Last week on the Blog, I talked about the benefits of live instruction, pointing out that virtual live instruction can be even more accessible, and, therefore, more effective than in-person classes. This week, I’d like to look at some data showing exactly how effective virtual live instruction can be.For this analysis, we considered data generated by thousands of Voxy users between January and June of 2018, comparing learners who took advantage of either small group classes or targeted one-on-one instruction to learners who did not. Here are the results for the group participating in live instruction relative to those who did not:We considered the scores that learners received on an objective test of global proficiency (the Voxy Proficiency Assessment®, or VPA), which looks at reading, listening, and integrated grammar and readings skill. We also considered learners’ starting proficiency level, and the amount of time they spent learning on the Voxy platform. In general, learners with minimal exposure to live instruction improve one proficiency level after about three months of Voxy usage. Those who participate actively in live instruction make even more progress. We know from significant empirical research that engagement drives outcomes, and these data reflect that as well. The more time learners spend in the platform, the more quickly they will improve. Live instruction offers the real-time practice with speaking and listening that’s necessary for language learning and it also encourages learners to spend more time practicing on their own—a win-win situation.
Katharine Nielson, Ph.D. leads a team of curriculum specialists, data analysts, and research associates to develop test items, curate language learning content, develop curricula, and run empirical studies. She’s spent twenty years teaching languages, researching how to teach languages, and teaching people how to teach languages in various settings around the world.