Educational Technology & Society 1(1) 1998
ISSN 1436-4522

SMILE - Strategies for Managing an Independent Learning Environment

(Project Overview)

Lead institution: University of Hull
Partner Institutions: The Nottingham Trent University, University of Ulster

Project aims

SMILE is a three-year project supported by FDTL - the HEFCE Fund for Development of Teaching and Learning - which seeks to bridge the gap, identified in several of the overview reports on the quality assessment of modern languages, between the provision of self-access facilities and student use of these facilities by:
  • ensuring a better match between the provision of resources for modern languages and studentsí perceptions of their learning needs
  • raising awareness of the important role of language advising amongst teaching and support staff
  • involving learners and teachers in the effective use of independent learning strategies in and out of the classroom
  • sharing resources which proved useful in supporting language learning (leaflets on language learning strategies, templates for tandem learning, needs analysis etc)
  • creating an infrastructure to deliver credit-bearing modules in language learning strategies and a Diploma in Language Advising

The SMILE Approach

SMILEís aims will be achieved through:
  • the creation of an electronic learner support network
  • the expansion of the language advisersí network
  • the delivery of a series of workshops involving staff and students
  • careful monitoring of the uses of self-access resources and their relationship to language performance
  • the publication of five newsletters
  • the creation of regional centres across England and in Northern Ireland to introduce, discuss and evaluate the concept of independent learning and language advising
  • the preparation of a manual of good practice in the implementation of independent learning
  • the development and establishment of a Diploma in Language Advising

Other SMILE activities

  • shadowing sessions with selected members of staff
  • support of existing activities in the area of language advising and independent learning
  • surveys about the use of resources
  • training sessions on language advising
  • practical assistance in the introduction of language advising


For further information about SMILE, or a preliminary informal SMILE visit to discuss your Institutionís needs and the possibility of a workshop, please contact:

Project Leader - Marina Mozzon-McPherson
Tel: 01482-465862       Fax: 01482-466180
Project Secretary - Liz Bradley
Tel: 01482-465862       Fax: 01482-466180

University of Hull, Language Institute, Hull HU6 7RX   United Kingdom