A descriptive study of language laboratories and of their use in the teaching of French as a second language in Manitoba secondary schools
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Language laboratory equipment is described in this study and criteria for selecting laboratory equipment are proposed to guide schoool personnel in making a wise choice. COnsiderations concerning the laying out of the language laboratory room are offered. Administrative guidelines are set out for the effective use of language laboratories. Advice for the preparation of recordings for the laboratory library is given. Five high school French programs are evaluated as to their usefulness in a language laboratory and as to their linguistic soundness. FInally some of the areas of need in the training of teachers of French for the effective use of laboratories are identified. These recommendations are arrived at on the basis of a survey of the literature on language laboratories and on linguistically modern methods of language teaching. The equipment that is known to be available is classified as to its features and qualities described in promotional literature. The recommendations of authorities in the field and the experience gained in the planning and supervising of the language laboratories in the Winnipeg School Division are drawn upon to make practical suggestions concerning the choice, installation, and use of this equipment. Since the effectiveness of this equipment depends considerably on the type of program that is used with it, five linguistically modern programs are evaluated. These five programs had been selected for their high quality by a provincial curriculum committee in Manitoba. The criteria used for evaluation are largely those given by a promient contemporary linguist, Robert Lado. In the matter of teacher training, the writer proposed that teachers need competence in the four skills of language, in various branches of linguistic science, and intensive contact with the cultural milieu.