Quiz Tree: Foreign Languages provides multiple choice quizzes for second language learners of French, Spanish, Portuguese, Japanese, Chinese and Italian.This website focuses on vocabulary practice through quizzes in French. Various topics are addressed, ranging from basic vocabulary, numbers and colors to occupations, house and descriptions. On each quiz slide, the user can read and hear a French word, which he/she has to match with its English translation among four options.
Type of Material:
The multiple choice quizzes can be used in-class, assigned as homework, or taken by individuals who wish to improve their language skills on their own.
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Identify Major Learning Goals:
Quiz Tree: Foreign Languages is intended to allow second language learners to enrich their vocabulary and improve their pronunciation/listening comprehension of new vocabulary words in the target language.
Target Student Population:
• Elementary Language courses, individuals wanting to practice and learn basic vocabulary
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills:
The multiple-choice quizzes for French provide electronic flashcards on a wide variety of useful topics including basic greetings, family members, food items, methods of transportation, the house, medical terms, numbers, colors, professions, school, clothing, and telling time. • The quizzes are clear, easy to use and do not require any other material or previous knowledge • The ability to download a PDF version of the quizzes can help learn and review the material
Unfortunately, the French vocabulary quizzes contain several errors and inconsistencies. Some of the errors are related to the target language itself: an incorrect translation is provided (the correct answer for "mignon" is given as "handsome"). In other cases, the French word is spelled incorrectly: "l'étusiant" rather than "l'étudiant". Still in others, the French word is missing an accent: "ecouter" instead of "écouter". Sometimes the article is provided before the noun, and sometimes it is not: "cousin" but "le cadet." When the article is provided, there does not appear to be any consistency as to whether it is a definite or indefinite article: In the food flashcards, "glass" is translated as "le verre" whereas coconut is translated as "une noix de coco." There are also problems with the format of several of the quizzes: in a number of the quizzes related to telling time, two of the four multiple-choice options are identical, yet only one is counted a correct when the user clicks on it (i.e. 4:55 is listed twice for "il est cinq heures moins cinq", yet if you click on the second listing, your answer is marked as being incorrect). For some reason, the food flashcards are English-to-French rather than French-to-English, and the user is therefore unable to hear any of the French food vocabulary words read aloud. Finally, sometimes the French voice does not read the vocabulary word that is written on the flashcard: The user sees "un magasin de vidéo" but the voice says, "un magasin de vélo."
Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool
In most of the French vocabulary quizzes, the vocabulary word is read aloud by a native French speaker, which helps to reinforce the pronunciation of the word along with its written form and English meaning. The fact that the quizzes are organized by theme would make them easy to integrate into a course assignment. In addition, the quizzes contain, on average, 10 questions, which means that they can be taken (and retaken) rather quickly.
• These quizzes mostly give isolated words. Users do not have the opportunity to learn how to build full sentences based on these words.
• The vocabulary used is not based on any textbook, which makes it hard for instructors use in their courses
• The vocabulary learnt is limited to isolated and basic words that often have English cognates
Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty
• Quizzes are easy to use and visually pleasing
The format of the French vocabulary quizzes is aesthetically pleasing.
On the site's home page for Foreign Languages, it is difficult to distinguish between which links are part of Quiz Tree and which links are simply going to send the user to an advertiser's site.
Other Issues and Comments:
If the errors in the French vocabulary flashcards were corrected, this site could be a very useful tool for French instructors and French language learners.
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