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Language Policy Hidden Agendas and New Approaches

13 Jan 2006-
TL;DR: In this paper, Elana Shohamy considers the effects that these policies have on the real people involved and argues for a more democratic and open approach to language policy and planning, suggesting strategies for resistance to language attrition and ways to protect the linguistic rights of groups and individuals.
Abstract: Policies concerning language use are increasingly tested in an age of frequent migration and cultural synthesis. With conflicting factors and changing political climates influencing the policy-makers, Elana Shohamy considers the effects that these policies have on the real people involved. Using examples from the US and UK, she shows how language policies are promoted and imposed, overtly and covertly, across different countries and in different contexts. Concluding with arguments for a more democratic and open approach to language policy and planning, the final note is one of optimism, suggesting strategies for resistance to language attrition and ways to protect the linguistic rights of groups and individuals.
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Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The authors surveys recent work on content-and-language integrated learning (CLIL) for contexts where the classroom provides the only site for learners' interaction in the target language, and synthesizes research on learning outcomes in CLIL.
Abstract: This article surveys recent work on content-and-language integrated learning (CLIL). Related to both content-based instruction and immersion education by virtue of its dual focus on language and content, CLIL is here understood as an educational model for contexts where the classroom provides the only site for learners’ interaction in the target language. That is, CLIL is about either foreign languages or lingua francas. The discussion foregrounds a prototypical CLIL context (Europe) but also refers to work done elsewhere. The first part of the discussion focuses on policy issues, describing how CLIL practice operates in a tension between grassroots decisions and higher order policymaking, an area where European multi- and plurilingual policies and the strong impact of English as a lingua franca play a particularly interesting role. The latter is, of course, of definite relevance also in other parts of the world. The second part of the article synthesizes research on learning outcomes in CLIL. Here, the absence of standardized content testing means that the main focus is on language-learning outcomes. The third section deals with classroom-based CLIL research and participants’ use of their language resources for learning and teaching, including such diverse perspectives as discourse pragmatics, speech acts, academic language functions, and genre. The final part of the article discusses theoretical underpinnings of CLIL, delineating their current state of elaboration as applied linguistic research in the area is gaining momentum.

642 citations


Cites background from "Language Policy Hidden Agendas and ..."

  • ...As it happens, a recent conceptual reorientation in the study of language policy, expanding the view beyond deliberate central planning toward language practices and beliefs (Shohamy, 2006; Spolsky, 2004), provides an excellent foil for this undertaking....

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  • ...(Shohamy, 2006; Spolsky, 2004), provides an excellent foil for this undertaking....

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Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: This article examined the case of a network of U.S. secondary schools for newcomer immigrants, the International High Schools, and looked at how students' plurilingual abilities are built through seven principles that support dynamic plurilingual practices in instruction-heterogeneity, collaboration, learner-centeredness, language and content integration, language use from students up, experiential learning, and local autonomy and responsibility.
Abstract: Bilingual classrooms most often have strict language arrangements about when and who should speak what language to whom. This practice responds to diglossic arrangements and models of bilingualism developed in the 20th century. However, in the 21st century, heteroglossic bilingual conceptualizations are needed in which the complex discursive practices of multilingual students, their translanguagings, are used in sense-making and in tending to the singularities in the pluralities that make up multilingual classrooms today. Examining the case of a network of U.S. secondary schools for newcomer immigrants, the International High Schools, this article looks at how students' plurilingual abilities are built through seven principles that support dynamic plurilingual practices in instruction-heterogeneity, collaboration, learner-centeredness, language and content integration, language use from students up, experiential learning, and local autonomy and responsibility. As a result, students become not only more knowledgeable and academically successful but also more confident users of academic English, better at translanguaging, and more plurilingual-proficient. The article presents translanguaging in education as the constant adaptation of linguistic resources in the service of meaning-making and in tending to the singularities in the pluralities that make up multilingual classrooms today. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]

472 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: It is argued that family language policies are important as they shape children's developmental trajectories, connect in significant ways with children's formal school success, and collectively determine the maintenance and future status of minority languages.
Abstract: This article describes the newly emerging field of family language policy, defined as explicit and overt planning in relation to language use within the home among family members, and provides an integrated overview of research on how languages are managed, learned, and negotiated within families. A comprehensive framework for understanding family language policy is sketched by bringing together two independent and currently disconnected fields of study: language policy and child language acquisition. Within such a framework, this article reviews research on the role of language ideologies in shaping family language practices, and on the connection between different family language policies, such as the one person–one language approach, and child language outcomes. We argue that family language policies are important as they shape children's developmental trajectories, connect in significant ways with children's formal school success, and collectively determine the maintenance and future status of minority languages.

406 citations


Cites background from "Language Policy Hidden Agendas and ..."

  • ...More than one language ideology, however, is often at work in a given community (Spolsky 2004; Shohamy 2006), and the conflict between competing ideologies can be seen as the genesis of language policies....

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  • ...Family language policy can be defined as explicit (Shohamy 2006) and overt (Schiffman 1996) planning in relation to language use within the home among family members....

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Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The authors argued that it is unwise to define proficiency based on a single variety and because it is impossible to teach or measure proficiency in many varieties simultaneously, we have to consider revising the dominant paradigms of assessment.
Abstract: Postmodern globalization requires that students strive for competence in a repertoire of English varieties as they shuttle between multilingual communities. From this perspective, the current debate becomes irrelevant regarding whether local varieties or dominant varieties (British/American) be used in international proficiency tests. Because it is unwise to define proficiency based on a single variety and because it is impossible to teach or measure proficiency in many varieties simultaneously, we have to consider revising the dominant paradigms of assessment. The changing pedagogical priorities suggest that we have to move away from a reliance on discrete-item tests on formal grammatical competence and develop instruments that are sensitive to performance and pragmatics. In effect, assessment would focus on strategies of negotiation, situated performance, communicative repertoire, and language awareness.

321 citations


Cites background from "Language Policy Hidden Agendas and ..."

  • ...Other scholars have made a radical proposal for multilingual testing (Shohamy, 2006)....

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Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: This paper examined how family languages policies are planned and developed in ten Chinese immigrant families in Quebec, Canada, with regard to their children's language and literacy education in three languages, Chinese, English, and French.
Abstract: This ethnographic inquiry examines how family languages policies are planned and developed in ten Chinese immigrant families in Quebec, Canada, with regard to their children’s language and literacy education in three languages, Chinese, English, and French. The focus is on how multilingualism is perceived and valued, and how these three languages are linked to particular linguistic markets. The parental ideology that underpins the family language policy, the invisible language planning, is the central focus of analysis. The results suggest that family language policies are strongly influenced by socio-political and economical factors. In addition, the study confirms that the parents’ educational background, their immigration experiences and their cultural disposition, in this case pervaded by Confucian thinking, contribute significantly to parental expectations and aspirations and thus to the family language policies.

321 citations