A Mandarin E-Learning System in Pervasive Environment

A Mandarin E-Learning System in Pervasive Environment

Yue Ming (Beijing JiaoTong University, China) and Zhenjiang Miao (Beijing JiaoTong University, China)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-166-7.ch011
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Abstract

This chapter was inspired by the work of the designers of a Mandarin language e-learning as they attempted to find the best solution to deal with the problems occurring in e-learning. E-Learning environments designated to facilitate long-distance learning are gaining popularity. Pervasive computing has a great potential for many next-generation IT applications. The authors describe pervasive computing system design and implementation for Mandarin e-learning. The authors propose a Human-centered Pervasive Computing System Model (HPC) and Layered Architecture Analysis and Design Method (LAAD). Based on the HPC model and LAAD method, a pervasive computing based Mandarin e-Learning system is designed and implemented. They particularly focus on Mandarin pronunciation learning which estimates the intelligibility of foreign learners’ speech and ranks their errors from the view point of improving their intelligibility. Its design and implementation issues are discussed in details.
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Introduction

Recently with the rapid development of the world, the communication between different countries has become more frequent. Subsequently learning the second language has turned into a fashion. This phenomenon has drawn attention of academic institutions, such as CALL (Computer Assisted Language Learning) which is used for people to learn the second language.

Similarly Mandarin, as the most representative cultural sign of China, has also arrested the world’s attention. More and more foreigners begin to learn Mandarin; even some of them come to China personally with the purpose of learning it. However, due to the limitation of time and region, sometimes it is not convenient for learners to study Mandarin everywhere or anytime. Considering these factors, in this paper we are trying to establish a Mandarin pronunciation recognition and assessment system, which can be used on the Internet or in a small device. This system is aiming at providing a convenient approach for learners to study mandarin Chinese step by step and correcting their pronunciation with the help of the feedback from the system in the form of grading.

However, our investigation indicates that the teaching systems of e-Learning are lack of intelligence. They cannot interact with learners, cannot adjust the curriculum contents based on their learning situation, and most importantly cannot make the learning anywhere and anytime. Pervasive Computing emerges as the times requires and gradually penetrates our daily life. When we talk about the main advantages of pervasive computing, we usually think of anywhere, anytime, any format, and any device (Susanne, 2006). This means:

  • Anywhere: Global accessibility, with regard to various kinds of communication networks.

  • Anytime: Twenty-four hours, but also independent of other services or persons.

  • Any format: Email, public services, inter- and intranet, various data formats.

  • Any device: (Table-) PC, Personal Digital Assistant (PDA), cell phone, etc.

Thus we can take full advantage of pervasive computing technologies to design our Mandarin e-learning system where the learner can put forward his personalized learning requests according to his knowledge structure and learning plan. Then, our system will analyze the learner’s learning history and demands, adjusting the curriculum contents, which stand for his learning requests and preferences anytime and anywhere without any restrictions.

Moreover, in order to facilitate the foreign learners and bring more and more web-based Mandarin e-learning resources and personalized learning guides, we design virtual language learning community as a major function of our system where Mandarin language learners can practice their pronunciations and interact with other learners freely. In a word, our system is a pool of Mandarin language place where you can interact with people from all around the world to share your interests and concerns about Mandarin.

This paper is organized as follows: in section 2, I will introduce the related background of Mandarin e-learning; then, I propose the design and implementation of complete system in section 3; finally, I will describe the future prospects and conclusions in section 4 and 5, respectively.

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Background

E-learning has changed the possibilities for a higher education for many people around the world. There has been an increasingly wide application of Internet technologies in our education. About 15 years ago, distance education using computer-mediated communication emerged for the first time, and 10 years ago Internet and email was introduced to e-education for small-scale delivery of some courses (Qing, 2005).This is not the end. During this period there has been a significant transformation in the developed world in:

  • The way in which information is published and distributed;

  • The range of Internet tools and systems which are widely available to individuals and organizations;

  • The ways in which people can communicate with each other.

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Editorial Advisory Board
Table of Contents
Foreword
Chao-Han Liu
Chapter 1
Lorna Uden, Nian-Shing Chen, Chun-Wang Wei, Jui-Chu Fan
The implementation of Online Synchronous Learning (OSL) poses many challenges to existing instruction technology theory because of the complexity of... Sample PDF
Online Synchronous English Learning from Activity Theory Perspectives
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Chapter 2
Eva Lindgren, Kirk P.H. Sullivan, Mats Deutschmann, Anders Steinvall
In a case study a University class undertook a translation from Swedish to English in a keystroke logging environment and then replayed their... Sample PDF
Supporting Learner Reflection in the Language Translation Class
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Chapter 3
Katsunori Kotani, Takehiko Yoshimi, Takeshi Kutsumi, Ichiko Sata, Hitoshi Isahara
In this chapter, the authors examined reading evaluation methods for foreign language learners based on learners’ reading processes. The goal of... Sample PDF
A Reading Evaluation Method for English as a Foreign Language Learners Based on Reading Performances
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Chapter 4
Robert Ariew, Jeremy Palmer
Enrollments in Arabic language programs are rapidly growing throughout the United States. Until recently, Arabic has received minimal attention in... Sample PDF
Developing Hypertext Reading Materials for the Teaching of Arabic
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Chapter 5
Bolanle A. Olaniran
This chapter explores computer-mediated communication (CMC) and information communication technology (ICT) use in language learning. More... Sample PDF
Culture and Language Learning in Computer-Enhanced or Assisted Language Learning
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Chapter 6
Indi Marie Williams, Heather N. Warren, Bolanle A. Olaniran
Within a globalized society, foreign language acquisition is essential to promote intercultural global communication. For many, the use of... Sample PDF
Achieving Cultural Acquiescence Through Foreign Language E-Learning
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Chapter 7
Eleonora Pantano, Assunta Tavernise
This chapter aims at illustrating how Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) could be used to exploit and disseminate Cultural Heritage... Sample PDF
Learning Cultural Heritage Through Information and Communication Technologies: A Case Study
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Chapter 8
Wei-Peng Lien, Rita Kuo, Maiga Chang
This project aimed to construct a Blended Learning model with a lecture-review Web site, which would support students’ self-learning at home or in... Sample PDF
Using Blended Learning to Teach Foreign Brides Chinese
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Chapter 9
Terence Murphy
One central task faced by those interested in the corpus analysis of second language writing is how to measure ESL textual sophistication. While... Sample PDF
Exploring the Concept of Emergent Coherence in a Corpus of Korean EFL Texts
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Chapter 10
Giuseppe Conti, Raffaele De Amicis, Gabrio Girardi, Michele Andreolli, Stefano Piffer
In the past years the adoption of computer graphics to improve learning experience has seen a rising success. The wide availability of dedicated... Sample PDF
The Role of Interactive Computer Graphics to Augment the Learning Experience of Cultural Heritage Within Museums and Expositions
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Chapter 11
Yue Ming, Zhenjiang Miao
This chapter was inspired by the work of the designers of a Mandarin language e-learning as they attempted to find the best solution to deal with... Sample PDF
A Mandarin E-Learning System in Pervasive Environment
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Chapter 12
Jiyou Jia
Computer Simulation in Educational Communication (CSIEC), is not only an intelligent Web-based human-computer dialogue system with natural language... Sample PDF
An Intelligent Web-Based Human-Computer Interaction System with Natural Language CSIEC and its Integration into English Instruction
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Chapter 13
Hamdi Erkunt
Can a traditional college course be enhanced with online collaborative learning, with similar attributes to knowledge work in the modern world? Can... Sample PDF
Developing Electronic Portfolios in a Computer Supported Collaborative Learning Environment
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Chapter 14
Min Kang
The goal of this chapter is to explain several experiments carried out by our research group to explore whether synthetic speech can be currently... Sample PDF
Synthetic Speech in Computer-Enhanced Foreign Language Learning
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Chapter 15
Niki Lambropoulos, Martha Christopoulou, Kosmas Vlachos
This chapter presents culture-based language-learning objects (CLLOs) in computer-assisted language learning (CALL), supported by user-centered... Sample PDF
Culture-Based Language Learning Objects: A CALL Approach for a Ubiquitous World
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Chapter 16
Nektaria Palaiologou
Nowadays, it is a common ascertainment that information and communication technologies (ICTs) and networked learning are not easy to access for many... Sample PDF
Intercultural Dimensions in the Information Society: Reflections on Designing and Developing Culturally Oriented Learning
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Chapter 17
Karen L. Murphy, Yakut Gazi, Lauren Cifuentes
This chapter addresses the question, “How can we overcome potential cultural discontinuities in online collaborative project-based learning... Sample PDF
Intercultural Collaborative Project-Based Learning in Online Environments
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Chapter 18
Diane Boehm, Lilianna Aniola-Jedrzejek
This chapter presents seven principles of good practice for conducting virtual international collaborations with students. The authors have... Sample PDF
Seven Principles of Good Practice for Virtual International Collaboration
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Chapter 19
Rita Zaltsman
The present chapter assesses the key questions of communication barriers in distance learning virtual communities. To examine their cultural... Sample PDF
Communication Barriers and Conflicts in Cross-Cultural E-Learning
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About the Contributors