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Transforming the Economics of Language Learning (Part 4) Posted by on Apr 9, 2015 in Company News, Economics of Language Learning, Language Learning, Trends

Logistics?  Of language programs?  “Say what…?”

New technologies allow learners to acquire a language anytime, anywhere with the same efficiency and effectiveness (if not more!) of a traditional classroom experience. (Image by Michael Cote on Flickr.com)

New technologies allow learners to acquire a language anytime, anywhere with the same efficiency and effectiveness (if not more!) of a traditional classroom experience. (Image by Michael Cote on Flickr.com)

In Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3, we talked about how to train and sustain language proficiency more efficiently and reliably. Getting that right can radically improve the economics of professional language programs in government, industry and academe.

Just as transformative to the economics is changing when and where people teach, train and sustain. We call that “logistics.”

Let’s take the “Organization ABC” Remote Enhancement Program as an example. It’s a real-world example, although we’ve changed the name. It’s actually quite common that we aren’t permitted to use the real names of certain customers such as sports teams, well-known companies or government organizations.

Organization ABC has people all over the world that they’ve identified as being skilled in a language that the company considers valuable. ABC pays these employees a bonus to keep their language(s) sharp. Periodic testing confirms that skills are indeed still strong enough, and the company even offers a six-week language refresher course at Silicon Valley headquarters to those who feel they need the boost.

New to their mix is a “remote language enhancement” option. Instead of coming back to HQ for six weeks of full-time training, personnel stay where they are and do training part time. The remote option is twelve weeks instead of six, so twice the calendar time. But remote students only do four hours per week instead of full-time instruction. Three of those hours are work on Transparent Language Online and other  independent computer-delivered activity. The remaining hour is spent doing intensive communication with an instructor in a virtual classroom.

Astonishingly, the remote program is delivering proficiency gains just as strong as the traditional classroom program, even for less motivated students (as we’ll discuss in Part 5). Astonishing because the costs (travel, payroll, lodging, instruction, facilities) of the remote program are more than 90% less, and the disruption of removing a key person from the team is completely eliminated.

Everyone agrees that language skills are important and valuable. Even so, if language training takes too long and costs too much, many enterprises will try to find a way to do without. Declarative Acceleration Blended Learning (See Part 3) is making language training more effective and efficient, which means that more people will want to learn, and more bosses will support them. We love it.

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About the Author:Transparent Language

Transparent Language is a leading provider of best-practice language learning software for consumers, government agencies, educational institutions, and businesses. We want everyone to love learning language as much as we do, so we provide a large offering of free resources and social media communities to help you do just that!


Comments:

  1. Aubrey:

    Hello there,

    I noticed you dont have Tagalog/Filipino and Cebuano /Bisayan. I wonder if you want to add these.
    Interesting posts and readings, they directed me here .
    Aside from teaching , I develop learning materials for all formats and for all levels.
    Looking forward to hear from you.

    Kind regards from Philippines,
    Aubrey

    • Transparent Language:

      @Aubrey Hi Aubrey! We have materials in 100+ languages right now but we strive to add 1-2 new languages every year. We do offer Tagalog, but not Cebuano as of yet. If you’re interested, you can apply for the Freelance Foreign Language Content Contributor position on our Careers page. That way, if/when we are ready to add Cebuano to our collection, we can contact you. Thanks for your interest!


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