A conversation with established Yacapaca author Nick Verney reminded me that about 16 months ago I overviewed the very nascent state of Spanish language resources. There were seven groups, of which five were public. None had really got off the starting blocks. Here is what they looked like:
I predicted a shakeout and offered tips for those who wanted to run the most successful group. A year and a half later, this is the result:
What a difference! In total, we’ve seen 2,400% growth in that time. I am not sure if some of the old groups have disappeared or been renamed, but either way there are clearly two groups that have succeeded (out of a total of 15 now; the rest are so small they don’t appear in the list).
The top group is Nick’s (no surprise there). So, Did he follow my advice? Well, partly. The group certainly is well named and described, with a good colophon. But Nick has restricted membership to his own department, rather than keeping it open as I recommended. I’m beginning to think he may be right about this; a tight authoring team is hard to build remotely.
I also recommended that authors produce a range of objective and subjective (free text) material. Nick and his group have ignored free text altogether, but they have worked hard to introduce variety into the quizzes. They use the full range of question types, with lots of images and sounds. They also integrate them with resources from elsewhere, which I think is excellent practice.
So Nick scores 10/10 for a great group which produces excellent, and popular, Spanish resources. I think I’ll give myself a 5 and a “must try harder”.