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EIL, ELF, Global English: Teaching and Learning Issues

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Edited By Cesare Gagliardi and Alan Maley

How can you teach the English language to global English speakers? Can English be taught as an international language? Is it worth teaching? Isn’t it more proper and profitable to learn a standard variety of English? How realistic and useful is the identification of an EIL/ELF variety? Can an EIL/ELF standard be identified? These are some of the questions the present volume has addressed with the contribution of some of the most qualified scholars in the field of English linguistics. The book is divided into four sections. The first part deals with the definition of English as an international language and English as a lingua franca. Section two takes six different teaching issues into consideration. The third section examines some learning issues and the last part of the volume debates the relationship between teacher and student in an English as a lingua franca environment.

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ANNA ZANFEI Revisiting the Can-Do statements According to the Use of English in International Context 355

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355 ANNA ZANFEI Revisiting the Can-Do Statements According to the Use of English in International Context 1. Plurilingualism and the Can-Do statements in the Common European Framework The Common European Framework, published by the Council of Europe in 2001, is an official document of reference for pedagogi- cal activities and it aims at developing foreign language learning. This public document, available both in printed and electronic for- mats, describes a general communicative language ability approach and its implication for the assessment of the European modern lan- guages and the cultural context in which language is set. The main purpose of the European Framework is the promotion of pluri- lingualism and multilingualism with the general intent of increasing mobility within Europe, as well as mutual understanding and coop- eration. The European Framework suggests that multilingualism may be attained by encouraging the learning of more than one foreign language, by increasing the availability of institutionalized courses, and by reducing the dominant position of English in international comunication. According to the European Framework a better knowledge of the many European modern languages is the only possible way to facilitate the communication and interaction among Europeans of dif- ferent mother tongues. Achievements in the proficiency of various languages are then described through a vertical progression of the learner’s acquired abilities, which culminate at the mastery level, though the mastery level is not intended to imply native-speaker- like, or near native-speaker competence. At the same time the pluri- lingual approach emphasizes the fact that a...

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