(Department of Comparative Literature
DIGITAL TECHNOLOGIES AND DISTRIBUTED LEARNING
IN FOREIGN LANGUAGE STUDY
Abstract. The internet and new technologies offer numerous methodological innovations for the practice of teaching foreign languages, yet teaching Serbian as a foreign language does not seem to have been affected by the contemporary trends in hypertextuality, interactive learning and use of audio-visual materials. Annotated multimedia editions of the most important works by Serbian and Yugoslav writers would greatly improve and enrich the learning process of Serbian as a foreign language, while possibly attracting a larger number of students to the study of South Slavic literatures and cultures. The Transpoetika Project is an academic initiative for publishing annotated, fully-glossed study editions of literary works in the Serbian language through the use of non-proprietary formats, interoperable platforms and web standards such as XML, TEI and Unicode. At the core of the Transpoetika Project lies a collaborative, web-based Serbian-English dictionary which encourages the students of Serbian to become producers of knowledge in a global learning network. Unlike most online dictionaries today, the Transpoetika dictionary is also a dictionary service for distributed learning: a user-configurable RSS system allows dictionary users and editors to monitor recent changes in the dictionary and to contribute to its growth by requesting and receiving translations of new words via RSS feeds.