CARLAtech: Transitioning to Teaching Language Online (TTLO)

June 12–July 2, 2017 (3-week online course)

Target Audience: High school and post-secondary language teachers who will be transitioning to teaching online.

This summer institute is for experienced language teachers who want to transition to teaching online. Offered completely online, this 3-week, intensive course will give teacher participants the experience of being an online learner. Course content will focus on many different facets of a successful online language course, such as creating community, time management strategies for teachers and students, choosing appropriate technology tools for communicative-based activities, and developing a variety of online activity types. In addition to exploring these aspects of teaching online, participants will see these concepts in action in model online language activities. By the end of the course, participants will have a portfolio of activities ready to be incorporated in an online course. Teachers will be awarded a certificate of completion upon finishing course requirements.

Program Schedule

Week 1
  • Intro to the Course:
    Virtual Classroom Orientation, Definitions, and Tech Check
  • Determine teacher and student readiness to work online
  • Evaluate online course design using quality checklists
  • Identify best practices and differences between F2F and online teaching
  • Investigate resources at your school and beyond
Week 2
  • Participate in model TTLO lessons, evaluate existing materials
  • Discuss presentation of vocabulary and grammar in an online course
  • Consider the use of authentic materials and copyright
  • Focus on oral production in the online class
  • Assess online learners
Week 3
  • Interpretive mode activities
  • Interpersonal mode activities
  • Presentational mode activities
  • Presentation of instructional materials
  • ePortfolio final project

During this institute you will:

  • Experience being an online learner;

  • Discover the differences between teaching in the classroom and teaching online;

  • Apply guidelines, best practices, and readiness quizzes to preparing yourself and your students for working in an online environment;
  • Participate in model language activities to see activities and tools in action;

  • Evaluate your current syllabus to see what areas will need to be worked on; and
  • Test out, create, and evaluate online tools and activities within the framework of the 3 communication modes.

Who should apply

Applicants should be experienced classroom language teachers who instruct using a student-centered, proficiency-based, communication-oriented methodology and are comfortable with technology. Priority will be given to those who are planning to teach an online course in the near future with the support of their department.

Important Dates

Due Date:  Applications accepted until the course fills, or May 26.

Acceptance notification: you will be notified May 26, or shortly after submitting your application.
PLEASE NOTE: there is a Summer Institute Early Bird registration rate until May 26. Once you are accepted, be sure to follow registration instructions quickly to get the lower rate.

Course dates: June 12-July 2, 2017

Course format and technology requirements

This course is an intense 3-week course, delivered entirely online through an online course management system. The course is mostly asynchronous, but there will be daily due date/times, and a couple of partner activities that are at self-arranged times. You should expect to spend approximately 4-8+ hours daily on this course.

You will need an internet connection with a good, reliable connection in order to watch and create videos online. You will need a headset with microphone (or at least ear buds) and a webcam for your computer in order to participate fully in the course. All of the applications we use online will be free or demonstration sites to try out activities.

Time Commitment

This intensive 3-week course will take 4-8+ hours daily for three weeks. Do not plan to work, or attend or teach anything else in addition to this course!


As the course is completely online, there are no costs for transportation or housing!
Cost for the course is $500.00 for about 120 hours of participation. You will need to purchase 2 books from

Cost for Credit (Optional)
There is an option to take the course for credit. For those not enrolled in degree programs at the University of Minnesota, the additional tuition cost is $677 per credit for this 3-credit course, PLUS approximately $100 in registration fees. You can find a chart of tuition and fees for non-degree-seeking students or refer to the University's OneStop website for more complete information.
Cost for those who are University of Minnesota students will be based on your status at the University, and there is a discount on the initial $500 CARLA registration if you are taking the course for credit.

Process for credit
Registration for credit will take place in June, just prior to the beginning of this CARLA program. You will be billed the cost of University tuition and fees by the University of Minnesota Registrar’s Office in July. Your bill will be due in full by the end of July.

How to Apply

*** Please complete the Teacher Participant Application ***
There is limited space in this course - apply now!
Registration instructions will be sent after participants have been selected.

The application deadline has now passed.
Please contact Marlene ( if you would like to be put on a notification list for next year's course.


Please contact Marlene at

Course Instructors

Alyssa Bonnac (Lead Instructor) co-developed and taught CARLA's online course on using the web for language learning, and has worked for 9 years with teachers of a wide range of languages, including a number of the critical languages. Having completed online graduate coursework in learning technologies, Ms. Bonnac draws on her background as an online learner and as classroom teacher of academic ESL at the University of Minnesota to create meaningful and learner-centered professional development experiences.

Frances Matos-Schultz (Lead Instructor) is Senior Instructor in Spanish and Portuguese Studies, University of Minnesota. She developed and taught a hybrid Spanish course at the University of Minnesota that has been offered successfully since 1997 and designed, developed, and revised the fully online first-year Spanish courses for the University's College of Continuing Education, which she has taught for 3 years.

Marlene Johnshoy (Program Director) is the Online Education Program Director and Web Manager for the Center for Advanced Research on Language Acquisition. A former Spanish instructor, she has given numerous workshops across the country on many aspects of web-based language teaching and learning, with a special interest in the professional development of online language teachers.


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Center for Advanced Research on Language Acquisition (CARLA)
140 University International Center • 331 17th Ave SE • Minneapolis, MN 55414 | Contact CARLA