Teletandem Project

    Student using Teletandem

    Students at Georgetown use Skype to connect with students in São Paulo, trading conversation in Portuguese and English. Teletandem helps the students develop language skills, cultural knowledge, and international friendships.

    Since 2010, students taking Portuguese at Georgetown have participated in the Teletandem Brasil Project. Students split their class period between speaking English and Portuguese with their counterparts in Brazil. They also exchange written blog posts for comments and corrections from their peers abroad. Moving beyond textbook dialogues to real-life conversations helps students to prepare for future study abroad opportunities and to become more fluent earlier in the course of study. Students find that they not only develop conversational skills through their practice with Teletandem, but they also become more reflective as learners. Acting simultaneously as teachers of English and as students of Portuguese gives the students a unique perspective on the process of learning a language.

    With Teletandem, I feel more like a conversation partner than a learner or tutor.

    Student, Intensive Intermediate Portuguese

    In a traditional class, students would read articles or watch videos and discuss them with their classmates, but with Teletandem, students can interact about any topic that interests them, so they are highly motivated. All of a sudden, the students are having real experiences in the language and are so much more engaged.

    Michael Ferreira (Spanish and Portuguese)