Common Misconceptions about Voice Assistants

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by Anna Weninger

Have you ever wondered what the fuss about AI is all about? Have you also wondered how you can REALLY use voice assistants in the classroom? Using voice assistants such as Alexa in the first place is anything but straightforward when talking about ethics in IT. However, even if you do decide to use Alexa, there are already several misconceptions to overcome.

In this video, I will both discuss common misconceptions about voice assistants, like Amazon’s Alexa, as well as show that it is so much more than just a search engine. All in an attempt to get the ELT and (in particular) LTSIG community together to make the most out of the technology we’re surrounded with.

This is not an advert for Amazon. Except, as opposed to others, it just happens they have opened up their voice assistant technology to everybody). What it is, though, is a call for ELT to become part of the language technology revolution: don’t just use it, but make it your own.

Anna Weninger holds two Master’s degrees for teaching, one in Computer Science, the other in English Language and Linguistics. After working in the IT industry for many years, she now works as Academic Coordinator and lecturer in Vienna, with a focus on ESP, CALL, Blended Learning, Computer Literacy and Natural Language Processing. In September 2018, together with a partner she created and launched the free Alexa Skill “MasterEnglish Vocab”, which is currently being trialled at an Austrian university. Click here for more.

For more on AI in ELT, there is a full review from our online event last November. In the Members’ Area, there is also a recording of Joshua Underwood’s session on this in Liverpool.

AI (and voice assistants) is a topic that we will return to as a SIG, so watch this space and our social media for a possible future event.

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