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MobLang – The modern way of learning a foreign language through your mobile phone
MobLang aims to teach basic conversation language skills using mobile phones. MobLang has received extensive media coverage from local Basque mass media following its official launching in the Basque Country of Spain. The project also launched in Greece, Northern Ireland and Cyprus.
MobLang Partners met in San Sebastian in the Basque country in Spain on the 14-18th October 2011 for the conference ‘Mobile learning as the future of education’. The conference was a huge success that was opened by the Minister of Education of the Basque country and was attended by more than 100 people.
MobLang stands for Mobile Language learning and the core idea is to support people in conflict zones to learn the language of each others’ community. These scientifically validated multimedia courses have been developed by the Language Center of the University of Cyprus and software has been developed for mobile phones running Java. Each course consists of essential vocabulary, phrases, dialogues, and exercises which are reinforced with sound and images
The courses are free of charge and are available for Greek speakers to learn Turkish, Turkish speakers to learn Greek, Greek speakers to learn Albanian, and Spanish speakers to learn Basque. Special versions are also available for Greek speaking nurses to learn Turkish and finally for English speaking children to learn Gaelic.
MobLang promotes intercultural dialogue, especially in former European conflict regions or regions with many minority groups, through promotion of linguistic diversity. Due to language barriers between individuals of different ethnic groups living in the same country, or Europeans visiting other countries for business or pleasure, natural interaction is hindered.
Communication in a foreign language can hold back the development of friendships and closer relationships, thus preventing fruitful intercultural exchange and dialogue. Basic language knowledge of one’s conversational partner is usually appreciated and creates a comforting atmosphere. Today’s Europeans are too busy to attend language classes. Exploiting technology and especially the recently emerging developments as far as mobile learning is concerned could offer a viable alternative. Mobile phones are the optimal learning tools that could enable people to learn anytime, anywhere, and at their own pace.