Development and testing of an on-line video game to teach second languages
Copernicus Studios Inc. (CSI; Halifax, NS) is developing LANGA – disruptive LANguage GAming software to help people learn new languages. LANGA uses advanced speech recognition and high-end animation to create a unique and engaging gaming experience. However, LANGA is more than just flash – it has been developed in partnership with the NeuroCognitive Imaging Lab (NCIL) at Dalhousie University. This industrial-academic partnership was forged to ensure that the training programs are informed by research in second language learning, and that LANGA’s effectiveness has been validated in the lab. At present we have developed a proof-of-concept prototype and demonstrated that it is effective in teaching people basic vocabulary in a new language. This Mitacs Accelerate cluster will support three interns — with backgrounds in linguistics, cognitive neuroscience, and computer science — to conduct the additional research and development needed to make LANGA more comprehensive, effective, and market-ready.