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Enhancing regional and cultural expertise Posted by on Jan 9, 2020 in For Learners, For Program Managers

You’ve probably heard about CL-150 Cohort lesson streams as a resource for language maintenance. But did you know the weekly lessons also help learners enhance regional and cultural expertise?

Foreign language proficiency, regional expertise, and cultural knowledge are enduring critical competencies for US Government language professionals, but all three require continuous effort to maintain and enhance. CL-150 Cohorts take advantage of the inherent overlap of these core competencies, targeting all three simultaneously in weekly lessons delivered right to your inbox.

What’s a CL-150 Cohort lesson?

How do Cohorts support regional and cultural expertise?

Authentic Sources

All lessons are based on authentic sources—newspaper articles, op eds, podcast episodes, TV commercials, etc.—made by native speakers for native speakers. Learners are exposed to events and topics from the same perspective as the local populice.

Sustainers aren’t simply learning to read in the language at level, they are reading in the language to learn about the target region and culture.

CL-150 Cohorts authentic Arabic lesson

This Levantine Arabic Cohort lesson is based on an Alghad TV interview with an environmental activist who produced a short film to highlight waste found in the streets of Al-Bireh City in Palestine. The lesson text is a transcript of the interview, and a YouTube link is provided so learners can hear the original interview.

Current Language Usage & Current Events

Most Cohort lessons are based on sources that are only days—or even hours—old, not years old. These current sources describe important events and changes throughout the region and reflect the latest language usage, including new expressions, acronyms, or slang, as well as domain-specific terms required to discuss emerging trends or major events.

CL-150 Cohorts lesson

A Mandarin Chinese Cohort lesson based on a news segment on the United States’ “shameless provocation”—sailing a warship through the Taiwan Strait for the ninth time in 2019. The lesson vocabulary covers very specific naval vocabulary, as well as Chinese idioms used in the article.

Relevant Domains

To maintain proficiency, each Cohort lesson is crafted very carefully to align to a particular ILR level. The same level of care goes into choosing sources that align to mission-relevant topics—all lessons cover domains that contribute to cultural and/or regional expertise, including politics, security, society, military, economy, etc.

CL-150 Cohorts domain lessons

As you can see from the lesson names, in a six-week period, subscribers to this Cohort lesson stream received lessons covering a wide range of domains, including politics, geography, culture, military, and society.

With more than 30 lessons published every week covering the latest news in a range of languages, levels, and domains, CL-150 Cohorts provide streams of current, relevant learning materials that learners won’t find in any textbook or online course.

If your organization or team is struggling to maintain language proficiency and continuously build regional and cultural expertise, let’s talk about how CL-150 Cohorts can help: usg@transparent.com.

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