NovaUCD-based e-learning company RendezVu has been awarded the European Language Label 2012 for its next-generation English-language learning platform ExamSpeak, making RendezVu one of only four Irish projects to receive the 2012 label.
The European Label, which is co-ordinated by the European Commission, is awarded every year in more than 20 European countries to projects which demonstrate innovative ways of teaching and learning languages.
Seán Ó Cuirreáin, Ireland’s first Coimisinéir Teanga, presented the award, which is managed in Ireland by Léargas, at an event at the Marino Institute of Education, Dublin.
He said the award-winning projects provide a potential source of inspiration for others working with different languages and in different contexts.
Paul Groarke, founder of RendezVu, expressed delight at having received the European Language Label for ExamSpeak.
“As well as validating the innovation within the product, it also shows the potential for the transfer of our product to other European languages," Groarke said.
ExamSpeak is an English practice environment which uses language-learning techniques to prepare students for their English speaking exam.
ExamSpeak replicates the speaking exam in real-time with real questions and responses and enables students to develop the English-language skills they need to succeed in the exam.
ExamSpeak also provides authentic interaction, based on the learner’s own words and ideas. This allows them to increase their confidence by practising as often as they like in exam conditions, but without the pressure of the exam.
The other three Irish recipients of the European Language Label 2012 are Legal Practice Irish Courses, Education Department, Law Society of Ireland; Lingo Club, Letterkenny Institute of Technology; and Community School of reading and blogging scheme, Pobalscoil Chorca Dhuibhne.