Sarah Banks, Staff Writer
Want to learn a new language on your own time? Free to users and accessible with a few easy steps, the Mango Language-Learning Program is now available through the Warren Wilson College library database webpage. The registration process is simple and painless, requiring only an e-mail address and a password. Once registered, there are thirty-four languages from which one may choose, including Hindi, Turkish, Russian, Arabic, Greek, German and several ESL programs.
The website offers users either “basic” or “complete” language lessons, offering a quick run-through of polite conversation or a comprehensive language study.
“Students in many different study-abroad courses and programs have told us either that they wished they had more familiarity with the language before traveling or a way to keep up their skills when they returned,” said Sharon Withrow, assistant director of international programs.
Library Director Christine Nugent noted that the program would not be possible without help from other departments. The Ellis Library, International Programs Office, International Student Advisor’s Office and the Department of Modern Languages all collaborated to fund the program. The library searched for a suitable program for some time but did not have the budget to cover such a project without assistance from other sources. The help of the other departments and the options within the Mango Language-Learning Program made it the optimal choice for all parties.
“I was really pleased to see the community coming together to make this happen,” said Nugent.
The library staff stressed that student feedback is important.
“One thing that we’d like to get across to students is that we want to hear feedback from them about Mango,” said David O. Bradshaw, user services librarian. “Do they like it? Is it useful? I think we view this as a trial-run subscription, so we definitely want to know what folks think of it.”
The program is accessible to any current student, faculty or staff member. To gain access from off-campus, students, staff or faculty should contact the reference desk for a username and password. The program will be also available in the summer to all students returning the following fall.