The course is designed to critically engage experienced educators with the current national and international research and literature in language acquisition and second language learning. This will enable them to respond appropriately to the language, learning and achievement needs of the diverse students in a range of educational contexts, particularly students for whom the language of instruction is an additional language. The course will extend educators’ understanding of the importance of a linguistically supportive learning context for learners, and how education personnel can work effectively within these contexts.
In the contemporary educational setting, effective and responsive educators must continually strive to enhance their ability to serve the diverse learning and achievement needs and aspirations of the students in their classroom. The course will support educators in extending their understanding of the importance of language policy at the national and local level and support them in developing the skills needed to work effectively with such policies.
Students completing this course will be able to:
1. articulate current theoretical underpinnings and relevant research in first/second language acquisition and the resulting methods and programme recommendations for teaching and learning languages;
2. describe the sociocultural foundations of language, and analyse the inter-relationship of language, culture and identity;
3. explain systems of languages;
4. identify the varied language needs of culturally and linguistically diverse students in mainstream classes;
5. critically analyse and critique current national and international issues, policies, and initiatives, including potential effects on practice, related to learning and teaching languages, including bicultural/bilingual education; language immersion programmes; indigenous language revitalization initiatives; heritage language maintenance; ESOL/TESOL, and multilingualism.