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DLIFLC hosts international BILC seminar

MONTEREY, Calif. – More than 60 participants from approximately 20 allied nations, that represent their country’s equivalent to the Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center, arrived Monday for a four-day seminar to share best practices in the furthering of foreign language training goals through research.

“Each year [BILC] member countries take turns hosting this seminar. 2011 was our turn to host this event,” said Detlev Kesten, the assistant provost of operations at DLIFLC.
This year’s Bureau for International Language Coordination was hosted by the Commandant, Col. Danial Pick and Provost, Dr. Donald Fischer. The overarching theme of the seminar is “Research in Action.”

The 20 nations that are participating consist of NATO members and Partnership for Peace affiliated countries. On the first day of the seminar, DLIFLC invited guests to conduct classroom observations that highlight the introduction of multiple technologies into the Institute classrooms to aid in a more rapid language learning process.

“This is a great opportunity for organizations to collaborate on best practices and work together to solve issues that revolve around research and teaching methodology in the language community,” said Dr. Shannon Salyer, a senior research scientist for DLIFLC.

Topics discussed on the first day included research that involves community efforts to expand, supplement and revise the Interagency Language Roundtable listening guidelines, Integral approaches to English in the Dutch Military, a Norwegian introduction to Pashto language learning, and computer scoring of speaking proficiency.

The seminar also included briefings from eight nations about attrition reduction topics, Serbian to English language training and testing, Australian military and terminology translation, dynamics between learning and teaching styles in Canada, developing Polish materials for listening exams, “lingvoculturology” from Denmark, and an English language training system in Bosnian.

The idea sharing and collaboration began with an Armenian briefing on the rate of learning and its pedagogical implications followed by briefings about successful speaking and pronunciation activities with language learners and the role of research at DLIFLC.

“This seminar gives DLI staff a unique opportunity to avail themselves to experts from other countries who have similar missions and goals,” said Kesten.

Text and Photo by

Text by Brian Lamar, Strategic Communications

Photo Caption: DLIFLC Commandant Col. Danial D. Pick, addressing BILC seminar participants.
Photo by Natela Cutter, Strategic Communications

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