Category Archives: Learning and Development Materials

When Pronunciation Isn’t Enough: Teaching Comprehension

Today we conclude our language learning video series with Voxy’s Chief Education Officer, Dr. Katharine Nielson, who has been answering all your nitty-gritty questions about how people learn languages. One of the most common language learning exercises is to read a text-based resource, but as instructors we often make the mistake of focusing primarily on …

Task-Based Language Teaching: What Does It Really Mean?

If you Google Task-Based Language Teaching, or TBLT, you’ll find a lot of definitions related to the latest trend in teaching second or foreign languages. But what does it really mean? TBLT is an approach to language learning that was popularized in the 1980s by N. Prabhu in Bangalore, India. Prabhu discovered that learners were …

The Best and Worst Ways to Provide Feedback to Learners

Today we bring you the latest segment in a video series by Voxy’s Chief Education Officer, Dr. Katharine Nielson, who’s answering all your nitty-gritty questions about how people learn languages. As a language instructor, when and how should you be offering your learners corrective feedback? And what’s the worst thing you can do when a …

What We Know for Sure About Using Technology for Language Instruction

Today our video series continues with Voxy’s Chief Education Officer, Dr. Katharine Nielson, who’s answering all your nitty-gritty questions about how people learn languages. When new technology appears in the education space, instructors often scramble to get their hands on the hottest new tools for their classrooms—but technology isn’t always the answer. In this video, …

Should language learners try to sound like native speakers?

Today we bring you the latest segment in a video series by Voxy’s Chief Education Officer, Dr. Katharine Nielson, who’s answering all your nitty-gritty questions about how people learn languages. When teaching and learning a second language, we often look to the native speaker as the ultimate model, but is this a reasonable goal? Most …

Voxy's Totally Unique Approach to Language Learning

Voxy recently received a patent for its innovative approach to language learning, but why is this so important and what makes Voxy’s approach different from other methodologies? Voxy’s Chief Education Officer, Dr. Katharine B. Nielson, breaks it down for us. VOXY: What does this patent mean for Voxy? KBN: One of the things that makes …

Dr. Katharine Nielson: Back in the Classroom

As Voxy’s Chief Education Officer, I oversee our pedagogical approach to second language acquisition (SLA) and all of our SLA-related research. Learning a second language is one of the most complicated things that a person can do, and I’ve dedicated my career to identifying the most effective ways to help language learners and teachers. I …

How It Works: Voxy Cassius™

“It’s not bragging if you can back it up.” That’s what Cassius Clay—who later changed his name to Muhammad Ali—once said about his boxing skills. Ali is considered one of the best athletes of his time, but the “Cassius” I’m referring to is Voxy’s proprietary Natural Language Processing (NLP) tool, Voxy Cassius™. It’s the powerful …

6 Qualities of a Great Tutor

At Voxy, we hire the best tutors around.  To find the greatest tutors, we not only look for certain experience and certifications, but also for specific personal characteristics.  Below, we’ve highlighted the qualities of a tutor that are important to Voxy and also to learners around the world. Smart First, a great tutor is smart …

5 Ways Classrooms Can Mirror Mobile Apps

Mobile phones have historically been banned from the classroom and seen as a distraction to education. But with new developments in education apps, there are some very powerful mobile concepts that can be transferred the classroom. 1. Provide instant feedback. Mobile technology allows users to receive instant feedback for almost anything. Whether it’s reading a …