Posts Tagged ‘sanako-study-1200’

How speech recognition speaking practice integrates with LRC activities for oral practice, assessment and ePortfolio

  1. My use of Windows7 Automated Speech recognition in 7 languages integrates with
  2. other LRC activities for oral practice, assessment and ePortfolio.
    1. A lower-key and more frequent homework assignment
    2. than our Kaltura student presentation webcam recordings NRBFS (using a URL shortener, as in,
    3. and with better feedback than our voice-insert recordings with Sanako mV1DR,
  3. these homework assignments prepare for in-class assessments
    1. chapter tests with textbook audio recordings z2KYtk,
    2. screencast recordings of student presentations Cmd3gQ, pair conversations l6H12, and question-response midterm/final exams ZL7DG using Sanako digital audio lab.
  4. All except Kaltura (incompatible with Mahara) also produce language learner ePortfolio pieces.

How to add control of student sound/recording volume, sidetone, restart, and more to a Sanako Study 1200 environment, using the Launch Program feature and AutoIt

2014/08/22 1 comment
  1. UPDATE: A Windows7 (and Vista) version – which also uses a simplified deployment mechanism – is in the works, check back for a new post here.
  2. In refining our Sanako classroom setup, we improved the control, that the Sanako Study 1200 affords the teacher over the student clients in the computerized classroom,
  3. by extending the built-in Launch Program feature
  4. with custom-made executables (realized in AutoIt V3) that can control the volume (here on Windows XP SP3).
  5. This it how it works: Launch any of the programs (what each does is in its name) to any individual/group of students or the entire class in order to do any of these things on the student computers that the Sanako out of the box does not allow you to control, and that I often wish I could do when teaching language classes in a Sanako (or other computerized classroom management system) environment, like
    1. controlling the volume of what the students
      1. hears
      2. records
    2. turning the student sidetone (= echoing back the student microphone into the student headset) on and off
    3. starting/pausing Windows Media Player
    4. launching/closing quiz files in MS-Word
    5. restarting an entire (misbehaving) student applications
  6. Here is what we have: sanako-launch-programs-autoit1
  7. Here is how using what we have looks like:
  8. sanako-launch-programs-autoit
  9. You can now request the download of these language lab enhancing programs, including source code, here.

Request to download the digital audio lab classroom audio configuration on the fly, program and source for Windows XP

UPDATE: A Windows7 (and Vista) version is in the works, check back for a new post here.

Back to description of reset of classroom audio configuration on the fly program

Protected: LRC à la carte II: Choose from our start-of-term class inductions

2014/07/15 Enter your password to view comments.

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Interpreting against audio files sources with live feedback in Sanako Study 1200

  1. How will we be recording
    1. Individual recording
      1. Voice insert: student control how much time they have interpreting
        1. students can stop the source where they want, they can rewind and review the source, they can overwrite their initial interpretation, they can interpret at the speed they want.
        2. We could insert cues at sentence ends in the source; and also (but little need,) slow the source down or insert pauses
      2. Student track
        1. students have to follow along at the speed of the source can stop the source where they want, they can rewind and review the source;  they can with some difficulty overwrite their initial interpretation/
        2. More difficult: We likely should slow the source down or insert pauses
    2. Model imitation: like an exam,
      1. students all speak in parallel, without individual control
      2. Most difficult: We most likely need to slow the source audio down, including inserting pauses as "breathers")
  2. What audio track will we be collecting?
    1. If student saves manually, student can save either or both tracks , but need to be taught.
    2. If model imitation, we collect only student recording.
    3. If lock player/collect buffer, we collect both source and student track
    4. Listener can focus on one track by controlling the balance during playback:
    5. Listener can also split the audio tracks (= delete the source track),
      1. more easily (file / save as) in the sanako recorder
      2. More
  3. Teacher listening in
    1. Is always possible,
      1. just click the student icon in the classroom layout
      2. or use screen control / autoscan: the audio switches with the screen, this has a bit of overhead, and our computers are network are not the fastest, but we made some changes to optimize speed; best reserved for when you also need to see the student’s screen.
  4. Teacher speaking: Teacher providing on-the-fly feedback via "Discuss":
    1. Playlist Launch and open ( then you can stop each individual student (students do not work in sync, remote-controlled) .
    2. Model imitation ( : then you cannot talk to one (all students record in sync).
    3. Teacher providing non-live feedback :
      1. Teacher can provide aural feedback later when grading the student submissions from your office pc:
        1. How a teacher can use Sanako voice insert to easily add spoken comments to students’ Sanako oral proficiency exams- step–by step
        2. We recorded here how it is being done for Business Spanish: Protected: How a teacher can give students aural feedback on oral exams using the Sanako Study 1200 Lite Recorder
        3. For that voice-insert, you need to install the Sanako Recorder on your office PC.

    Slowing source audio for interpreting classes in the digital audio lab

    1. To judge from listening to Simult. Lesson 1, text 2 on Acebo Interpreter’s Edge (ISBN 1880594323), I am wondering  whether some of our students (= personalization) would need this audio to be simplified, to gain the benefit of a well-adjusted i+1?  I can pre-process the audio :
      1. Where the flatlines = natural pauses are in above graph, insert a audio signal as where students can press voice insert recording,  Example: clip_image001
      2. We can also  insert a pause and a cue at the beginning and end to set students a limit how long they can interpret, but if students operate  the player manually, there is no teacher control and no exam condition, and the students having to manage the technology tends to distract from the language practice.
      3. Slow down the audio without changing the pitch (just have to make sure not to overdo it, else will sound like drunken speech  – my time stretching software would be able to avoid “drunken speech” syndrome, but I have not been able to work on it since briefly for IALLT in Summer 2011 for 3 years now…)
        1. clip_image002
        2. clip_image003
      4. We can use this adjusted with the Sanako grouping feature to personalize instruction (find the right i+1 for each of your student, useful if there are considerable variations in their proficiency): How to group students into sessions  (in 3 different ways)

    Our tutorplayer installation which comes with Sanako study 1200 tutor on the teacher computer is broken

    1. image
    2. What’s with the non-existent path hard-coded here? Missing path delimiter? But that is not enoguh to fix the path: There is a student.settings in C:\ProgramData\Sanako\Study\Student\Tutor.Settings – not sure why tutorplayer is not accessing this file.
    3. Which is double annoying since I just had to enable MFF as default recording save format for some teachers that need dual track support which is buggy with MP3.

    No usable dual track audio from Sanako Study 1200 version 7 when saving as MP3?

    1. We have not been using the dual track recording capabilities of the Sanako much here yet, or have relied on the diachronic separation of channels that the Sanako voice-insert mode provides. Now, however, we want to apply the Sanako to consecutive interpreting in our MA program where there is more of a need for the reviewing student/grading teacher to switch between source and target language on the recorded dual-track audio.
    2. As far as I remember, dual track recording, one of the core features of the digital audio lab, used to work out of the box in Sanako (up to version 5 on XP?), but to my surprise, no more when I saved a student exercise, the left and right channel were identical (and the source and interpreter voices very hard to separate, the entire interpretation impossible to follow).
      1. I had noticed before that with version 7 (at least, we skipped 6) all recording was dual channel, but simply duplicated the left and right audio channel (isn’t this a waste of bandwidth and storage resources?).
    3. I tested our 7.1 installation (on Windows 7 64-bit), by changing the advanced collection settings, for an interpreting audio file, clapping from the teacher station:
    4. First I changed the tracks to be saved:
    5. Test1: image.This mixes student and program down onto each channel: image
    6. Test 2: clip_image004, Program track only, as expected (no clapping)clip_image005
    7. Test 3: clip_image006 Student track, as expected (only clapping – pretty much)clip_image007
    8. Workaround: After trying whether I can save manually from the student station, it occurred to me to change the file format also
      1. WMA:
        1. dual track
          1. works with “Save AS” from the student.exe (where the mp# options is conspicuously absent, or am I missing something): image
          2. won’t work with “collect” from the tutor.exe: both tracks (saving both is – fortunately – only an option for “save as“ WMA from the  student exe. You can also save only the student track as WMA) get mixed down to one (and the student is far too soft) , as you can witness here: image
        2. WMA is a technically nice, efficient (small file size)  and widely supported format, but does require an add-on installation on the MacOS X, not to mention mobile devices.
        3. WMA on Windows plays in Windows Media Player, but from version 12, Windows Media Player has no easy way to adjust the balance anymore, you have to dig relatively deeply into the OS (mmsys.cpl) itself.
      2. MFF:
        1. dual track works also (saving single track is actually not an option in this format)both using
          1. the student recorder “Save as” (which can also mix both tracks, see above)
          2. “collect” from the tutor.exe: you can fade in the left and right channel with the balance tool that you find in the student recorder to the left of the timeline.
        2. Unfortunately,
            1. the file size quickly gets out of hand: image
            2. and for no obvious reason, the biggest here is 12 times the size, but not longer than the smallest, and also only a 5-minute recording (I know that mff stores also the user’s bookmark information, but  this can hardly be the culprit): image
            3. compare this with how WMA compresses: image
          1. MFF is a proprietary format, which only the Sanako recorder can play. This may be a nice way to get more adoption of the free Sanako student recorder which is great for language learning. However, I had not originally planned on forcing my users to use it who are most comfortable with mp3.
      3. In addition, I now have a the problem with how to switch the Sanako default collection to MFF for interpreting teachers without confusing regular users.