Thursday, March 6, 2008

Clarity Newsletter - are self-access centres really dying a slow death?

Hi everyone!

It's really great to see that we have some new people joining this discussion, and although it's currently vacation time for a lot of you, I thought it was time to get a bit controversial!

If you click on this link you can download the latest newsletter from "Clarity". Clarity is a Hong Kong based software designer and provider which produces some great language learning software for use in self-access centres. If you don't already have their software in your centres, then you might want to take a look at their main website.

In this month's newsletter, there is an article called "The slow death of the self access centre?" Two people are giving their views on whether or not self-access centres are becoming defunct. The argument centres around two points: technological advances which allow learners to access both authentic and learner-specific materials in their own homes, and the importance of the learning advisor/educator in self-access centres.

What do you think about this? Is there still a place for providing resources (including human ones) in a dedicated physical space, or should we be letting our centres die?

Looking forward to your comments!