iPhone apps for ESL Listening

by Cindy Jett

iPhone apps for ESL Listening

I am writing you today to ask you to consider reviewing a new series of iPhone apps, entitled “Learn English by Radio,” based on classic American radio shows. Our goal in developing this series was to seamlessly weave EFL education into some of the most riveting stories ever told on American radio.

Our selections include Gunsmoke, the popular Western; Dragnet, the gritty crime drama; Our Miss Brooks, a light-hearted comedy and X Minus One, a sci-fi thriller. As you know, many students of English living Asian countries such as Japan develop a textbook knowledge of English, but have difficulty understanding native speakers. This app has been designed specifically for such students. We have developed new technology to directly address the common obstacles to listening comprehension such as speed of speech, relaxed pronunciations (gonna, wanna, woulda), idioms, slang and unusual vocabulary.

Among these innovations are the following: VARIABLE SPEED AUDIOA student that has difficulty with speed of speech can choose to listen to the audio at slowed pace until he develops an ear for spoken English. Once he develops that ear, he can listen to it at the original speed. TRANSCRIPT IN SYNC WITH AUDIOAs the student listens to the audio, a synchronized transcript will appear on his screen.

If a student misses something as he listens, he simply pauses the audio, scrolls back through the transcript on his screen and replays it. EMBEDDED LINKSA student who has difficulty with idioms, colloquial pronunciations, or unusual vocabulary, is able to click on embedded links in the transcript for immediate clarification. The audio pauses momentarily while the student reads the clarification and then resumes. In addition to the audio, there is an array of study materials within each chapter of the story to reinforce learning, including vocabulary lists, comprehension quizzes and grammar lessons based on grammatical errors in the audio. We believe this series of apps will be tremendously helpful to students struggling with listening comprehension.

Apple allows us to give away a limited number of free downloads. If you are interested in taking a look at the app, just send email me at pr@mapmuse.com and I’ll provide you a promotional code. Below you will find links to four of the apps on iTunes Store, where you’ll find additional information and screenshots:

Dragnet - https://itunes.apple.com/US/app/id571324367

Gunsmoke - https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/id571342060

Our Miss Brooks - https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/id571377725X

Minus 1 -

Lastly, we would greatly appreciate any feedback you have regarding these apps. We have put a lot of work into creating a useful tool for the EFL student and we hope to develop even better apps in the future. Warm regards,

MapMuse, Inc.

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