Tools for Interpersonal Communication


Supported by Geddes, CAS IT, and BU IS&T

Please see the dedicated Blackboard resource page for detailed information about Blackboard.


Supported by Geddes, CASIT and BU IS&T

Zoom is video conferencing tool that instructors may use for virtual classrooms, online meetings, and for student video conversations. Its features include breakout rooms, the ability to record sessions, and audio transcriptions.  Boston University has a site licenses available for students and faculty.  A BU account can automatically upload recorded sessions into the cloud, which then can be shared via weblink. Zoom may be used as a language lab software alternative for those who wish to record student video as well as audio, through the use of breakout rooms.



Supported by Geddes

Create a/synchronous online speaking assignments, assessments and tests within Google Chrome.  Geddes has a number of licenses for this software, please contact if you are interested in using this app for your class.



Supported by Geddes and CASIT.

Yellowdig is a social learning platform that connects learners and educators in online, hybrid, and in-person programs. Available to all language courses in the Spring 2024 by request.  Please email and ask for it to be enabled in your Blackboard course.

We highly recommend taking the hour long online certification course before using Yellowdig in your courses.  Part 2 of this online course walks instructors through the setup of Yellowdig in a Blackboard course.  For those who simply need a refresher, there are a series of videos here.


    Supported by Geddes

    Instructors can create pronunciation exercises in Google Chrome, where students read a text and attempt match written text (with an optional audio component). BU has a site license for iSpraak for anyone with a email address.


    Supported by Geddes

    FlipGrid is a free video message board. Instructors may pose questions or discussion topics to students, who then record a video response. Responses are open to all members of a class, and students optionally may reply or comment on other students’ responses.


    Boomalang/Talk Abroad

    Supported by Course Coordinators in conjunction with Boomalang/Talk Abroad

    Boomalang and Talk Abroad pair students with a native speaker for a recorded conversation. Departments generally choose between Boomalang or Talk Abroad based on the languages available and price. Students purchase conversations as part of their course. Boomalang costs $15 for two 15-minute conversations. Talkabroad is $15 for one 30 minute conversation.

    Boomalang is available in: Spanish, French, Portuguese, German, and Italian. TalkAbroad is available in Spanish, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Arabic, and Japanese.



    Supported by Geddes, BU IS&T

    Pronto is a messaging app supported by Blackboard. It allows students (and instructors) to text, share info, and video conference (with a small group of people.)