Create, collaborate, and communicate in a second language

Digital literacies in a distance education Spanish course

Silvia Rodriguez Sabater & Laura Plotts, College of Charleston


Click the slide above to view the presentation on an external site. To ask the presenters a question about their presentation, please add a comment at the bottom of this page between October 6 and October 10. Presenters will check for and reply to questions at the end of each symposium day.


It has been established that L2 learners need to have effective skills to make, share and negotiate meaning in different digital modes (visual, audio, and textual) to be able to create, collaborate, and communicate in an L2. As college students and future graduates, they are expected to acquire these skills and be multilingual digital literates. Therefore, it is not uncommon nowadays to have digital learners in charge of their language learning process with the assistance of their instructors as guides and facilitators (Durán-Cerda, 2010). Particularly, students in this course had to use multimodal digital literacy tools for the development of creativity, collaboration and communication ( in Spanish as an L2.

The poster presentation will describe an upper-level, distance education Spanish course named “Service Learning: Hispanics in the United States”; intended student audience; course objectives including the further development of online digital literacies in Spanish as an L2; types of materials and delivery format as a distance education course; and examples of digital tools used to further develop interpersonal, interpretive, and presentational modes of communication proposed by ACTFL (2012). One of the tools used for this purpose was VoiceThread, a cloud application that allows one to create, share, comment, and discuss documents, presentations, images, audio files, and videos. For instance, students were able to create (individually or in group) both visual and auditory narratives using images, text, video and audio, and later share those with the instructor and their peers using interpersonal, interpretive, and presentational modes of communication.

Silvia Rodriguez Sabater

Associate Professor of Spanish
College of Charleston

Laura Plotts

Instructional Technologist
College of Charleston