Second-Language Sustainment (SL Sustain)

Demonstration of the Virtual Chinese platform.

Virtual roleplay and remedial instruction to evaluate students’ retention of Mandarin Chinese after three months’ learning inactivity over summer vacations. Built on the Virtual Chinese platform developed in partnership with Virtual Virginia Online School.

Tasks included developing a curriculum, creating analytics for evaluating students’ language skills, writing and implementing branching conversations, writing remedial lesson content, and creating an utterance library of possible correct and incorrect responses to be evaluated by the ASR system and learning management system (LMS).

June 2014–January 2015.


Virtual roleplay conversations for students of English as a Foreign Language (EFL) built on the Enskill® platform . Tasks included writing and implementing branching conversations about daily activities such as going to the post office and ordering food at a restaurant, as well as iteratively creating a library of possible utterances for the ASR system to parse. Utterances were standardized to be applicable to multiple locales, including Thailand and Brazil.

December 2016–June 2017.


High school learners of Chinese interacting with RALL-E.

Mandarin Chinese robot-assisted learning development. Tasks included writing and implementing branching conversations and recruiting native speakers of Mandarin to create automatic speech recognition (ASR) models.

June 2014–January 2015.

Virtual Cultural Awareness Trainer (VCAT)

Video demonstration of VCAT software.

The Virtual Cultural Awareness Trainer (VCAT) equips military personnel deploying abroad with the cultural and linguistic skills they need to complete missions respectfully. Courses and virtual roleplay developed in partnership with the US Defense Language and National Security Education Office (DLNSEO).

Regions developed:

  • Arabian Peninsula
  • Horn of Africa
  • Northern Africa
  • Japan
  • Republic of Korea

Tasks included writing practice and quiz questions, developing interactive activities such as timelines and maps, annotating subject-matter expert (SME) interviews, transcribing SME videos, implementing coauthored content into desktop and mobile builds, quality assurance (QA), and bug fixing.

June 2014–present.