Live blogging from CALICO: LAC and Moodle

Updated June 3 2007

Cindy Evans from Skidmore gave a presentation on the Languages across the Curriculum (LAC) program at Skidmore… Note to you Moodle aficionados: she uses Moodle to support the students who choose the LAC option. A copy of her ppt can be found here:here

At Skidmore, students get one credit in LAC for doing reading and writing in the target language in a course outside of the languages. The goals of the Skidmore LAC program are to improve L2 reading proficiency, enhance vocab in the target discipline, address writing proficiency and provide ongoing L2 learning outside of the regular language classes.

Pedagogical challenges:
Accommodating the diversity of proficiency levels within content areas : the level required for reading Spanish in a biology class for example… (and I would imagine, the different proficiencies of the language specialists in the content areas too)

Of particular interest to this listener was how Moodle worked with the LAC program… positive aspects of Moodle include…Interactivity, Supports Individual and Collaborative Work, THE GLOSSARY FEATURE (ding ding ding), the constructivist theory and philosophy which forms the underpinnings of Moodle.. “constructing something for others to experience”

The Skidmore LAC site on Moodle:
FF 340: Advanced Languages Across the Curriculum: French is the course that Cindy taught (note: guest access was turned off at the time of this writing)

I spoke with Cindy and Jan Marston (Drake University) about LAC projects and they both will be joining us on a future LLU show. Questions that come to my mind: how does this mirror the “Writing Across the Curriculum” programs that some of us have in place? How much additional work does this mean for the language teachers? How many credits does this? Can tools such as Moodle facilitate the learning and the assessment of learning in ways that standard CMS tools and face-to-face teaching cannot?

If you have a LAC program in place, or have questions about LAC and would like to join us, please email us at

Barbara is a Lecturer in Hispanic Studies at a small liberal arts college in Maine. Rumor has it this was also her alma mater. She used to work for a small liberal arts college in the cornfields of Ohio for almost 20 years as a teacher and language center director. Prior to these adventures in higher ed she taught high school Spanish and loved it. She wishes she had more time in her life to play with her dogs, write, read, swim, do yoga things and making stuff out of clay. To see her online portfolio please click here!

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  1. Doug Canfield · May 24, 2007 Reply


    Thank you so much for this wonderful service for those of use who could not escape the inertia of our offices until June!

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