Pronunciation Tool

The Language Pronunciation and Comprehension Tool (also known as the “ProCommTool”) was developed in collaboration with the Department of French, Hispanic & Italian Studies. It is a web-based application designed to enhance a student’s comprehension and pronunciation of a particular language. Instructors create oral components in any language of their choice, and students practice through a series of listening, speaking, and comprehension exercises. This tool can be used in conjunction with language labs or with language curricula by adding a direct oral component. Additionally, this tool can be easily incorporated into the Connect learning management system.

This tool was designed so that students can repeatedly do these exercises at their own leisure, while being able to immediately receive the correct answer or pronunciation.

How can this tool help me?

In language courses, students often have a difficult time hearing their own pronunciation mistakes, making it challenging for them to determine where improvements can be made. Insufficient class time is another factor that makes it difficult for students to practice their pronunciation. Using the ProComm Tool can overcome this challenge by offering another option that allows students to listen to themselves, compare with the instructor’s recording, listen again, and revise as necessary. Moreover, students have the chance to practice their language skills outside of class.

Advantages

  • Fosters student learning through pronunciation and comprehension exercises that aim to improve students’ language skills over time;
  • Allows students to assess their pronunciation by comparing their own speech with the instructor’s recording;
  • Easily integrates with Connect, allowing students to perform pronunciation and comprehension exercises directly within the learning management system.
  • Authoring tool now available to add, modify, and delete content and audio files within the application.

Limitations

  • Does not support mobile devices;
  • Lacks a tracking tool that checks if students have completed the exercises;

How UBC Arts Instructors Are Using ProComm

To Practice Pronunciation

  1. Student listens to a sentence (pre-recorded by the instructor) in the application.
  2. Student repeats the sentence orally through a microphone.
  3. Student re-listens to the sentence (pre-recorded by the instructor) immediately after.

To Respond to Contextual Questions

  1. Student listens to audio files (pre-recorded by the instructor) in the application that ask them particular context questions.
    • e.g. What time did James arrive home from the airport?
  2. Student answers the question orally through a microphone.
    • e.g. James arrived home from the airport at 6:30.
  3. Student receives the correct answer (pre-recorded by the instructor) immediately after their answer.
    • e.g. James arrived home from the airport at 7:00.

Key Features

  • Text appears in the background as the audio plays;
  • Word-by-word paragraph highlighting synchronized with audio;
  • Immediate comparison between student recording with model answer recording;
  • “Hands-free” practice option for students to autoplay all exercises.
  • Authoring tool available on the instructor’s side for convenient uploading of new exercises.

How does it work?

Instructors create their own oral component by recording their voice using any application that can produce an audio .mp3 file. Instructors will then use the new ProComm Admin Authoring Tool to upload their audio files directly to the application, organizing them by chapters and exercises.

Students are presented with a series of audio sounds in the language they are learning, spoken by a native speaker.  After listening to each sound, the student is recorded speaking the same word or phrase.  The ProComm Tool then replays the voice of the native speaker and the student recording immediately after so the student can compare their pronunciation to that of a native speaker.  Students are able to repeat this for each word or phrase until they are happy with their pronunciation before continuing to the next one.

LC_ProComm

Video Demo

View a demo of the Language Pronunciation tool here.

 

Getting Started

Discuss ideas and options with the Arts Learning Centre Drop by the Arts Learning Centre for a chat in Buchanan C105A
Email Arts ISIT Helpdesk Contact ArtsISIT arts.helpdesk@ubc.ca for assistance or a demonstration!
Ask a questions by filling out the form below! Ask us a question by filling out the form below.

Student Interface

Features of the Student Interface

  1. Introduction text and audio to provide instructions to students.
  2. Text display and audio player so students can match the spoken phrase to written characters.
  3. Drop down lists to select different chapters and exercises to practice.
Demo the Student Interface

Admin Interface

How to Create and Publish a Course

  1. Go to Create Content to create content.
  2. Create a course first.
  3. Add chapters to your course.
  4. Add exercise sets to your chapters.
  5. Go to Manage Content to add exercises to your exercise sets.
  6. When you are ready, publish your course live by going to Publish Course.