As a Lecturer in German at the Open University's School of Languages and Applied Linguistics, I have been designing courses and developing materials for language learning at a distance for over 20 years. I have a background in Applied Linguistics and second language pedagogy and a keen interest in all aspects of second language development. I am particuarly interested in how learners can develop their interactive competence in online environments. I organize our annual Residential School which we run in collaboration with the Friedrich Schiller University in Jena/Germany.
Before joining the Open Unviersity I taught German language and culture to students from beginner to postgraduate level at Mid-Kent College of Higher and Further Education.
I have researched student use of online environments for language learning and have been involved in setting up LORO, a repository of language teaching resources inspired by the Open Educational Resources movement. I am currently investigating the potential of vicarious participation in recorded online tutorials for second language development.
I enjoy curriculum development and have extensive experience in course design and developing multimedia language learning materials for distance learners. I am especially interested in developing students' cultural awareness and interactive competence in German. I have developed learning materials related to diverse topic areas including geography, education, stereotypes and film. At the moment I am working on an EU-funded Massive Open Online Course with a 'German for work' focus.
I have contributed to teaching at the OU in the following roles: