Where East Meets West Again!

Until recently Hong Kong and Macao, as former European colonies, were considered places where "East meets West." Macao has quickly trumped Las Vegas as the casino capital of the world. However, there is another new player in town, also from Asia, and we may yet again be seeing a move back toward East meets West. This time in Japan.


In 2018, the Japanese government approved the introduction of casino gaming. The main motivation was to help increase foreign tourism and create employment.


With very close ties to the US, it was only natural that Japan might look to Las Vegas as a model for casino-led tourism. With over 42 million annual visitors, Las Vegas is a superstar worth emulating.


And what about job creation? Well, Las Vegas leads here, too! For starters, casino dealers need to be trained. And then there is the must of speaking foreign languages, especially English—and particularly Casino English.


Japan is taking notice.


Casino Education Group (CEG) is the newest, premier casino training school to partner with UEC USA, an internationally recognized leader in language and professional skills development.


Together, CEG and UEC have been hard at work collaborating on several exciting programs to improve the career opportunities of its students.




Leveraging AI Technology to Maximize TESOL Time-on-Task

Making Engaged Time More Engaging:

Leveraging AI Technology to Maximize TESOL Time-on-Task

By Jon Felperin, MA TEFL



“TESOL International Association has defined a core set of principles for the exemplary teaching of English learners. The 6 Principles are universal guidelines drawn from decades of research in language pedagogy and language acquisition theory. They are targets for teaching excellence and should undergird any program of English language instruction.”  (https://www.tesol.org/the-6-principles/about)

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Many decades of educational research, including TESOL research, have repeatedly shown that time-on-task directly links learning to time spent studying. Studies have explored how time can be more efficiently used in classrooms and which instructional practices lead to active student learning. To better understand these dynamics, the California Beginning Teacher Evaluation Study (BTES) of grades 2 through 5 highlighted three important time concepts to consider: allocated timeengaged time and academic learning time. All are important according to purpose; but some are more important than others! https://feaweb.org/time-on-task-a-teaching-strategy-that-accelerates-learning

Now let’s add two, unique, AI technologies to the mix and we will have a formula for making engaged time, more engaging.

Introducing NativeAccent and écree.

Listening and Speaking

Listening and Speaking in English are critical to success in school and in the workplace. NativeAccent, by Carnegie Speech, an AI technology developed at Carnegie Mellon University, helps students double their spoken English skills in as little as 10 hours of active learning.  NativeAccent assesses students’ spoken English skills and presents lessons that are individualized to help each student rapidly improve speaking and listening skills in English.

NativeAccent covers pronunciation, word stress and fluency, and grammar skills from high beginning through advanced levels. As skills improve, the patented Intelligent Tutor monitors and adapts the curriculum to the students’ evolving skill levels.

 Precise feedback is given on where and when errors occur. NativeAccent provides easy to understand instruction in the form of text, images and audio.

 Reading and Writing

Smart automated assessment can increase student engagement and improve learning outcomes. It also can save teachers time!

écree automated assessment software helps students improve their writing. Students can submit as many drafts as they need to work on the key elements of good writing: organization, clarity, supporting an argument with evidence, and analysis.

The software is responsive to student needs. It provides real-time feedback whenever the student needs it.

Using the software is easy. No training is required. Teachers can add assignments in a matter of minutes. Students can submit an assignment and receive feedback in less than a minute.

écree algorithms use dozens of metrics to capture over 1,000 data points per typed page. These metrics are the same things that a human looks for when grading a paper: organization, argumentation, use of evidence, and staying focused. Because écree software analyzes the same metrics a human would, it can provide feedback on the content of any student paper.

Students who used écree have shown consistent improvement in their scores. Whether students are trying to improve their writing for a class or studying for a standardized test, écree will help them on the most important elements of good writing: organization, argumentation, use of evidence, and staying focused.