Beginning in 2019, the National Foreign Language Resource Center (NFLRC) at the University of Hawaii has been organizing a TED Talk-style event at the annual American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) convention. The purpose of ConnecTalks is to give language professionals who will be attending the ACTFL Convention an opportunity to learn about and explore intersections between world language education and various fields. The presentations are recorded, and accompanying materials are posted on the NFLRC website after the events. These talks are cosponsored by different organizations each year (CERCLL is cosponsoring the ConnecTalks in San Diego in 2021).

ConnecTalks 2019 featured three energizing speakers:

  • Rada Mihalcea, Director of the Michigan Artificial Intelligence Lab, Words and People: What Language Tells Us About Ourselves
  • Lourdes Ortega, Professor of Applied Linguistics at Georgetown University, Why Language Teachers Should Think Multilingually
  • Andrew Brown, Founder and Executive Director of The Global Language Network, How to Use Language as a Tool to Help Fix Our world


Learn more about the 2019 talks in this promotional Video. The presentations themselves can be viewed on the ConnecTalks webpage where, in addition to the insightful presentations, Ted-Ed lessons have been developed with the presenters. A button leading to the Ted-Ed lesson can be found below each video.

Unfortunately, the presentations for 2020 were cancelled because of the pandemic, but look for new ConnecTalks at ACTFL 2021.