Creating Innovative Approaches to Language Learning Since 1994

The Center for Applied Second Language Studies (CASLS) at the University of Oregon supports innovative world language teaching and learning. We develop research-based curricula, professional development resources, and assessments to support infrastructure and innovation.

Our resources incorporate best practices in pedagogy, the latest in second language acquisition research, and technology that’s actually usable in the classroom. We include an intentional focus on interlanguage pragmatics and social competencies.

We Believe:

  • Meaningful communication is the purpose of language learning.
  • Reflective teaching and learning facilitate lifelong discovery and growth.
  • Language learning transforms the lives of learners and those around them.
  • Language is a catalyst for change and enriches the communities in which we live.
  • It is our responsibility to support access to language learning for all.

Language Resource Centers

We are one of sixteen Title VI National Foreign Language Resource Centers across the country. These centers form a national network to support world language education. CASLS and our sister centers create curriculum, offer professional development opportunities, and conduct research on approaches to teaching languages. Download the LRC informational brochure or visit the LRC website to find resources and materials.

Our Advisory Board

The CASLS Advisory Board brings together key stakeholders who provide guidance, advice, and support. Advisory Board members serve three-year terms and meet three times each year. Our Advisory Board members are:

  • Robert Davis, Professor of Spanish, University of Oregon
  • Dennis Galvan, Vice Provost for International Affairs, University of Oregon
  • Jeff Magoto, Director of the Yamada Language Center, University of Oregon
  • Chuck Williams, Associate Vice President for Innovation, University of Oregon
  • Lynette Williams, Teacher on Special Assignment, Eugene 4J School District

Our History

CASLS began as a group of Japanese teachers in Oregon working on a three-year grant  to support Japanese language instruction. Today, we support all world language teachers and learners.

  • CASLS begins research on implementing VAuLT augmented reality kits in high school Spanish classrooms.
  • CASLS hosts the inaugural Mavericks Congress, bringing together leaders in education and business to inspire innovation and collaboration through mixed-reality gaming. Two additional Mavericks events were hosted in coordination with CALICO 2019 and ACTFL 2019 annual conferences.
  • CASLS Director Dr. Julie Sykes receives the University of Oregon Innovation and Impact Award.
  • CASLS launches VAuLT, augmented and virtual reality kits to support language learning.
  • LingroToGo hits the Apple and Google Play stores. LingroToGo, designed for Spanish learners, is the first mobile app to combine traditional language learning with pragmatics.
  • CASLS begins development for Analog U, a digital mindfulness app that prepares learners to be reflective learners.
  • CASLS receives renewed funding to continue as a Title VI Language Resource Center.
  • CASLS Associate Director Mandy Gettler receives the University of Oregon Outstanding Officer of Administration Award.
  • CASLS becomes the steward of Games2Teach, a website with curriculum for Novice-Intermediate learners of seventeen languages. The activities accompany readily available digital games.
  • CASLS launches The Bridging Project, an online language learning course in Spanish and Chinese for Advanced-low high school students. The course uses principles of game-based learning.
  • Ecopod becomes encouraged in the University of Oregon residence halls. A place-based language learning app, Ecopod engaged learners in using the target language and knowledge of their subject areas to solve problems, find collaborators, and build community.
  • CASLS launches PEBLL, a curated database of place-based experiences relevant to language learning, geotagged and categorized by language, level, and content area.
  • CASLS welcomes Dr. Julie Sykes as our director, catapulting us to the forefront of implementing technology in the language classroom.
  • CASLS joins the University of Oregon Global Studies Institute, which fosters synergies across international projects and units.
  • CASLS begins piloting Hermes, a web-based learning management system curated specifically for online language learning. Hermes used peer-to-peer scaffolding and project-based learning to make students active agents in their language learning journey.
  • CASLS creates MyChina Village, an immersive language environment in Second Life. Learners attended the virtual summer camp to interact with native Chinese speakers and complete learning quests.
  • CAJLS receives a Title VI Language Resource Center grant from the U.S. Department of Education to become the Center for Applied Second Language Studies (CASLS).
  • CASLS partners with the University of Oregon Yamada Language Center to develop a virtual language lab. ANVILL, now fully hosted and developed at the Yamada Language Center, integrates the latest technologies and helps teachers create media-rich lessons for their students.
  • The Japanese Language Program receives additional funding and becomes the Center for Japanese Language Studies (CAJLS).
  • Founding Director Dr. Carl Falsgraf leads the Japanese Language Project at the Oregon University System, from which CASLS would emerge.