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 Word Annotations for Vocabulary Education

The goal of the tecWAVE project is to develop and test a web application that provides middle school students with explicit scaffolding for word learning through multimedia multilingual word annotation.

When too many words are unknown in a text, comprehension suffers. tecWAVE takes advantage of the Internet to provide "in the moment" vocabulary assistance for struggling readers.

In tecWAVE, academic texts are input into the system and, as students read through the text, certain words are highlighted allowing students to click on them. The highlighted words are selected by the application based upon a variety of factors including age, reading level, and native language.

When the student clicks on a word, a pop-up window displays several definitions of the word along with several pictures the system associates with the word. The pop-up definitions are presented in both the student's native language and in English.

We believe that explicit scaffolding for vocabulary learning through tecWAVE has the potential to help develop students’ word knowledge and comprehension of text. This technology, while of use to all readers, could prove particularly useful for English language learners.

The tecWAVE Project is funded by Institute of Education Sciences and the National Center for Educational Research Educational Technology Research Grant # R305A080596 (U.S. Department of Education), FY2008-20011.

The tecWAVE Project is also sponsered by the Center for Information Technology Research in the Interest of Society

This research reported here was supported by the Institute of Education Sciences, US Department of Education, through Grant R305A00596 to University of California Santa Cruz. Any opinions, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this paper are the author's, and do not necessarily reflect those of the US Department of Education.

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