To promote the students’ skills and learning requires researching the best pedagogies and developing new, computerized tools to aid students. It is important to support the opportunity (in terms of time and funding) to research, publish, and present, in order to be up to date in the field with the latest trends in language, education and scientific communication. Already, two tools have been developed as a result of interdisciplinary research conducted in the department: the De-jargonizer (Rakedzon et al, 2017) rates the level of vocabulary and terms in a text, and divides the words into three levels so a text can be written at the appropriate level for the intended audience; and a plug-in for WORD that helps students with their academic writing based on the Technion academic writing course – MySupervisor.
We would also like to promote interdisciplinary research initiatives, such as linguistics and computer science, linguistics and mathematics, English literature and ethics, English literature and social issues.
English and Learning Disabilities
A further field to be developed is remedial teaching in the English language. A special program focusing on one-on-one tutoring of MA students with learning disabilities started in 2013. It tended to 5 students per semester and yielded significant improvement in their mastery of the language. Due to lack of staff, the program ended in 2020. We would like to resume and expand it to undergraduate students. In addition, we would like to conduct research, possibly in collaboration with the Unit for the Advancement of Students and/or the Faculty of Education in Science and Technology, which will add to the growing body of knowledge concerning learning disabilities and the learning of foreign languages.