Lifelong Learning Programme

This project has been funded with support from the European Commission.
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basic information

Title of the Project
Listen and Touch
Brief description
The project addressed needs of blind and visually impaired adults and young adults in learning foreign languages and, in particular, learning English as a foreign language.The project started with the development of methods of foreign language teaching to the blind based on the communicative approach enriched with a variety of techniques appropriate for the blind. It promotes the concept of learning a foreign language through multi-sensory approach. It presents various methods that can be successfully applied in the specific classroom.
Main products: Methodology of foreign language teaching to the blind; Two-level English course adapted for blind users; CD version of the course for blind native speakers of German, Greek and Bulgarian; English Braille Manual
Target Language
Adult Education
Further Information



In most of the European countries the education of visually impaired is drastically limited in regard to resources and methodologies for teaching foreign languages. In addition, a number of factors put barriers in front of people with visual disadvantages who want to develop some communication skills in a foreign language. One of the main reasons for this is that the contemporary language teaching is often based on approaches which actively use visually-oriented learning sources. This often makes the learning of a foreign language inaccessible to the blind.


The aim of the project is to address the needs of blind and visually impaired adults and young adults in learning foreign languages, and in particular English.


The project began with the development of a methodology for foreign language teaching to visually impaired, based on the communicative approach, enriched and supplemented with various techniques suitable for teaching to blind people. This methodology is described in the material “Methodology for foreign language teaching to the blind”. It includes theoretical and practical information for teachers who teach to blind and visually impaired people. The methodology is produced in 4 language versions – English, German, Greek and Bulgarian.
The methodology includes the development of a two-level Braille version of the Streamline English course, adapted for blind students, and an English Braille Manual. Created was also an interactive English course for blind users which was produced on CDs.


- Methodology of foreign language teaching to the blind
- Two-level English course adapted for blind users
- CD version of the course for blind native speakers of German, Greek and Bulgarian
- English Braille Manual
One of the main project outcomes were the pilot courses. After the project, the developed materials and methods were incorporated in the language learning programmes of the three organisations which carried out the pilot courses.

Why the European Language Label?

The application for the European Language Label was provoked by the good results of the project and the potential for further application of those results also after the project end.

Activities following the award of the European Language Label

In December 2004 the project was awarded the European language label for innovative approach in teaching and learning foreign language. The Label logo was placed on the website of the promoter certifying the quality of the project.
In 2005 Lingo study carried out by the European Commission recognised ‘Listen and Touch’ project among the 50 good practices in Europe motivating Language learning.
In 2007 the Europian Commission selected " Listen & Touch" among 70 language projects and awarded Silver Prize for Lifelong Learning.

Assessment of the Impact of the European Language Label

The Label award recognised the success of the project giving it opportunities for greater visibility.

Recommendations for future applicants for the ELL

Recommendations for future applicants could be made in terms of precise explanation of the achieved results, their multiplication potential and plans for sustainability.


Consistency with European Policies in the field of Language Learning

"Listen and Touch" is consistent with the European policies in the filed of language learning because it is aimed at promotion of new approaches to language teaching and learning as well as promotion of language learning for specific purposes



The selection decision of HRDC was based on the results of the project addressing the quality standards of the European Language Label award. The decision was also influenced by the sustainability potential of the main project products.

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Comments on this Case Studies

Your comments are welcome

Date: 2014.10.02

Posted by Simona Donkova (BG)

Message: More initiatives like this should be encouraged in order to support the visually impaired as well as people with other disadvantages and disabilities to be able to participate in a teaching/learning process, including such concerning languages.

Date: 2014.07.15

Posted by Richard Rossner (UK)

Message: Not nearly enough is done to help language learners with disabilities. This was a great initiative that shows the way , or a way. The multi-sensory approach nicely picks up and develops the ideas behind NLP for this purpose

21 December 2014

Audio- video presentation of the NELLIP project

An audio- video presentation of the NELLIP project has been created and made available in the Information section of the NELLIP portal. To access the presentation please click here: