From Language Lab to Language Center and Beyond: The Past, Present, and Future of Language Center Design

The term ‘language lab’ conjures up a very distinctive image:  orderly rows of cubicles designed for individual students to face machines.  It is a strong image, so strong that even today’s centers are frequently still referred to as labs, despite the staff’s insistence on changed nomenclature.  This volume shows how dramatically today’s language centers have changed, adapted, and evolved from the ‘language lab’.

Edited by Felix Kronenberg, this latest IALLT publication was inspired by the fiftieth anniversary IALLT/FLEAT conference at Harvard University in August, 2015.  It creates a mosaic of different directions, different missions, and different designs that the language centers at the authors’ institutions have embraced.

Purchase this book for $29.95 from, Amazon, or Barnes and Noble.  The ISBN is 9781946123008.


  • Introduction
  • Foreword, or Musings on Over Fifty Years of Using Technology for Language Learning
    (Mike Ledgerwood)
  • Kaputnik: Lessons from the Life and Death of the Language Lab
    (L. Kirk Hagen)
  • From Consoles and Cubicles to Coding and Collaboration
    (Virginia M. Scott and Todd F. Hughes)
  • The Role of Language Centers in the Professional Development of Non-Tenure
    Track Language Faculty
    (Nelleke Van Deusen-Scholl and Suzanne Young)
  • Redefining Language Centres as Intercultural Hubs for Social and Collaborative
    (Catherine Jeanneau)
  • Envisioning New Spaces – The Human Element
    (Bridget Yaden and Cindy Evans)
  • Fostering a Language Center-Based Research Community
    (Mingyu Sun)
  • Design and Deployment of a Language Center in French Higher Education: A
    Complexity and Quality Assurance Approach
    (Cédric Brudermann, Muriel Grosbois, and Cédric Sarré)
  • The Role of the Language Center in a Languages for Special Purposes (LSP)
    (LeeAnn Stone)
  • The IALLT Language Center Evaluation Toolkit: Context, Development,
    and Usage
    (Elizabeth Lavolette and Angelika Kraemer)
  • Conclusion – From Language Centers to Language Learning Spaces
    (Felix Kronenberg)