The proliferation of digital communication platforms has greatly enhanced opportunities for long-distance interactions and intercultural experiences, and several effective forms of telecollaborative language learning have arisen in the field of foreign language instruction. Language teachers can connect students to target communities through web conferencing, email partnerships, social networks, and other synchronous and asynchronous channels. Despite mounting interest among educators in telecollaboration and intercultural competence, successfully incorporating these technologies within the structures and demands of traditional language classrooms and programs is no simple matter.
Heritage language classes are particularly ripe for telecollaborative learning. Heritage Language Learners (HLLs) have complex linguistic identities, and benefit greatly from academic experiences that engage their awareness of cultural and linguistic contexts and their points of connection.
Partnering with universities in the US and abroad, the Heritage Telecollaboration project (HT) at CILC has designed and piloted telecollaboration modules for heritage Spanish and Mandarin Chinese courses at four-year and community colleges. This website provides free access to the sample modules, as well as to a collection of reviews of relevant research, suggestions for free telecollaborative technology tools, and information on relevant conferences and professional development opportunities for telecollaboration in language education.