Implementing Reflective Practices and Portfolios in the Language Classroom to Enhance Proficiency

June 27–July 29, 2022

Asynchronous* 5-week online summer institute

Includes required synchronous meetings each week

This summer institute is co–sponsored by the Center for Applied Second Language Studies (CASLS), University of Oregon.

Goal setting and reflective practices are critical components of improved outcomes in world language classrooms. In the first part of this institute, participants will examine the reflective cycle developed by the National Council of State Supervisors for Languages (NCSSFL), empirical findings related to goal setting and language portfolio use, and a series of practical approaches to implementing reflective practice in the classroom. Next, participants will experience, examine, and design their own learning scenarios that yield higher-order cognitive and social engagement for learners. They will then draw explicit connections between these scenarios and language portfolio use.

After this institute, you will be able to:

  • Develop and outline an approach for implementing reflective practices and portfolio use in the world language classroom;

  • Employ effective epistemological routines to support portfolio use in the world language classroom;

  • Create learning scenarios that promote reflection and higher-order cognitive and social engagement for learners; and

  • Connect learning scenario activities to portfolio use and implementation.
Program Schedule
Week 1 Introduction to the Reflective Cycle and Goal Setting
  • NCSSFL Reflective Learning Cycle
  • Goal Setting and Motivation Research
  • Crafting Learning Goals with National Standards and Interculturality in Mind
  • Language Learning Processes
  • Understanding Complex Learning Scenarios
Week 2 Assessment and Evidence: Crafting Classroom Experiences with Learning Targets in Mind
  • Scaffolding for Creation of Activities for Higher-Order Social Engagement
  • Scaffolding for Creation of Activities for Higher-Order Cognitive Engagement
  • Scaffolding for Creation of Activities for Reflection and Self-Evaluation
Week 3 Strategies: Empowering Language Learners
  • Connecting Language Learning Strategies to Real-World Language Use
  • Exploring Methods for Strategic Instruction
  • Crafting Activities that Embed Strategic Language Use
Week 4 Thinking Routines and Critical Dispositions
  • Thinking Routines 
  • Reflection Routines
  • Experiencing Classroom Scenarios as Learners
Week 5 Connecting Classroom Experiences to Portfolio Use
  • Connecting Evidence with Learning Outcomes, Reflection, and Self-Evaluation
  • Design Team Challenge
  • Craft Portfolio Plan


Stephanie Knight

Julie Sykes

Stephanie Knight holds an M.A. in Latin American studies from the University of New Mexico. Stephanie is motivated by increasing educational access for under-represented populations of students in advanced secondary contexts and post-secondary contexts. She has presented nationally and internationally on best practices for planning, instruction, professional collaboration, and the intentional incorporation of digital tools in the world language classroom.

Julie Sykes earned her Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota. She is the Director of CASLS and an Associate Professor in the Department of Linguistics at the University of Oregon. Her research focuses on applied linguistics and second language acquisition with an emphasis on technological and pedagogical innovation for interlanguage pragmatic development and intercultural competence. She has taught courses on second language teaching and learning, methodology and research, language learning and technology, Hispanic linguistics, and interlanguage pragmatic development.

This summer institute is generously co-sponsored and co-staffed by the Center for Applied Second Language Studies (CASLS) at the University of Oregon.

Target Audience
This institute is open to teachers of all languages at all levels who are interested in the incorporation of reflective practices and portfolios in the language classroom.


  • This institute is primarily asynchronous (not real time). For the most part, you will work on activities according to your own schedule during the week but there are preset deadlines for activities. 
  • You must keep up with assignments each week as they build on each other. Many assignments involve facilitation from the instructor and/or collaboration with other participants. 
  • This institute includes several required check-in/discussion synchronous sessions: Mondays and Fridays at 10–11 a.m. (Central Time). Due to the July 4 holiday, the institute will meet on Tuesday, July 5, at the regularly scheduled time rather than Monday, July 4.
  • Make sure you can meet the tech requirements for this institute.
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