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AMEP Research Centre

Issues in English 1

Issues in English 1
Produced by Protea Textware Pty Ltd

Issues in English (1) has been designed for learners aged 12+ and this CD Rom is especially suitable for adults in four levels: ISLPR 0+ to 3 / CGEA 1 to 4 / NRS 1 to 4

It covers a range of skills such as reading, writing, spelling and dictation, listening, grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation using a variety of self-paced activities with immediate feedback.

The topics in Issues in English 1 are Australian topics covering the issues of animal rights, discrimination, euthanasia, gambling, growing old, public transport, smoking and the environment.

The CD Rom features 32 "talking head" video clips of people speaking accompanied by 20 activities on each video. The "talking heads" are visually uninteresting but students can focus on the written transcript, not the video clip itself.

Transcript can be viewed while listening and meanings of words appear when the mouse is passed over the highlighted words/phrases.

Students will enjoy the topics and self-paced format as it is non-threatening yet challenging. Self-paced learning and testing modes contain printable worksheets and results. The topics are culturally enlightening as they stimulate group and class discussion. Diverse activities complement each appropriate level to challenge computer and language skills.

At the beginning, students need to learn how to adjust the volume settings on the computer and the program icons for navigation , for example , exit, print (so that they will not print everything) and how to exit "help". They also need assistance on how to do use the computer, for example, "drag & drop", where to "click & type" and instructions for the activities but students will quickly become confident with the computer, program and language skills.

To take full advantage of all the listening and speaking activities, headphones and microphones are required but the speaking exercises could be done with a tutor.

Apart from the above issues, the programs are interesting and provide a pleasant learning experience. I find Issues in English 1 an excellent quality program.

Reviewed by Norma King Koi, Brisbane North Institute of TAFE, Brisbane