According to the U.S. Census Bureau there were an estimated 46.9 million Spanish speakers in the U.S. in 2008, and by 2050 there will be 132.7 million, nearly one third (32.4%) of the population. The Acceso project is based on the conviction that language teaching must evolve to meet these rapidly changing local, national, and global social realities. It endeavors to answer the call of the Modern Language Association for innovative language curricula that enable students to develop translingual and transcultural competence, the ability not only to comprehend the written and spoken language, but also “to comprehend speakers of the target language as members of foreign societies and to grasp themselves as Americans—that is, as members of a society that is foreign to others…[and] to relate to fellow members of their own society who speak languages other than English.” By placing the creation and implementation of this new curriculum at the center of the Spanish Basic Language Program, Acceso also endeavors to answer the MLA’s call for graduate programs to provide “substantive training in language teaching and in the use of new technologies.”*
Acceso is intended as a complete curriculum for intermediate-level learners of Spanish but it can certainly be used as a foundational text or as a supplement to other intermediate and advanced curricula. The materials on this website are provided freely to the public as an Open Educational Resource (OER) in support of broader educational affordability and access. Instructors may also request free access to detailed lesson plans, rubrics for the evaluation of student work, and reliable instruments for measuring student progress and learning outcomes. Those free materials are supplemented by an optional commercial workbook called Acceso Hub: Forma y Función.
The specific short-term objectives of Acceso are to:
- create a cost-effective and innovative, web-based curriculum that answers the MLA’s call for the development of transcultural and translingual competence among language learners.
- provide hands-on training for graduate teaching assistants to use technology in creating and refining this curriculum.
- provide an online forum for instructors to collaborate and discuss innovative pedagogical approaches to language teaching and learning; and
- provide outreach and support materials to secondary and post-secondary institutions that wish to implement the Acceso curriculum and to contribute to its development.
The longer-term objectives of Acceso are to:
- foster collaboration with other institutions through our wiki-based content development area and discussion fora.
- provide both opportunity and data for large-scale quantitative and qualitative inquiry into the extent to which specific goals laid out by the MLA are accomplished.
- serve as a model that can be readily applied to the study of other languages.
Acceso began in 2009 as a collaboration between the Spanish language program and the staff of the Ermal Garinger Academic Resource Center at the University of Kansas. The current website, envisioned as a new edition of the curriculum, is part of a four-year project funded through the Open Language Resource Center at KU, one of sixteen federally-funded centers working to increase the nation's capacity to teach and learn foreign languages. Founded in 2018, the OLRC focuses on the creation of OER for language learners at the secondary and post-secondary level. As one of KU's first projects in foreign language OER, it is fitting that the new edition of the Acceso curriculum is the flagship project of the new OLRC grant.
This website includes materials developed under grant P229A180008 from the U.S. Department of Education. However, those contents do not necessarily represent the policy of the U.S. Department of Education, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal Government.
*Modern Language Association Ad Hoc Committee on Foreign Languages, “Foreign Languages and Higher Education: New Structures for a Changed World.” Profession 2007, pp. 234-245. [https://www.mlajournals.org/doi/abs/10.1632/prof.2007.2007.1.234]
How to Cite AccesoAn individual module:
Glasset, Zach. "Cristina Martínez: Chef, Inmigrante y Madre." Acceso, Open Language Resource Center, https://acceso.ku.edu/unidad1/almanaque/chef.shtml", Accessed [insert date].The work as a whole:
Rossomondo, Amy, editor, Acceso, Open Language Resource Center, https://acceso.ku.edu, Accessed [insert date].