chat (text only, and voice and webcam enhanced) in safe, educator-friendly online environments. Participants receive information on free software, explore techniques and resources for community-building, create lesson plans for their students, and learn the most appropriate uses of synchronous communication resources for language learning.

Abstract | Participants | Summary | Timetable | Equipment | Notes | References
Aiden | Annavaleria | Buthaina | Chris | Cindy | Dafne | David | Elizabeth | Eric | Gary | Geoffrey | Jeanette | Joseph | Karrie | Kay | Lisa | Maureen | Richard | Vance

Name and picture Introduction and Links
Aiden Yeh

I am lecturer at National Kaohsiung First University of Science and Technology in Southern Taiwan and I teach advanced listening and speaking course, academic and business writing. I received my MSc in ELT Management at Surrey university and am now doing my PhD studies at the University of Birmingham. My research interests are in teacher motivation, teacher professional development, NNS (non-native speaker) teachers in EFL, ELT Management and educational policies and change. I will also be looking at how online communities and online technology can be used for training and enhancing Taiwanese EFL teachers's English language learning and teaching. I am also a member of the TESOL's Electronic Village Online team and was responsible for putting up this year's website: The contents and other aspects of the site are of course products of peer collaboration and team work. Three years ago, I was simply an EFL teacher, but after having joined Vance Steven's Webheads in action, and having learned various tools and online technology that can be applied in traditional classrooms, I have become more than just a teacher. My roles have changed, not to mention my responsibilities and tasks, but most of all, I have learned to teach EFL with a difference. In our PCI, I will be sharing with you some of the successful blended learning projects that my class have participated in, and I hope that you will find them interesting, practical and feasible in your own teaching situations. To know more about me and the projects that I have done and doing, please visit my site at

If you have questions regarding my projects, please don't hesitate to write. I'd be more than happy to talk about them and perhaps we could work on an online project some time in the future:-)

Bye for now and I look forward to meeting you all in Long Beach.

Aiden Yeh

National Kaohsiung First University of Science and Technology, Taiwan

Annavaleria Guazzieri
I am Annavaleria Guazzieri from Italy. I'm a secondary school teacher at the Technical Nautical Institute of Venice, where I teach English. I am on partial secondment at the university of Venice, where I work as a teacher trainer and a teaching practice supervisor. Last november I finished a Master in Educational Technologies with the University of Verona. Before, during and after the Master I worked as an on-line tutor for a variety of post-graduate courses. My Master's dissertation was about foreign language teacher training and virtual communities. Even if I might sound a great expert, I am not, and I have never taken part in a web cam forum.

As for my personal data, I have been teaching for about twenty years, at different levels (I started teaching English as a foreign language teacher at Primary School, then I moved up to Middle School, and now I teach 14-19 year old students as well as post-graduate! I have been involved in teacher training in Italy since 1998, after being granted a British Council Scholarship.

I took part in various ministerial projects aimed at enhancing foreign language learning in Italy. The most recent ones are the Progetto Lingue 2000 (introducing a second foreign language in secondary schools) and an Action-Research Project on language learning, teaching and testing. Last summer I was in the US for my first time with a Fulbright scholarship and I really enjoyed my stay. This will be my first time in California. After Long Beach I will travel to Seattle, where I will meet the members a no-profit maritime educational association, which my school has recently developed a partnership with. They are hosting information about a project on 'Past and present whaling' I am carring out with my students. You can have a glance at a school boat trip in and out the logoon of Venice at

I am looking forward to my second trip to the States and to meeting you all!

Buthaina Al Othman

I am a full time EFL Instructor in the English Language Unit of Science, at Kuwait University. At present, I teach Unified Remedial English course and an ESP, English for Science, upper-intermediate to advanced. I used to be a full time journalist, until I completed my MS program in TESOL at the State University of New York, (The University at Albany), SUNY, in 2000. After that, I participated in several TESOL's Electronic Village Online IS, aiming to improve myself in terms of professional development. Then, in January 2002, Vance Stevens formed and announced his community of practice, (CoP), Webheads in Action, (WiA) and I have been a member, learning from the best, since then. To know more about me and my story on how I joined the CoP, WiA and why am I still with them until this very moment, you are welcome to visit my WiA portfolio at this URL:

I look forward to meet with you all, face-to-face, in Long Beach, next week!

Best regards,


Chris Jones
I'm Chris Jones, and I'm one of the presenters of the PCI. I teach ESL in Yuma, Arizona, at Arizona Western College. However, in my previous life I taught overseas in Egypt, Iran, Nepal, Mexico, Saudi Arabia, and Kuwait. I've been interested in computers since the early 80's when I was happy to use them to type my tests. I currently teach an ESL course in computer basics, and some semesters I teach a course on email and using the Internet.
Cindy Lennox

I am Cindy Lennox, and I'm the Student Services Coordinator at Duquesne University. The title might sound important, but actually my position involves training and supervising student aids and tutors as well as planning student activities. In addition, I have several classes every term. My colleague, Jeanette Clement, has already introduced you to our school. Jeanette, btw, is the "techie" on staff, and I am much less knowledgeable about technology, so this PCI will really be a growing experience for me!

A bit more of personal bio: My background is rather diverse. I started my professional life as a certified secondary ed. teacher in French and English, changed directions to become an ESL instructor and then entered corporate life. In 1987, I became a full-time contractor to a international corporation to provide communication skills, ESL, and cross-cultural training to their employees. That year I started a consulting company which currently provides training in communication skills to non-native and native English speakers. Since 2000, I have also been a full-time faculty member at Duquesne University in the English as a Second Language Program. This dual life usually keep me pretty occupied and out of trouble! (Okay, most of the time, anyway.) Vance, I can't imagine how you manage to squeeze in all your activities.

I am really looking forward to meeting everyone on March 30!


Dafne Gonzales

Welcome to our PCI, I am Dafne Gonzalez, and this is my intro: I have been an EFL, EST and ESP professor for 30 years in Caracas, Venezuela. I have also taught methodology courses in a MSc in an Applied Linguistics Program at Universidad Simon Bolivar, where I am an Associate Professor. I have been involved in online teaching since 2002. I have published articles in different international journals, and have presented at TESOL conferences, and at online and f2f e- learning events. I am an active member of Webheads in Action, and one of my research interests is the use of synchronous web tools for language learning and teacher development. I earned a B.A. in Modern Languages, and a MSc in Applied Linguistics. I am about to "defend" my doctoral dissertation on ESP e-course design and evaluation at Universidad de Valencia, in Spain. I am a member of the editorial board of the ESL Mini Conference Online Magazine, and a member of the TESOL Technology Advisory Committee. I have co-moderated the EVOnline 2004 session Becoming a Webhead, and helped in the training of moderators for these EVO sessions. To learn more about my work, you ca visit my web page at (which has not been updated for a long time) :-(

Sadly, I won't be meeting you f2f, but I will be joining you online from the comfort of my house -I always look at the positive side of things :-) -

In order to warm up for our workshop, I would like to suggest you start building an online presence. How so? Well, how about a simple web page or a blog where you post your pic and some blurb about yourselves? This is optional, but in case you want to give it a try, I have created a bloki with instructions for both, starting a bloki or creating a simple web page. Check it out: Once you have it ready, send us the url.

If you have questions or comments, contact me.

Cheers, Dafne (Daf)

David Brown

I'm a graduate student at California State University, Long Beach. How nice that I won't have to travel for TESOL ths year. I'm currently participating in the new M.A. Program in Educational Technology here.

Although I've been teaching/tutoring ESL/EFL online for a few years, I'm largely self-taught, and I still have a lot to learn. That doesn't seem strange because how could I teach myself something that I didn't know to begin with?

I've been participating in the BaW workshop since January. Thanks to Daf, Sus, Tere, and Maria (our wonderful moderators) I've moved a step in the right direction, but I wasn't able to be as active as I'd hoped to be. I hope to rectify that with the TESOL PCI in Long Beach.

I look forward to meeting you and the other moderators and participants then.



Elizabeth Hanson-Smith

I'm a member of the design team for Live Action English Interaction and Live Action Spanish, which just came out this spring , and I was lead designer of the Codie-nominee, Oxford Picture Dictionary Interactive on CD. Back in a previous life, I was Coordinator and co-founder of the graduate TESOL program at CSU, Sacramento. Presently I work mainly online as an educational technology consultant, software writer, and author. I've also conducted f2f teacher training workshops in the U.S. and overseas, including considerable experience in China, Russia, Belize, Sri Lanka, Puerto Rico, and Egypt. I've has been a Featured Speaker at TEXTESOL and CATESOL,and a presenter at the TESOL Academy in Seattle. Recent publications include, with Joy Egbert,_ CALL Environments: Research, Practice, Issues_ (TESOL, 1999); and _Technology-Enhanced Learning Environments_ in the TESOL Case Studies series (2000). For more on my articles, presentations, and other Yahoo Group collaborations, check out the Website (currently still partially under construction) at I'm a moderator in two communities of practice (which you'll hear more about later): Real English Online for video-using teachers , and Academic Writing for composition teachers and classroom collaborations.

On a personal note:

I am crazy about using computers and cyberspace, but like to think of myself as "trailing edge"--how does one make best use of free or nearly free technologies, especially on older or cheaper computers? When not conversing with cyberpals around the globe, I enjoy gardening, free diving, tennis, golf, cooking, and traveling with my husband and best friend, Jack Thompson (see photo of us in Napa Valley on the Wine Train in the PHOTOS area). That same Website will eventually have a link to photos of our favorite locations: Marathon in the Florida Keys, and our backyard garden.

I'm really looking forward to meeting you all in person and spending a most productive day with you exploring some exciting online options.

Elizabeth's husband Jack was in town and intended to come along and provide technical support during our session.

Eric Farber

I live in Manhattan. I've read many of your intros, and compared to most of you, I'm a TESOL newcomer. Last year, my wife Kay and I studies TESOL at the New School I¹m Eric Farber and I live in Manhattan. I¹ve read many of your intros, and compared to most of you, I¹m a TESOL newcomer. Last year, my wife Kay and I studied TESOL at the New School University. During that program and since receiving our certificates, we¹ve taught briefly in several ESL/EFL programs in New York and Prague. Two months from now we expect to move to Turkey where we¹ll teach adults at the Inlingua School in Istanbul.

Although new to the profession, both of us spent many years in other careers. My own was in corporate communications where I produced hundreds of films, videos, meetings, training programs, press conferences and trade show exhibits for diverse corporate clients.

Finally, our only experience with computer-mediated teaching was as students (We took one on-line course at the New School. ) My expectation from this upcoming PCI is to learn about a new dimension in TESOL practice, and I¹m looking forward to meeting and learning from such a highly qualified group of experienced teachers. See you on the 30th.

Gary Carkin

I have been out straight for the past few weeks since the absolutely awesome "Becoming a Webhead" session ended. Please forgive my silence. That workshop was great and I'm looking to follow up and extend my understanding of these wonderful technical tools and develop more ease in using them.

I guess the best and most efficient means of introduction is to refer back to what I posted on my work with webheads. A short and to the point website is found at:

A long "in-process" website is found at

And for a bio, check at (About Us)

Briefly, I teach high intermediate students in our IEP at the Center for Language Education, Southern New Hampshire University in Manchester, NH. I also teach Methods of Second Language Acquisition and Pronunciation Techniques in our M.S. TEFL program.

I am looking forward to meeting everyone and learning more at the PCI in Long Beach!

Geoffrey Lawrence

My background is in ESL/TESL and English along with private school management/marketing. I currently work for a Japanese-based institution that provides customized, industry-specific corporate language and intercultural training programs to companies/professionals.

I have an MA in Second Language Education with a specialization in technology-enhanced language learning from OISE/UT in Toronto. I have always been fascinated with the potential use of technology - computers/Net/video to enhance language learning and learning communities. I will likely be beginning my doctorate in the fall focusing on the development of cross-cultural language learning communities through the Web - hence my interest in this workshop.

Unfortunately, I'm extremely busy right now at work and have little spare time to devote to participation in pre-workshop activities. I am currently working with Industry Canada on the development of a Language Industry Technology Roadmap which is proving to be fascinating and all-encompassing work!

Nevertheless, I do plan to see what I can glean from this preliminary work that's going on and thank you all for setting up what appears to be a great venue for learning in this area.

Geoff created:

Gerald Landers Hi folks: My name is Gerry Landers. I hail from Atlanta originally. I am now teaching ESL at Auburn Univ. in Auburn, Alabama. I have studied Spanish and Japanese as an exchange student and that path led to a Masters in Applied Linguistics/TESL from Georgia State Univ. which I finished in December 2002. In my position at Auburn I teach in the IEP where I teach all levels of grammar, reading as well as listening/speaking classes. I also teach international teaching assistants in graduate programs from all kinds of departments on campus. The courses I teach are in this role are a teaching/classroom skills course for the American universtity format for those who are new to the American university environment. We also teach a listening speaking course for this audience as well as an academic writing course for them. I am relatively new to the ESL teaching commuinty comparatively speaking, but I am excited about the way the technologies available to us now can enhance the experiences we provide for our students.
James Chang
Jeanette Clement

I'm Jeanette Clement, Curriculum and Learning Technologies Coordinator for Duquesne University's ESL Program. A rather fancy sounding title, don't you think? I really do coordinate our overall curriculum, and I greatly enjoy playing with technology! It's amazing how the techie part of my position tends to take over, devouring as much time as I can give to it and always demanding more! I'm nearly half way through a doctoral program in Instructional Technology at Duquesne, and eventually, I'd like to direct an ESL Program that's invested in the benefits of instructional technology, perhaps even a distance learning program.

Ours is a rather small ESL Program at a Catholic University in Pittsburgh, PA. We currently provide a small (wired) computer lab for our students' use, as a classroom/self-access center. In addition, we have a portable wireless lab - with 15 laptops, a projector and a printer - that travels from classroom to classroom and has become very popular with our instructors and students alike. Our ancient 22 station Sony cassette lab is in dire need of replacing, and we are currently working on acquiring the new Sony digital lab. We're waiting for the blessing of our provost and keeping fingers crossed! The old one - late 80's vintage - is on its absolute last legs! Many of our instructors include a Blackboard component to their courses, but very few use it for much more than as a repository for course info. We have a long way to go in using technology, but many of the instructors are open to possibilities.

I'm very excited about the PCI on enhancing online communities with voice and webcams (I don't yet own one!). I'm hoping to bring back to our program some great new ideas. My colleague, Cindy Lennox, will also take part in this PCI, and together, we hope to light a fire under (particularly) our instructors of speaking/listening to do more with the many technologies readily available to us.

Looking forward to seeing you all in Long Beach! where Jeanette made:

Joseph Dias
I'm an Associate Professor in the Dept. of Literature and co-coordinator of the Integrated English Program [described at] at Aoyama Gakuin University in Tokyo. This is a position that I started one year ago. Before that, I taught at a medical university in Kanagawa Prefecture for nearly 14 years. Unlike, most of the members of our group who have travelled far and wide in their work, all of my professional experience has been here in Japan, which has been my home for half my life. By the way, the cherry blossoms are due a few weeks early this year and some early bloomers can already be seen here and there. They're not 'supposed to' appear until the start of the new school year. Well, at least the bullet train keeps to its schedule.

Information tech has been playing an increasingly big role in my classes and research interests since the early 90's. The presence of a brilliant and wonderful blind student in one of my seminars last year has made me re-evaluate how course content can be delivered and made accessible to everyone--despite disabilities or environmental constraints.

It may have been good that the administration hadn't prepared me for the presence of this student at all because I had no time to put together what might have been 'dumbed down' materials for her based on my preconceptions of what blind people were capable of. What I found, was a student who was able to use email very well and, after some initial assistance, could participate on a YahooGroup that I had set up for our class and later on a public YahooGroup dealing with the ailment that caused her blindness as an infant-- a group that she chose to join to fulfill one of the class requirements. [This was done on her own outside of class time.] Somehing else that I hadn't expected was that she got a lot out of the videos I showed in class despite being totally blind. Not only did she attend keenly to the audio and catch things that others in the class didn't, but she also got enjoyment out of them and was the only student to ask if she could take home movies to hear them in their entirety.

Anyway, to make a long story short, my interest in this PCI is to find out about tools that can appeal to as many modalities as possible--for both the few students I'll have with disabilities and the majority who may be able to get some benefit from redundant--or at least-- non-essential (but nifty)--channels.

Clear skies,
Joseph Dias
Sagamihara City, Japan

Karrie Schlundt

Hi Everyone. It's nice to hear from you and get to know you a little before the conference. My name is Karrie Schlundt and I'm currently living in Miami, Florida. Just a little background: I've been teaching ESL for 9 years, the first 3 being in Alexandria, Egypt teaching adults - a truly amazing experience. I then came back to the States and spent a year working in Sarasota and Bradenton, FL working at 2 different community colleges teaching ESL to teenagers and adults. Then for the last 4 years I worked in Fort Lauderdale, FL at the Florida Language Center, which is a private language school for adult learners. I was the Assistant Director of Studies there where I got to teach as well as direct so I was able to learn all aspects of how a language school works.

Now in Miami, I've started my own small school called Total Immersion English where I do lessons at a small office or on-site at the student's office or home. At the office I have internet available for students' use, and many multimedia CD programs for English learning, i.e. Focus on Grammar and Azar CDs for grammar, New Oxford Picture Dictionary and a couple other dictionary CDs for vocab practice and Cambridge TOEFL for practice tests.

Last year, I took a 5-week online course offered by Emily Lites and BizEnglish about teaching on-line. We critiqued other ESL websites available for students, learned how to create our own simple website, and learned about different course management software, course tools, exercise creation software, and voice recording software. It helped open up many doors for me and gave me lots of new ideas. I'm taking this PCI at TESOL for several reasons: to brush up and enhance what I already learned, and to teach on-line both in the classroom for now and then in the future to do distant teaching. This class will also motivate me to learn more about the internet in general. And finally, my husband is Colombian and is still learning English. He loves the internet and I hope to experiment with him to see what works for us.

Looking forward to seeing all of you in a few weeks.

Karrie made

Kay Farber I'm Kay Farber. You may have already read the intro my husband, Eric, sent recently so I won't go into a discussion about our planned move to Istanbul to teach EFL. (I'm sad about leaving New York City after our 25 years here, but am also happy about experiencing life away from the USA for awhile.) As Eric said, we're fairly new to the teaching profession. During my previous career, I was a communication consultant at a major human resources consulting firm. There I worked for a variety of corporate clients, writing and producing employee communication programs and developing and conducting training programs. I've continued my working relationship with one of my former clients, writing for print and the Web.

I'm really looking forward to our session on Tuesday. Trying to get prepared for this session has shown me just how much I need to learn. Let's just say that at this point, I am in no way a Web-head.

See you all soon!

Lisa Hima
I am attending this session in representation of my Slovak colleagues who are unable to attend the convention due to a shortage of funds. My role is to acquire as much information as possible about the use of different type of technologies that can be used in the language classroom to supplement language instruction and then pass it on to my Slovak colleagues this summer during our semi- annual military teacher training seminar.

I have been working for the Defense Language Institute English Language Center at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, TX for at least 15 years. For the last four years I have been working at the Ministry of Defense in the Slovak Republic in the capacity of advisor in matters of language training and teacher trainer.

Lisa created a blog at the PCI:

Maureen Archer
President Professional English, Inc., Newport News, VA

My introduction is late, but for a happy reason: my business is growing rapidly. I started Professional English, Inc., five years ago, essentially leaving academia (as a professor of English) and jumping into the business world. From humble beginnings in a windowless office, I now have an office suite, an assistant, and nine trainers on staff. We provide English training to native and non- native English speakers through individual coaching, workshops, and workplace classes. To learn more about Professional English, please visit our website:

I'm eager to attend this PCI because the technology of education is changing so rapidly and I don't want to be left behind. I'm looking forward to learning from the panelists as well as from the participants.
Mustafa Hurses

My name is Mustafa Hurses and I am joining you from North Cyprus. As mentioned before I had a great time in Long Beach and has been a pleasure meeting you all. I did 5 years of teaching at the Eastern Mediterranean University teaching adults and prepared them for the proficiency exam. I did one year of Colleague Mentor and one year of Teaching Team Leader. Also I was the assistant resource leader for 3 years of the testing office at the University. I have been teaching English at a state school for two years plus I have been working as a part time interpreter at the British High Commission since 2000.

Richard Boyum

This is Richard Boyum - I'm the Regional English Language Officer for the US Embassy in Bangkok. As such I work for the Office of English Language Programs of the Bureau of Educationa and Cultural Affairs of the US State Department. That's a mouthful, I know. We were formerly USIA, which some of you may know. Anyway, I'm based in Bangkok doing English language programming for our embassies in Thailand, Burma, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. We have a variety of things going, from visiting American EFL academics, to EFL curriculum revision for Universities, students online in English for secondary schools, support for Thai TESOL and its conferences and workshops, and sponsoring "English Language Fellows" at universities or training centers.

My background is in EFL, starting out as a Peace Corps English Teaching Volunteer and then later doing my MA in TEFL and Bilingual Ed at Georgetown. I subsequently managed some classroom teaching, training and program administration in West Africa, Brazil, Middle East and now Asia. I've always been interested in the role technology can play in EFL and helped get some early online collaboration going in Brasilia in the early 90's. Lately I've been doing workshops and consulting on web resources for EFL teachers and learners.

So the PCI on voice and webcams is just what the doctor ordered. Access to the Internet is spreading fast in the countries I serve and the bandwith is getting better. I'm sure I'll be able to make use of what we learn in the workshop. Looking forward to meeting all of you.

I've got a Yahoo login and address so looking forward to info on the Yahoo Group.


Vance Stevens

Hi I'm Vance. I'm another of the presenters of the PCI. In 1997 I got together with a couple other online teachers and started the Webheads projects. At first we worked with students but once we got through the sound barrier with voice chat we started involving teachers more and more to the point where I'm now mainly focused on teacher professional development and training teachers and teacher-trainers in community formation and computer-mediated communication techniques. This PCI is but the tip of an iceberg in that overall movement. To get a better picture of the iceberg, check this out:

You can get to know me and my family here: or me more professionally here.

Abstract | Participants | Summary | Timetable | Equipment | Notes | References

Language Teachers around the world are incorporating online components into their classes to offer students opportunities to interact authentically with speakers of the target language. This session will help teachers improve skills needed to meet this challenge by providing opportunities to experience voice and webcam enhanced chat hands-on.

In this PCI, practitioners with experience in a wide range of chat modalities will introduce a rationale for use of chat by presenting case studies providing evidence of the value of chat and its compatibility with curriculum goals. Theory will be discussed after participants have had opportunities to explore ways to use chat with peers online and have some idea of its potential for use with students.

The main objectives of this PCI are:

  • Familiarize participants with a modest level of technology (e.g.Tapped In) and show how easy it is to interact with nearby and remote participants in text-based chat augmented with voice and webcam (e.g. using Wimba and Yahoo Messenger).
  • Extrapolate from interactions with peers in a professional development context to pedagogical advantages of using media-enhanced chat with students.
  • Raise awareness of the importance of developing a sense of solidiarity among students online using community building techniques involving use of images and voices, with YahooGroups as a example of a community portal.
  • Help participants devise projects that can be implemented on return to work/school. Participants will work in groups to develop such projects utilizing chats in their classes.

Presenters will show example class projects to demonstrate a wide range of potentials for exploitation of chat in language learning. Students and teachers enjoy participating in the projects, meeting other students and educators online, and entering an environment that fosters community support and out-of-class language development.

Hands-on activities include:

  • using voice and webcams in chatting with online partners worldwide,
  • creating or joining YahooGroups,
  • and preparing photos and sound files for upload to shared web space.

Handouts will be distributed detailing resources for further exploration and practice utilizing synchronous CMC tools in the context of developing effective and productive communities of practice devoted to language learning.

(346 words)

Abstract | Participants | Summary | Timetable | Equipment | Notes | References

Dafne Gonzales is organizing the online participants and has set up a sign-up page for this event here:

Part I: Introducing the tools we use, and familiarization

17:00-17:30 GMT
09:00-09:30 in Long Beach
Topic Intros and Ice-breaker (small groups reporting to whole-group)
Objective Start on developing sense of community within group to facilitate conditions for scaffolding, get comfortable asking questions

Get settled/set up, introduce ourselves and get people to say who they are and what they use CMC for currently (or why they want to in future).

Prior preparation, something along the lines of


Plan and schedule for the workshop is introduced (the one you see here).

Following on interaction among participants prior to the PCI, we can view participants' introductions and blogs (try at least step 1 below). Those whom we haven't met can write out an intro to say who they are and what they use CMC for currently or why they want to in future before the session starts, like when they come in the door, give them instructions to do that. We'll save these to a blog which we create on the spot so by now we'll all be up on the Internet somewhere. You can read up on blogging here, and below:

  1. Here you can Learn how to create a blog in Blogger (md9i) and post to it
  2. For more advanced practice: learn how to change the template to put your own photos and links on your blog
  3. For reference, try Vance's HTML tutorial here.

Participants among us will be taking photos. One of the facilitators, any of us, can start a Geocities or Tripod site under the name pci2004enhancing and leave it 'up' on that computer, and we can be uploading pics to the site in order to give each a URL, which we can use later.

17:30-18:00 GMT
09:30-10:00 in Long Beach

Topic How we use chat (brief presentations by two or three presenters)
Objective Introduce rationale for use of chat inductively through preview of example case studies, so that participants can be aware of evidence of the value of chat before embarking on these sessions, and see that our presenters are experienced with applying the tools we will show creatively. Another purpose of this section is to dispel notion that chat is frivolous and establish that it can fit in well with curriculum goals.
Activity Several of our presenters have engaged students in creative online chat projects, richly documented on the Internet. The presenters will introduce themselves and their projects, and invite participants to turn to their computers and follow along online. These presentations include case studies and documentation of communities of practice for both professional development and language learning which participants can explore at greater leisure later.

As presenter's projects will be shown in greater depth later in the session, this is simply a preview. The idea here is to establish perspective and credibility as well as foster an atmosphere conducive to scaffolding in the first hour of the session. After that participants can be online and engaged in interacting through chat enabled computers.


18:00-18:45 GMT
10:00-10:45 in Long Beach
Topic Text Chat with Tapped In (hands on)
Objective Get participants familiar with a modest level of technology in the form of Tapped In and show how easy it is to interact with nearby and remote participants in text based chat. Extrapolate from interactions with peers in a professional development context to pedagogical goals in focused chat with students.
Activity Introduction to text chat via Tapped In and Yahoo Messenger (YM). Participants go to their different computers (ideally each to his/her own, but pairs at computers would work too). With presenter guidance they log on to Tapped In and go to their assigned areas (e.g. presenters' offices). Their task on arrival is to interview each other for 15 min in order to then turn away from the computers and report back to the group on anything of interest they found out about each other, and also introduce any remote participants found online during the exercise. They might also comment on any differences in interviewing each other through chat as opposed to doing it face to face in small groups.

Elizabeth has made an html page with pictures for the TI directions and placed it in the pci2004enhancing FILES area:
(You must log on as a member of the Yahoo Group pci2004enhancing to view Elizabeth's presentation.)
Notes Remote participants will be invited members of the online Webheads community of practice joining us from all over the world. We can usually rely on such participation at special online events such as this one.
18:45-19:00 GMT
10:45-11:00 in Long Beach
Break Participants will be informed (if they haven't caught wind already through the YGroups) that the next activity will require someone at their computer to have a Yahoo ID (they will have been asked to have obtained one before coming to the PCI either through the EVOnline session, or email to registered participants beforehand. Many participants can be expected to have a Yahoo ID anyway.
Alternately Anyone who doesn't already have a Yahoo ID, or who isn't activated in the pci2004enhancing group, or who needs a password for TI or any of the other communities, or who wants to start a blog for the purpose of greater involvement in the next activities can be helped during this break.
19:00-19:30 GMT
11:00-11:30 in Long Beach
Topic Introduction to community building (presentation)
Objective Inculcate notion that sense of community can be fostered through use of easy to use, free interfaces to create online portals for students

The presenter will introduce the importance of developing a sense of community among online groups, as well as provide details on easy ways to set up web sites or web presences . Techniques for doing this include blogging and YahooGroups.

Other communities will be included in the discussion:

There is a description of all the above communities here:

Notes Chris has created some instructions for ...
19:30-20:00 GMT
11:30-12:00 in Long Beach

Topic Voice and video conferencing using Alado and Yahoo Messenger (presentation and hands on)
Objective Get participants familiar with a higher level of technology by showing how easy it is to interact with nearby and remote participants in voice and web-cam activated text chats using the conferencing features of Alado and Yahoo Messenger (YM). Extrapolate from interactions with peers in a professional development context to pedagogical advantages of using media-enhanced chat with students.

Voice chatting at the Alado site is pretty straightforward, but we are using an Alado beta product whose free availability is perpetually in doubt, so there needs to be a brief explanation of voice and video with YM. Vagaries of contacting each other via Yahoo ID and conferencing using YM need to be anticipated. Voice chat requires mention of mic adjustment and troubleshooting, which can be explained in a few minutes and then monitored by presenters as the activity unfolds.

Hands on: participants will contact each other online using voice and video, and locate, talk to, and observe any remote participants joining us. Activities can include:

  1. identify an unusual mystery background noise and after speculation on its source have it revealed on web cam;
  2. enjoy a rotated web cam tour of remote location premises;
  3. info gap activities where answers depend on view in webcam; or construct such an exercise for online participants viewing our webcam(s).

Here we can start anticipating here how participants might themselves prepare lesson plans utilizing text, voice, and video enabled CMC tools in synchronous chat. Last 15 minutes of this activity participants will be brought back into whole-group mode (facing away from computers) to report and discuss results of experimentations.

As well as explaining what participants need to know about YM, our handout will detail other options to voice and video besides Yahoo Messenger. These can be discussed, and other chats shown briefly to any of the participants wishing to experiment during the hands on time. We will also need to explain mic adjustment and troubleshooting.


Notes If there are only two or three webcams, then these can pan different groups, each broadcast through a different person's Yahoo ID. If each workstation has a webcam then anyone with a Yahoo ID can broadcast, and participants should also be able to see webcams of remote participants. However, YM tends to crash when overloaded, so ...
20:00-21:00 GMT
12:00-13:00 in Long Beach
Lunch Break During lunch, presenters will photograph participants with digital cameras and have photo files ready for afternoon activities.
Alternately As chat lines will be open and familiar to online participants by now, some participants in these sessions may wish to explore further the tools introduced so far, create blogs, or experiment with other chat environments mentioned in the handouts.

Part II: How do we justify using this with students? Becoming aware of pedagogical justifications for online community creation

We will in our presentations overview salient points, drawing on our experiences in and reflections on our Webheads in Action EVOnline sessions, as well as PhD studies of communities of practice in general (and Webheads specifically) conducted by Webheads members John Steele and Chris Johnson. Of particular value in this presentation are websites where Webheads members have documented benefits from learning through scaffolding in a constructivist online environment utilizing synchronous and asynchronous CMC tools.

Some examples:

There follow four presentations wherein the community builders among us describe their projects.

21:00-21:10 GMT
13:00-13:10 in Long Beach
Topic Community building continued - how Dafne does it (presentation)
Objective Familiarity with socialization process in an online environment; show through example how a web presence can be created to give students sense of pride, ownership, and community

Dafne will use the BaW portal page mainly, and then for the hands on discussion on "why use chat with students", she has created a Web page as a starting point for discussion. This page can be updated after the event using participants own ideas:


There are many other examples, such as bravenet map tool, etc. Our handouts will document samples of our work that we might not present due to time constraints and desire to involve participants with as much hands-on as possible.

Other resources:

21:10-21:30 GMT
13:10-13:30 in Long Beach
Topic Community building continued - how Elizabeth does it (presentation)
Objective Familiarity with socialization process in an online environment; show through example how a web presence can be created to give students sense of pride, ownership, and community

REO and Academic Writing, my new group, which has collaborations with Aiden and with Buth, so it's a nice international display, and on a topic that might be very appealing. It is also an offshoot of REO, so it shows how one group, which came out of JoAnn Miller's Internet for Beginners last year, leads to another--REO-- which leads to another in Academic Writing.

21:30-21:50 GMT
13:30-13:50 in Long Beach
Topic Community building in blended environments - how Aiden does it (presentation)
Objective Familiarity with socialization process in an online environment; show through example how a web presence can be created to give students sense of pride, ownership, and community

This presenter shows the best of her class projects developing sense of community; e.g.

Notes It will be evident from viewing these projects that chat has many potentials for exploitation in language learning, and that students and teachers enjoy participating in these projects and meeting other students and educators online, and that they enter an environment that enjoys community support and fosters out-of-class language development.
21:50-22:10 GMT
13:50-14:10 in Long Beach
Topic Community building in the Blended Environment - how Vance does it (presentation and hands on)
Objective Understanding goals of community building process; show techniques for use with students that help them get to know each other in an online environment

The presentation will elaborate on techniques for helping people know each other through pictures (a little bit on image manipulation, cropping, resizing) and recorded voice (Windows sound recorder, Wimba email, PureVoice). As a hands-on activity, participants will upload photos made earlier in the session to the community YahooGroup. They can also create a sound file and store it in the files area of that YahooGroup. The more experimental participants can create and send Wimba voice mail or PureVoice files by email, or put pictures of themselves on their blogs. Handouts will detail photo manipulation techniques as well as options for creating and sending voice across communities synchronously and asynchronously.




There isn't time to accomplish all that is set out here! This will be a very rough overview of where to go for further information and practice later in this session.

22:10-22:55 GMT
14:00-14:45 in Long Beach
Topic Why use chat with students (hands on)
Objective Explore arguments pros/cons and pitfalls/advantages of using synchronous CMC with students. Exercise and develop skills in what has been learned in working in a synchronous online environment
Activity Participants meet in small group CMC tool of choice (offices at TI or Alado or Learning Times voice or YM voice/text conference - or as we often do, a combination of these) to discuss pedagogical uses of CMC with on-site and online participants and record findings. The groups should be "mixed ability," including both novices and those currently using CMC. Participants gather ideas from each other and interpret these in context of what they are learning from practice working with topics online. In the last 15 min. of this activity participants face away from computers and report back from each group their list of reasons for using CMC with language students as well as possible drawbacks and how they might be faced.
Notes Can optionally break after 20 min or continue chat to end of half hour. Elizabeth notes: "the theory part can come through the chat itself, eh? This is what we did in the mini-presentation at CATESOL. I posed the question "why use chat with students," and Daf and Sus picked up the ball and ran with it. So we have even rehearsed the routine."
22:55-23:10 GMT
14:45-15:00 in Long Beach
Break For those that need it
Alternately Continue chatting or Start working on the Project Development phase or both
23:10-23:30 GMT
15:00-15:20 in Long Beach
Topic Project development (brainstorming in small groups)
Objective Help participants come up with projects that could be implemented on return to work/school
Activity Participants can work in a mode they feel most comfortable with. Some might wish to sit in small groups with one or more presenters. Others might by now want to discuss via the online chat forums with other participants, presenters, and remote guests. In whatever mode is most comfortable and productive for them, this activity allows time for brainstorming and planning and initial set-up for their respective projects. Last 15 min the groups come together to report on their plans.

Arlyn comments: "I'm not sure how productive we can really be in getting people to create lesson plans in this environment. More likely participants will ask questions related to how they can adapt the activities shown to their personal situations/populations, given the equipment/limitations available to them. So we'll be offering creative problem-solving ..."

23:30-23:50 GMT
15:20-15:40 in Long Beach

Objective Project development (reports from groups)
Activity Participants report back to group
23:50-24:00 GMT
15:40-16:00 in Long Beach
Topic Closure and continuity
Objective Wind down on charged note and suggest ways of proceeding with community online after session ends

We will recap the advantages of pursuing both language learning and professional development as a member of a community of practice. The Webheads projects will be used as examples, which leads to an invitation to continue working with the presenters through these communities using the tools just learned. Our online portal and Yahoo Group, which can be augmented during the session itself, will act as a 'handout' giving details and sources for further exploration and practice utilizing synchronous CMC tools in the context of an effective and productive community of practice.

Notes For comparison, wrapping up the recent TESOL Online Academy 'Enhancing' session:

Abstract | Participants | Summary | Timetable | Equipment | Notes | References

Presenters will bring presentation computers with Ethernet cards and expect to configure them to LAN, and expect that firewall should allow delivery each way of voice and video enabled chat packets. Participants will also need IBM computers in any LAN networked computer lab configuration. We also requested additional microphones, a white (dry ink) board, an IBM compatible LCD projector,

[X] IBM base system: IBM compatible (3.5 in.) Pentium/200 MHz, 32 MB RAM, Windows 95, mouse, and color monitor with CD ROM
[X] Other: Please specify. Fees will be indicated in the invitation to present
The specifications on the above computers are obsolete. 64 meg minimum (would be slow) with 128 meg RAM preferred, Windows 98 or 2000 or XP. Computers should be equipped with headsets (headphones, mic in one unit). Video cam installed on each computer or at minimum some computers would help presenters accomplish objectives, though we can still do it without webcams provided by TESOL (we'd have to bring our own web cams and install them to lab computers)

Software required: IE6 browser and Internet access, Yahoo Messenger, MSN Messenger, PureVoice
PureVoice was written in on the hard copy of the Professional Development Proposal Form which was faxed to TESOL office but never received May 1, 2003. It was not included in the Word version of the file sent to Lou Leto by email on the same day

Abstract | Participants | Summary | Timetable | Equipment | Notes | References

Notes on further development:

Abstract | Participants | Summary | Timetable | Equipment | Notes | References

Almeida d'Eca, T. (2004a). Webheads in Action (WiA): An online community for professional development – from past to present. Humanising Language Teaching, Vol. 6, No. 1. Retrieved March 29, 2004 from

Almeida d'Eca, T. (2004b). Cybersites - Webheads in Action: Communities of practice online (Vance Stevens). Essential Teacher: ESL/EFL.reflections.practice, Spring 2004. p. 50.

Alothman, Buthaina. (2003). How participation in a CoP informs and influences personal teaching. Retrieved March 29, 2004 from

Alothman, Buthaina. (2004). First live webcast of project by students (2003-2004). Retrieved March 29, 2004 from

Bonk, C. and Cunningham, D. (1998). Searching for learner-centered, constructivist, and sociocultural components of collaborative educational learning tools. In C. Bonk & K. King (Eds.), Electronic Collaborators: Learner-centered technologies for literacy, apprenticeship, and discourse (pp. 25-50). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. Retrieved March 29, 2004, from:

Coghlan, M. Welcome to Michael Coghlan's website. Retrieved March 29, 2004 from:

Dieu, Barbara. (Feb 2004). Blogging and Presence Online. Retrieved March 29, 2004 from:

Egbert, J. (2000). T&L 472 Technology for Language Learning. Retrieved March 29, 2004 from:

Egbert, J. (2001). Active learning through computer-enhanced activities. Teaching English with Technology Vol. 1, Issue 3 (May 2001). Retrieved March 29, 2004 from:

Gallagher, C. (n.d.). Lev Semyonovich Vygotsky (1896 - 1934): Biography, Theory, Time Line, Bibliography. Retrieved March 29, 2004, from:

González, D. (2003). Teaching and learning through chat: A taxonomy of educational chat for EFL/ESL. Teaching English with Technology, Vol. 3, No. 4 (October 2003). Retrieved March 29, 2004 from

Healey, D. (2001). Are Technology-Using Students Better Learners? Article form of presentation webcast at the Teacher to Teacher Conference: The Process of Language Learning, held in Abu Dhabi November 6-7, 2001. Retrieved March 29, 2004, from:

Johns, T. (2000). Tim Johns Data-driven Learning Page. Retrieved March 29, 2004 from

Johnson, C. (2003a). CoP Theory Overview. Retrieved March 29, 2004, from:

Johnson, C. (2003b). Annotated Bibliography: Web version. Communties of practice bibliography created for Webheads in Action EVOnline sessions. Retrieved March 29, 2004, from:

Johnson, C. (2003c). Establishing an Online Community of Practice for Instructors of English as a Foreign Language: A formal proposal submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirement of Doctor of Philosophy Graduate School of Computer and Information Sciences Nova Southeastern University. Retrieved March 29, 2004 from:

Mynard, J. (2002a). Introducing EFL Students to Chat Rooms. The Internet TESL Journal, Vol. VIII, No. 2, February 2002. Retrieved March 29, 2004 from

Mynard, J. (2002b). Making Chat Activities with Native Speakers Meaningful for EFL Learners. The Internet TESL Journal, Vol. VIII, No. 3, March 2002. Retrieved March 29, 2004 from

Ryder, M. (2002). Constructivism (University of Colorado at Denver, School of Education. Retrieved March 29, 2004, from:

Sanders, D. (2002). EFI - English Language for Internet with Webheads. In Learning from the innovators: Internet Communication Technologies Changing Business Practices, Issue two (2/3) ICT’s in different cultural contexts: 29 August, 2002. Retrieved March 29, 2004, from:,0

Snyder, E. (n.d.). CoPs (Communities of practice). inc. Training and Development Community Center. Retrieved February 15, 2004, from:

Steele, J. (2002). Herding cats: A descriptive case study of a virtual language learning community. Dissertation submitted to the Graduate School and Research, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in English. Retrieved February 15, 2004, from:

Stevens, V. 1992. Humanism and CALL: A coming of age. In Pennington, Martha, and Vance Stevens (Eds.). Computers in applied linguistics: An international perspective. Clevedon, England: Multilingual Matters, pp. 11-38. Retrieved February 15, 2004, from:

Stevens, V. and Altun, A. (2002). The Webheads community of language learners online. In Syed, Z. (Ed.). The process of language learning: An EFL perspective. Abu Dhabi: The Military Language Institute. pp. 285-318.. Pre-publication draft retrieved February 15, 2004, from:

Stevens, V. 2002. A day in the life of an online language educator. TESL-EJ 6, 3. Retrieved February 17, 2004 from:

Stevens, V. (2003). Teacher professional development in online communities of practice: How does this impact language learning? An online presentation made December 18, 2003 webcast to the CALL (Computer-Assisted Language Learning) Symposium, Cairo, Egypt. Retrieved February 13, 2004 from:

Stevens, V. (2004a). WFW: Writing for Webheads You can chat with us live, online, free. Retrieved February 17, 2004, from:

Stevens, V. (2004b). The Skill of Communication: Technology brought to bear on the art of language learning. Plenary address for the 9th EFL Conference: "Integrating EFL Skills: Strategies for The Teacher, Creativity and Assessment" at The American University of Cairo, Egypt, Wednesday January 21, 2004. Retrieved March 4, 2003 from:

Stevens, V. (2004c). Tech view: Tools for building online communities. Essential Teacher: ESL/EFL.reflections.practice, Spring 2004. pp. 32-35. A draft version of this article can be found online here:

Warschauer, M. and D. Healey. (1998). Computers and language learning: An overview. Language Teaching, 31, 57-71. Retrieved February 13, 2004 from

Wenger, E. (1998) Communities of practice Learning as a social system. Retrieved February 15, 2004, from:

Yeh, A. (n.d.). NKFUST's listening and conversation class with Michael Coghlan. Retrieved March 29, 2004 from:

Yeh, A. (2003). Telling true stories: Blending multi-media in a task-based activity. In IATEFL Poland Computer Special Interest Group's Teaching English with Technology: A Journal for Teachers of English, ISSN 1642-1027, Vol. 3, Issue 4 (October 2003), Internet Lesson Plans column. Retrieved March 29, 2004 from:

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Last updated: April 17, 2004 in Hot Metal Pro 6.0