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DOTI: Databank of Oral Teletandem Interactions

© 2016 Solange Aranha and Paola Leone (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0)
DOTI: Databank of Oral
Teletandem Interactions
Solange Aranha1 and Paola Leone2
This contribution aims at (1) discussing the characteristics of
collecting, ling and storing data to have a databank of oral
interactions between university students whose main objective is the
learning of a second language through teletandem; and (2) dening
the steps for further collections and storage. Our data are Skype
sessions of foreign language learners who interact via Voice Over
Internet Protocol (VOIP) with a procient partner in the language
they are learning. Our databank aims at (1) giving value to teletandem
as a situated learning context, (2) substantiating the research carried
out in the eld, and (3) offering other researchers the possibility to
access data to conrm or refute published research. We rst dene
a schema for interpreting teletandem sessions according to the
Interaction Space (IS) Model as dened by Chanier and colleagues
(2014). Subsequently, we discuss metadata concerning contexts
(e.g. description of the university and of the language courses) and
learning scenarios (e.g. objectives, materials).
Keywords: teletandem, databank, oral communication, language learning, interaction
space model, computer mediated communication.
1. Universidade Estadual Paulista - São José Do Rio Preto, Brasil FAPESP # 2015/02048-6;
2. Università del Salento, Lecce, Italy;
How to cite this chapter: Aranha, S., & Leone, P. (2016). DOTI: Databank of Oral Teletandem Interactions. In S. Jager,
M. Kurek & B. O’Rourke (Eds), New directions in telecollaborative research and practice: selected papers from the second
conference on telecollaboration in higher education (pp. 327-332).
Chapter 40
1. Introduction
Teletandem (Vassallo & Telles, 2006) is a form of computer mediated
interaction by which two students, procient in two different languages,
interact via VoIP technology and/or via text chat. This telecollaborative
practice respects the principles proposed by Brammerts (1996): autonomy,
separation of languages and reciprocity. Teletandem is nowadays a teaching/
learning context which has been institutionalized in different universities
around the world and has become a relevant research eld in applied
linguistics. Over the years, researchers have been collecting, transcribing and
analyzing data in different ways according to the needs of their studies (c.f.
As part of a shared project between UNESP and University of Salento, we
are now aiming at building a databank with common characteristics (same
methodology of collection and transcription) which may be useful for
researchers in planning their tasks within telecollaboration activities, in
understanding how telecollaboration works and may be optimized, and in
developing linguistic research within telecollaboration environments, among
others. Our rst step is to apply to teletandem data the IS model (Chanier
et al., 2014), by which some researchers are trying to characterize different
Computer-Mediated Communication (CMC) genres (mostly written, such as
Facebook). IS is dened as “an abstract concept, located in time […] where
interactions between a set of participants occur within an online location
(Chanier et al., 2014, p. 5).
Considering that teletandem is organized around various tasks in which a
language instructor and a class group are involved, the concept of Learning
Scenario (LS) becomes relevant, since it describes different task sequences
(Mangenot, 2008; Foucher, 2010). LS helps us determine the characteristics that
underlie teletandem practice. In this paper, we show how these concepts (IS
and LS) are applied to our data and how they can contribute to dene Data
of Oral Teletandem Interactions (DOTI) metadata which are mostly created for
interrogating the databank.
Solange Aranha and Paola Leone
2. Methodology
At UNESP and at University of Salento, teletandem is not a stand alone practice
but it comes together with other tasks, carried out both via Information and
Communication Technologies (ICT) and in the classroom. Each teletandem
session takes about one hour and occurs once a week. At UNESP, Brazilian
students, whose mother tongue is Portuguese, interact with American students,
procient in English. At UNISALENTO, Italian students interact with British
Both contexts – UNESP and Unisalento (and partner institutions) – have
students from different courses who are learning the language and practising it
via teletandem sessions. The levels of prociency vary and are not a key factor to
be enrolled in the activity. Each partnership usually lasts from 8 to 15 sessions,
depending on the learning scenario. All participants signed a consent form
developed within the exigencies of each university – for video recording oral
sessions3 which are stored4.
DOTI contains data from 2012 to 2015, in a total of over 650 hours of
conversation (Portuguese and English Italian and English). Some data have
been transcribed. Among other communicative data so far described during
conferences and in literature following the IS model, DOTI is peculiar since it is
compiled by synchronous multimodal interactions during which different modes
are employed for communication (text, gestures, oral, images, etc.). Thus, DOTI
data represent a complex environment.
Teletandem interactions are part of different learning scenarios which, in both
institutions, are shaped in macro and microtasks (objectives and description).
UNESP and Unisalento share the macrotasks’ aim which is preparing students
to participate actively in (computer mediated) oral interactions with a procient
speaker and be aware of all the linguistic and cultural strategies that such a
3. So far we have been using Evaer, a capture Skype video and audio data to record (see
4. In Brazil, a detailed description of storage process can be found in Aranha, Luvizari-Murad and Moreno (2015).
Chapter 40
practice involves. In the Brazilian and Italian universities, such an objective is
reached via different microtask sequences carried out during mediation sessions
and computer mediated oral sessions.
These mentioned features are useful guidelines for dening metadata.
3. Discussion
Some metadata will be presented: rst of all, those concerning teletandem as IS
and secondly, those related to the learning scenario.
DOTI will be described according to the data type it contains:
interactions are dyadic; teletandem involves just 2 participants;
the environment is synchronous (as opposed to non-synchronous such
as blogs);
the time frame is one session (usually from 50 to 60 minutes);
the communication modality is via VoIP technology;
communication modes are different such as oral, written via text chat as
well as gestures and emoticons.
Specically, concerning each time frame (i.e. session), the option is given to
choose among languages used for communication (e.g. English, Italian) and the
number of online sessions (e.g. S1, S2, S3).
Regarding participants, data can be interrogated according to student´s course at
the university (e.g. UNESP), gender, and language level (broadly assessed based
on performance during teletandem sessions).
In relation to the discourse type, DOTI will be described using free discussion,
topic discussion, and task completion (e.g. information/opinion gap).
Solange Aranha and Paola Leone
Metadata for LS are typology of tasks (alternate monolingual interaction or
intercomprehension), integrated and non-integrated teletandem modalities
(Aranha & Cavalari, 2014), descriptions (aims, materials), teachers roles, and
macrotask and microtask sequences.
DOTI will allow researchers within teletandem contexts to be more coherent
in generating, collecting and annotating procedures and thus, will save them
time to analyse such multi-faceted, multi-tasking environments more deeply
and thoroughly.
Although all the participants have signed consent forms5 and are enrolled
in one of the courses or universities that participate in the Teletandem
Network (Leone & Telles, 2016), there are still ethical issues concerned with
identication in the future. Hence, we are now considering if the degree of
anonymization can be decided on the basis of what participants opt for (i.e.
blurring or not their faces).
Besides, a wide range of data is generated every year due to the increasing
number of students that participate in the telecollaborative practice. This poses a
question of keeping the databank open for including ongoing sessions.
4. Conclusion
For developing criteria of a DOTI, two important concepts have been relevant:
interaction space and learning scenario. The former framework places DOTI in
a broader eld which includes research in corpora compiled by other computer
mediated communication such as Facebook or Twitter. Dened metadata will
allow us to cross data with other colleagues who are working in the eld and
there will be guidelines for sharing data collection principles among other
colleagues from the teletandem network.
5. The items of the terms vary from institution to institution and an agreement of common ones is still in progress.
Chapter 40
DOTI is compiled in an open access corpus perspective. We strongly believe
that it will be useful to (applied) linguists, professors, and computer experts who
want to develop software based on CMC for language learning.
Aranha, S., & Cavalari, S. (2014). A trajetória do projeto Teletandem Brasil: da modalidade
institucional não-integrada à institucional integrada. The ESPecialist, 35(2), 70-88.
Aranha, S., Luvizari-Murad, L., & Moreno, A. (2015). A criação de um banco de dados para
pesquisas sobre aprendizagem via teletandem institucional integrado (TTDII). (Com)
Textos Linguísticos, 9(12), 274-293.
Brammerts, H. (1996). Tandem language learning via the internet and the International E-Mail
tandem network. In D. Little & H. Brammerts (Eds), A guide to language learning in
tandem via the Internet. Dublin: CLCS.
Chanier, T., Poudat, C., Sagot, B., Antoniadis, G., Wigham, C. R., Hriba, L., Longhi, J.,
& Seddah, J. (2014). The CoMeRe corpus for French: structuring and annotating
heterogeneous CMC genres. Journal for Language Technology and Computational
Linguistics, 2(29), 1-30.
Foucher, A.-L. (2010). Didactique des langues-cultures et Tice : scénarios, tâches, interactions.
Université Blaise Pascal - Clermont-Ferrand II.
Leone, P., & Telles, J. (2016). The teletandem network. In T. Lewis & R. O’Dowd (Eds), Online
intercultural exchange: policy, pedagogy, practice (pp. 243-248). London: Routledge.
Mangenot, F. (2008). La question du scénario de communication dans les interactions
pédagogiques en ligne. Jocair (Journées Communication et Apprentissage Instrumentés
en Réseau, 13-26.
Vassallo, M., &Telles, J. (2006). Foreign language learning in-tandem: teletandem as an
alternative proposal in CALLT. The ESPecialist, 27(2), 189-212.
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New directions in telecollaborative research and practice: selected papers from the second conference on
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... In Brazil, every semester there are various classes participating in teletandem with singular characteristics -the learners and tasks differ from one group to another. Recently, studies have been referring to specific groups as different learning scenarios (Aranha & Leone, 2016, 2017, a concept that appears in Foucher (2010) and has been adapted to this telecollaborative project by Aranha andLeone (2016, 2017). ...
... The learning scenario describes what happens in the real learning situation; it is the description of what actually occurs in a given learning context. Aranha and Leone (2016) adapt the definition of learning scenario to teletandem in order to describe the tasks that are carried out, the participants, the interaction typology, and the length of sessions. Therefore, the description of a teletandem learning scenario involves listing the tasks and dates, the partner institutions, the students (their age, gender, university major), interaction typology, and amount of sessions. ...
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The purpose of this paper is to investigate the first 15 minutes of ten initial Teletandem Oral Sessions (iTOS), which means the first virtual encounter among speakers of different languages who want to study the each other's language. Our aim is to verify iTOS genre status within a telecollaborative learning environment. We understand genres as communicative events organized in standard structures used by members of a discourse community to achieve their communicative purposes (Swales, 1990) and assume that the teletandem context is composed of a specific community with shared objectives. A study of iTOS had first been proposed by Aranha (2014), who analyzed nine iTOS and identified some recurrence in their discoursal structure. Our data, ten iTOS, are part of a previous version of MulTeC (Multimodal Teletandem Corpus) (Aranha & Lopes, forthcoming) and participants are proficient in Portuguese and English. The video files were transcribed and the sessions were analyzed based on Aranha's (2014) findings. We identified rhetorical organization for the sessions which was similar to Aranha's, but varied depending on the learning scenarios, i.e. the learning context in which they occurred.
... Galanet et Miriadi qui ont permis de réunir des équipes ayant des objectifs distincts (Dabène, 2003 ;Degache & Tea, 2003 ;Frontini & Garbarino, 2017) -, IOTT, né de la collaboration entre deux enseignements différents, implique des étudiants de cursus qui ne sont pas identiques et met en place une coopération entre, à travers et au-delà des disciplines. 5 Il s'agit d'un Teletandem based Learning Scenario (dorénavant TTLS ; Aranha & Leone, 2016 ;, c'est-à-dire un scénario d'apprentissage basé sur des sessions de télétandem (Teletandem Oral Sessions, dorénavant TOS), par lesquelles les étudiants, grâce à l'interaction via les technologies VoIP, développent et/ou renforcent leurs capacités d'IC. Il diffère cependant des scénarios de télécollaboration orale habituels, d'une part, de par les langues utilisées (qui ne sont pas uniquement des langues nationales) et, d'autre part, quant à la modalité de communication, qui se base, dans les scénarios de télétandem (TT) classiques, sur la pratique d'une seule langue étrangère à la fois (TT à monolinguisme alterné ; Aranha & Leone, 2016. ...
... 5 Il s'agit d'un Teletandem based Learning Scenario (dorénavant TTLS ; Aranha & Leone, 2016 ;, c'est-à-dire un scénario d'apprentissage basé sur des sessions de télétandem (Teletandem Oral Sessions, dorénavant TOS), par lesquelles les étudiants, grâce à l'interaction via les technologies VoIP, développent et/ou renforcent leurs capacités d'IC. Il diffère cependant des scénarios de télécollaboration orale habituels, d'une part, de par les langues utilisées (qui ne sont pas uniquement des langues nationales) et, d'autre part, quant à la modalité de communication, qui se base, dans les scénarios de télétandem (TT) classiques, sur la pratique d'une seule langue étrangère à la fois (TT à monolinguisme alterné ; Aranha & Leone, 2016. Pour continuer avec les ressemblances et différences, ajoutons que IOTT s'appuie sur les mêmes fondements théoriques qui sous-tendent d'autres formes de télécollaboration car il met en avant la fonction formative de l'interaction sociale (Vygotsky, 1978) : "telecollaboration is now most often used to support a social learning frame designed to provide opportunities for the individual to construct his or her own abilities through collaboration with others" (Dooly, 2017, p. 174). ...
The paper aims at assessing a telecollaboration learning project named Intercompréhension Orale et Teletandem (IOTT), developed by University of Lyon 2 and University of Salento. It also points to the learning potential of plurilingual computer mediated synchronous communication across two different disciplines: an intercomprehension program and a foreign language teaching methodology course. After describing the pedagogical design (eg the activities carried out at international and local levels), the article offers a methodology (Cros, 2004) which allows authors to self-evaluate the project with regard to its effectiveness in the attainment of the desired results. Strengths and weaknesses are discussed, highlighting domains for gaining a deeper understanding of the scenario and for enhancing a theoretically enriched bottom-up analysis. The focal points of the proposed assessment are IOTT innovative features in relation to preceding Teletandem-based learning scenarios and to other intercomprehension online teaching/learning experiences. The evaluation process focuses as well on transformation and changes in educational values and practices. Data collected by means of questionnaires, learning diaries, videorecordings of oral teletandem sessions and interviews with students show learners perceptions of the experience. The assessment of IOTT is carried out bearing in mind the improvement of its pedagogical design in order to optimize learning in future teletandem projects for plurilingual education.
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The purposes of this paper are to (i) show how research in teletandem has been carried out over the years since the beginning of the Project Teletandem Brasil: Foreign Languages for All; (ii) relate the context to the possibilities of data collection; (iii) discuss methodological approaches applicable to teletandem; (iv) introduce MulTeC (Multimodal Teletandem Corpus) as an alternative for diverse types of research. We empirically demonstrate data from theses, dissertations, and papers related to methodology; present approaches of methodological research from quantitative and qualitative perspectives, presenting characteristics of each; discuss how viable individual data collection is; demonstrate how MulTeC (Multimodal Teletandem Corpus) may help researchers and be used as a model for future data collection. Finally, we share some current research using the mentioned corpus in an attempt to show an array of possibilities both from the qualitative and quantitative perspectives. RESUMO Os objetivos deste artigo são (i) mostrar como as pesquisas em teletandem têm sido conduzidas desde o início do Projeto Teletandem Brasil: Línguas Estrangeiras para Todos; (ii) relacionar o contexto às possibilidades de coleta de dados; (iii) discutir as abordagens metodológicas aplicáveis ao teletandem; (iv) apresentar o MulTeC (Multimodal Teletandem Corpus) como uma alternativa para diversos tipos de pesquisa. Demonstramos, empiricamente, dados de teses, dissertações e artigos relacionados à metodologia de pesquisa; apresentamos abordagens metodológicas tanto de perspectiva qualitativa quanto quantitativa, enfatizando as características de cada uma; discutimos a viabilidade de coleta individual de dados; demonstramos como o MulTeC pode ajudar os pesquisadores e ser usado como modelo para futuras coletas. Finalmente compartilhamos pesquisas atuais com os dados do referido corpus.
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The amount of data produced during teletandem practice can be considered extensive. Since 2011, teletandem researchers at UNESP (Sao Paolo State University) at São José do Rio Preto have been worried about compiling and organizing the data from groups of Brazilian and American students who interact via internet tools to learn each other´s language. This paper aims at describing how the data generated from 2012-2015 and collected according to the procedures described by Aranha, Luvizari-Murad and Moreno (2015) were treated and transformed into Multimodal Teletandem Corpus (MulTeC).
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The purpose of this paper is to present the road taken by the Teletandem Brasil Project (Telles, 2006) and describe the modifications that have occurred in relation to the implementation of teletandem activities, which implies changes from a non-integrated modality to an integrated one (Brammerts, 1996). In order to do so, a characterization of the initial context assumed by the project is presented – non-ntegrated institutional teletandem - in contrast with the new environment fostered by a partnership between UNESP (Universidade Estadual Paulista) and UGA (University of Georgia). This new partnership has allowed the inclusion of teletandem into the foreign language syllabus, characterizing the institutional integrated teletandem. We also show the activities derived from this new modality.
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Final version to Special Issue of JLCL (Journal of Language Technology and Computational Linguistics (JLCL, BUILDING AND ANNOTATING CORPORA OF COMPUTER-MEDIATED DISCOURSE: Issues and Challenges at the Interface of Corpus and Computational Linguistics (ed. by Michael Beißwenger, Nelleke Oostdijk, Angelika Storrer & Henk van den Heuvel)
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In a previous paper on this journal (Vassallo & Telles, 2006), we presented the theoretical bases and practical procedures of two modes of foreign language learning in-tandem approach – face-to-face tandem and e-tandem. Now, in this article, we introduce our proposal of a third mode of Tandem – the Teletandem, as an alternative in CALLT. Teletandem is a virtual Tandem that uses the online writing, reading, audio and video resources of the Windows Live Messenger. Next, we wish to outline and to argue for the applicability of the theoretical and practical principles of this third mode of Tandem within the context of a research project – Teletandem Brasil: Foreign languages for all. One of the central aims of this project is to promote, by means of the virtual space of the Teletandem, the contact of Brazilian university students with the peoples of the international community and the exchange of their respective languages and cultures.
Ce travail de synthèse d'activités de recherches, menées entre 1998 et 2010 au sein du Laboratoire de Recherche sur le Langage de l'université Blaise Pascal, se veut une illustration de la cohérence d'une posture de chercheure pour qui l'articulation étroite de la formation et de la recherche est motivée par l'appartenance à une discipline, la didactique, envisagée comme une discipline praxéologique nécessitant des allers-retours permanents entre la théorie didactique et " l'opérationnalisation " pédagogique et technologique : il met également en avant la nécessité d'une perspective transdisciplinaire sur la problématique de l'apprentissage des langues étrangères dans des dispositifs médiatisés et, par conséquent le caractère essentiel d'un travail entre linguistes, didacticiens et informaticiens. Il défend enfin la scientificité d'une recherche dite "appliquée" avec le recours à des protocoles de recherche, des outils et des critères d'évaluation solides dans des approches qui combinent le qualitatif et le quasi-expérimental.
Tandem language learning via the internet and the International E-Mail tandem network
  • H Brammerts
Brammerts, H. (1996). Tandem language learning via the internet and the International E-Mail tandem network. In D. Little & H. Brammerts (Eds), A guide to language learning in tandem via the Internet. Dublin: CLCS.
Online intercultural exchange: policy, pedagogy, practice
  • P Leone
  • J Telles
Leone, P., & Telles, J. (2016). The teletandem network. In T. Lewis & R. O'Dowd (Eds), Online intercultural exchange: policy, pedagogy, practice (pp. 243-248). London: Routledge.