Bilingual Education in a Challenging World: From Policy to Practice

A special issue of Education Sciences (ISSN 2227-7102). This special issue belongs to the section "Language and Literacy Education".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 August 2024 | Viewed by 1719

Special Issue Editor

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Guest Editor
Department of Education, National Taiwan Normal University, Taipei, Taiwan
Interests: language policy; bilingual education; media literacy; comparative education; multicultural education

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

In recent decades, the spread of bi/multilingualism and bi/multilingual education has become a significant phenomenon worldwide. Although the ideas hidden behind the promotion of bi/multilingual education vary from country to country, related policies and educational practices have increased substantially. The EU, Canada, and Singapore are frequently mentioned examples of countries providing bilingual education. In addition, there are bottom-up practices of bilingual schools in Australia and a top-down policy of initiating bilingual education in all levels of schooling in Taiwan. Under this circumstance, learning from other countries is common so that policy-borrowing or policy transfer occurs often. Meanwhile, due to different social and cultural contexts, diverse practices in bilingual education can be expected.

In this Special Issue, original research articles related to bi/multilingual education are welcome. The topics may include (but are not limited to) the following:

  • Policy analysis of bi/multilingual education.
  • Development of bi/multilingual education in a region or in a country.
  • Implementation of bi/multilingual education at the central government or local authority level.
  • Practices of bi/multilingual education in pre-university education.
  • Practices of bi/multilingual education in higher education.
  • Pedagogy of bi/multilingual education.
  • Assessment or evaluation of bi/multilingual teaching.
  • Bi/multilingual teacher training.
  • Professional development of bi/multilingual teachers.
  • Teaching material of bi/multilingual teachers.
  • Technology-enhanced bi/multilingual teaching.
  • Attitudes of children, adolescents, and adults to bi/multilingual education.
  • Comparative study of bi/multilingual education.

I look forward to receiving your contributions.

Prof. Dr. Tzu-Bin Lin
Guest Editor

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  • bilingual education
  • multilingual education
  • language policy
  • bi/multilingual instruction

Published Papers (1 paper)

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19 pages, 278 KiB  
Teaching Bilingually: Unlocking the Academic and Cognitive Potential—Teachers’ Insights
by Emma Creed, Roberto Filippi and Andrew Holliman
Educ. Sci. 2024, 14(4), 406; - 13 Apr 2024
Viewed by 1321
Recent quantitative research on bilingual education suggests beneficial academic outcomes for pupils regardless of socio-economic status (SES). Bilingual education in England, a relatively novel phenomenon, may be better understood from teachers’ perspectives; however, there is a paucity of qualitative research in this area. [...] Read more.
Recent quantitative research on bilingual education suggests beneficial academic outcomes for pupils regardless of socio-economic status (SES). Bilingual education in England, a relatively novel phenomenon, may be better understood from teachers’ perspectives; however, there is a paucity of qualitative research in this area. To fill the gap, the present study explores the unique perspective of a sample of bilingual schoolteachers regarding the children who attend bilingual schools and the effects of bilingual education on children’s academic and non-academic development. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with six bilingual schoolteachers, and thematic analysis was adopted to interpret their experiences in greater depth. A thematic analysis revealed four superordinate themes: Academic and Socio-Cultural Effects, Privilege in Bilingual Education, Bilingual Education Takes Time, and Special Educational Needs. These results highlight academic, socio-cultural, and linguistic benefits with important implications for promoting equity in bilingual education. Further research should focus on schools with a higher proportion of students from lower socio-economic status backgrounds. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bilingual Education in a Challenging World: From Policy to Practice)

Planned Papers

The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.

Title: Enhancing Multilingualism Awareness: Preparing White, Monolingual Teacher Candidates for Diverse Classrooms

Abstract: /

Title: Challenge-/Competence-Appraisal of Swiss Two-Way Immersion Teachers of the “Cursus bilingue / Bilingualer Studiengang” and Career-Entry Stage Implications

Abstract: A growing number of public two-way immersion schools (French-German) in the cantons of Bern, Jura and Neuchâtel in Switzerland led to an increased need of teachers explicitly prepared for those schools (Buser, 2020). These specialized needs of educators resulted in the thoughtfully conceptualized two-way immersion curriculum “Cursus bilingue / Bilingualer Studiengang” jointly offered by two Swiss Universities of Teacher Education located in the French-speaking and in the German-speaking part respectively (Buser, 2017). This article explores the challenge-/ competence-appraisal of two-way immersion teachers of the “Cursus bilingue / Bilingualer Studiengang” (Buser & Meia, 2023). Research data were collected by means of a data collection instrument (Keller-Schneider, 2010) to identify two-way immersion teachers’ appraisals of the challenge posed by their various professional requirements, and the associated feeling of competence as perceived by them. Challenge and competence appraisal is relevant for professional development and professionalization. A total of 689 future teachers - at different stages - from French-speaking, German-speaking and two-way immersion teacher training programs completed a survey measuring professional requirements in challenge and competence dimensions. Structural equation modelling was used to assess the validity of the measures. Teachers’ sense of competence and perceived challenge were compared across different stages and contexts. Based on the results of these two studies, research-based and practitioner-informed implications for an induction program for beginning two-way immersion teachers in their career-entry stage are presented. The challenges caused by the new complexity of requirements they meet as fully responsible two-way immersion teachers calls for such an induction program aiming to foster further professionalization processes needed to master the whole complexity of professional requirements.

Title: Towards embodied content and language integrated learning: Exploring the impact of translanguaging and trans-semiotizing pedagogy in nursing education in Hong Kong

Abstract: Internationalization is gaining in popularity in higher education. Bilingual programmes where a second language is used as the medium of instruction have thus become increasingly popular. Content and lan-guage integrated learning (CLIL) with both content and language having an integrated curricular role is one such programme. There has been fruitful research on CLIL in various contexts in primary and sec-ondary education. However, how to integrate language support with content teaching in the health sci-ence discipline has not featured prominently in research literature and efficacy of English-medium (EMI) nursing education is found compromised by the language barrier. In view of the research gap and the pivotal role of nursing education, research on CLIL pedagogy in nursing education is urgently needed. Therefore, this study draws upon the recent theoretical development of translanguaging and trans-semiotizing and investigates the impact of CLIL on university students’ content and language develop-ment in EMI nursing education with a quasi-experimental design. Data on the effectiveness of the translanguaging and trans-semiotizing pedagogy were collected through the pre- and post-tests, student and teacher interviews and classroom interaction recording. Results of the study indicated that: 1) EAL nursing students studying via the English medium are in dire need of academic literacy support; and 2) the translanguaging and trans-semiotizing CLIL pedagogy not only provides nursing students easier ac-cess to subject-specific vocabulary but also supports the unpacking and repacking of nursing knowledge in disciplinary genres. The implications for the language-in-education policy in English-medium nursing education will also be discussed.

Title: Practicing and optimizing localized model for bilingual education towards sustainability in primary and secondary schools in Taiwan

Abstract: Since the announcement of the‘Blueprint for Developing Taiwan into a Bilingual Nation by 2030’, several reforms in language education have been outlined to implement full-scaled bilingualization of the education system (National Development Council, 2018a; 2018b). One distinguishing feature of these reforms is promoting bilingual courses in primary and secondary schools. Among the 3,392 public primary and secondary schools, nearly one-third of them have been implementing bilingual education in certain subjects (Chang, 2022). The vast majority of these schools have adopted Immersion, CLIL (Content Language Integrated Learning) or EMI (Medium of Instruction) as models for bilingual education (Liao, 2020; Huang & Tsou, 2023). While much has been documented about the effects of bilingual education, concerns have been raised during the process of incorporating these Western-oriented models into local school contexts (Ho & Lin, 2022; Huang & Tsou, 2023). Arguing that these exotic models for bilingual education may not be suitable for schools in Taiwan due to the differences of education systems and school characteristics, Lin (2021a; 2021b; 2021c) proposes the first localized FERTILE model for bilingual education and believes it is a better choice for local schools to implement and promote bilingual education. Adopting the FERTILE model as the theoretical framework, this qualitative study aims to: (1) understand the process of school leaders and teachers planning and practicing bilingual education; and (2) articulate the essentials of the support mechanism required for sustainability of bilingual education in the local context. The findings of this study are conceptually and practically meaningful in four aspects. Firstly, the findings will provide teacher educators insightful reference for bilingual teacher professional development programs. Secondly, they will inform policy makers the directions towards a sustainable bilingual education at schools. Thirdly, they will be useful to examine the compatibility and practicability of the first localized model for bilingual education (i.e., the FERTILE model) in Taiwan, providing empirical evidence for the potential modification of this new conceptual model in the future. Lastly, they will offer school practitioners valuable reference in their exploration and consideration of the model to be adopted for the implementation of bilingual education at their schools in the future.

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