Language Lab Level One
Winter Quarter 2000
Class Meetings: MWF 10:40-11:50 A.M.
Instructor: Michael Buckhoff Office Phone:
Office: by appointment
Classroom: EE101 Office Hours: by appointment
Class Period: 10:40-11:50 A.M.
Course Overview and Policy
Barbara H. Foley. Now Hear This!
One 90 minute cassette tape
I want to improve your listening comprehension as well as your speaking and
pronunciation skills. Each unit will focus on the structure of the English
language. It will also focus on certain recurring pronunciation features of the
language, as well as short conversations between native speakers of English. You
will have an opportunity to participate in various listening and speaking
activities. We will have three types of speaking activities in our class in
order to help you improve your speaking skills: face to face interaction in the
form of interviews, partner activities with another student, and small group
After this course, you will be able to complete the following listening
1. Identify the main/topic supporting details of a conversation,
description, or narration.
2. Guess the meaning of new vocabulary by using the context of a
conversation based on general topics about American culture and survival
3. Recognize grammatical structures and words that signal differences among
the past, present, and the future tenses.
No make up quizzes or tests will be allowed. If you fail to take a quiz, your
overall grade for this class will be lowered. I will only allow you to make up
missed work if you have a written documented excuse from someone stating the
urgency of the situation (e.g. Doctorís note, CHP accident report, etc.).
Your attendance is required at all class meetings. Only written
documented excuses for an absence may result in your making up a quiz or test.
Attendance is important because all of the course work for this class will be
completed during class in the Language Laboratory. Three absences will result in
an overall reduction of one full letter grade and five absences will result in a
failing grade for this class. Please note the following calculations:
O absences = 30% of attendance grade
Extra credit on final grade calculations)
1 absence = 30% of attendance grade
2 absences = 25% of attendance grade
3 absences = 20% of attendance grade
4 absences = 10% of attendance grade
5 absences = Failure in class
Unfortunately, some students may occasionally arrive late for this class. If
you are late, please enter quietly and take a seat closest to the door. Please
try not to distract the other students. As an incentive for punctuality, the
following rules should prevent most students from coming late.
1. Any student who arrives fifteen minutes late or more will be
counted absent for that class period.
2. Three tardies will count as one absence.
3. Students will be given extra credit for arriving on time and for
attending every class.
Quizzes and Tests
During the quarter, we will have short quizzes. The purpose of these quizzes
is to help us assess our progress as we complete each of the chapters in the
book. Also, the quizzes will determine if we are meeting the course objectives
for this class. The quizzes will cover current material. There will be no final.
The number letter grading scale is set as follows:
NC Any grade below a C- will receive a no credit for this class. That will
suggest that it might be best to repeat level one next quarter.
Your final grade will be broken down as follows:
Homework assignments: 20%
Improving Listening Comprehension
The following ideas should help you to increase your listening comprehension
during the quarter. Completing a listening task can be done successfully without
100% comprehension. Do not try to understand everything that you listen to. If
you choose to listen to the radio or TV, focus on the main ideas presented. If
it is too fast for you, record the program so that you can work on understanding
it in smaller parts. For example, record five minutes of talk radio to a tape
and then replay the tape over and over and over, until you comprehend the main
points. Here are some suggestions:
1. Talk to a native speaker five times a
week for a period of 15 minutes each time.
2. Listen to and record news and
informational broadcasts on a talk radio station for at least 15 minutes a day
five days a week (i.e. KFI AM 640, KNX 1070 AM, KVCR 91.9 FM especially
"All Things Considered). Practice answering what, where, when, and how
questions about the speakers.
3. Listen to and record news
and informational broadcasts on television for at least 15 minutes a day three
days a week (i.e. CNN, Discovery, CBS-60 minutes). Practice answering what,
where, when, and how questions about the speakers.
4. Listen to, record and sing American music
and try to understand the main ideas of the songs. You are also practicing
pronunciation as you do this activity.
5. Attend the language lab during the open
hours and review our weekly lessons. Practice taking notes on what you hear.
Afterwards compare your notes to the tapescript.
6. Join a club (i.e. ISS, ASI) on campus or
attend open forums, university discussions, or debates so that you can hear
spoken English. Attend 1 or 2 meetings a week. Be an active participant by
taking notes and asking questions.
7. Join the quarterly ESL conversation group
to talk and make friends.
8. Join an intramural sports team so you can
have contact with native speakers of English.
9. Attend all ACLP Classes. Learn to
anticipate questions about the lectures so that you can improve you
note-taking abilities. Donít miss any classes. The more spoken English you
can hear, the better your listening will become.
10. Donít spend all your time talking with
people from your own country. Use the above list of ideas to help you break
out of your comfort zone by finding more and more opportunities to speak and
listen to English.
11. Remember that learning a language
involves risk taking. Donít worry about mistakes. Mistakes help you to
improve you English. Try to come into contact with as much spoken English as
possible. It is especially important that you meet , talk to, or listen to
native speakers. This will help make your "ears faster" and will
give you valuable feedback that you can use in monitoring your own speaking
and listening abilities.
12. Finally, remember the power of P.A.C.E. (positive
attitude changes everything). Enjoy and have fun learning the language!! If
you are positive and have a good attitude, you will learn the language easier
We will start in chapter 1 of the book Now Hear This and we will work
from week to week with the exercises. As we progress from lesson one, I will try
to keep the lessons appropriately paced for the majority of the class.
Hopefully, we will be able to get through the first 4 or so units of the book.
*We will have additional listening activities not listed above if I feel
it is necessary. I will announce in class when homework assignments are due. I
will announce any quizzes that we are to have in this class*