Is the Touchstone Online Course basically a digital version of the Touchstone Student's Book?
No. The online course complements the book and facilitates the integration of classroom study and self study. It allows you to move from a 100% face-to-face, traditional course to whatever ratio of blended learning - that is, the blend (or
mix) of both face-to-face and online learning environments - that best suits your needs.
The Touchstone Online Course includes Web 2.0 features; these are tools which allow users to communicate with each other in special online communities. ! e online course also includes computer- and game-based learning with tightly structured learning paths. It offers numerous extra presentation and practice activities, for example, many of the Touchstone language points such as Conversation Strategy, Strategy Plus, and Grammar Presentations have been
expanded and provided as Flash movies. There are other compelling features such as the opportunity for students to record their own voice and compare their recording with native speaker models, and to take part in interactive online
Does the Touchstone Online Course replace the teacher?
Not at all. The Touchstone Online Course was developed with an awareness of the increasing need for blended learning. With the online course, you will be able to tailor your classroom time to the language areas best suited to face-to-face
teaching, and you will have the flexibility to select those areas based on your students’ needs. From monitoring their self-study activities to facilitating and moderating their online community, your role in integrating your students’ online and classroom learning is indispensable. How you actually use the online course will depend on your program and the model that best suits you and your
learners. ! e content can be used in a number of teaching scenarios: pre-teaching, post-class revision, class time replacement, indeed whatever suits your particular teaching and learning situation.
Why was the Touchstone Online Course developed?
The Touchstone Online Course mitigates the common problem in many ELT programs of ( nding enough time to complete a course syllabus. Research shows that students need stronger motivation and closer monitoring in order to work independently, and the Touchstone Online Course meets those needs. the course provides instructing and carefully structured self-study materials, and student activity within the LMS can be tracked. ! is trackability allows teachers and institutions to monitor not only the learning outside of the classroom, but also the relative success of that learning, and the strengths and weaknesses of the students.
Moreover, today’s students expect to learn using computers and Internet-delivered Web tools. ! ey use these in their everyday lives and learning.
What methodology is used in Touchstone Online?
The Touchstone Online Course stays true to the methodology of the Touchstone corpus-based course. It retains Touchstone’s noticing methodology for language presentation and personalized practice activities, and offers additional opportunities for interactive and collaborative learning.
How would I use Touchstone Online?
The Touchstone Online Course course content maps to the Touchstone Student’s Book at every step, right down to the level of individual exercises. It is therefore easy to blend the online course with face-to-face classes using the Touchstone
books and other resources. Whatever blended learning solution you may need, the Touchstone Online Course has been designed so that you can always adapt it to your students’ and your institution’s needs.
Can students study the lessons in a unit out of order?
No. It is very important that Lessons A, B, C, and D are studied in order. This is because the new structures and vocabulary taught in the earlier lessons are generally recycled and reused in the later lessons. Each lesson in a unit assumes that students have learned the language of the previous lesson(s). So, for example, simple present statements are taught before simple present questions; students learn the strategy of asking questions in two ways only after they have learned how to ask yes-no and information questions.
How will my students respond to the Touchstone Online Course?
Adults and young adults use the Internet all the time - for social networking, making arrangements, playing games, watching movies, and downloading music. You will find that your students are very motivated to use technology in their learning too. The Touchstone Online Course appeals to learners with its online community, games, timed activities, animation, movies, and the overall interactive nature of the program.
Do I need technical training in order to use the Touchstone Online Course?
No. The Touchstone Online Course does not require any specialized technical skills on the part of the student or teacher.
How do I access the Touchstone Online Course?
Every user is issued with a username and password to allow them to access the Cambridge LMS and their Touchstone Online Course within it. The course is accessed via the Cambridge LMS. It is delivered online and not using local servers.