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Integrating Content and Language in Higher Education

From Theory to Practice- Selected papers from the 2013 ICLHE Conference

Edited By Robert Wilkinson and Mary Louise Walsh

Higher education has seen dramatic changes in the past quarter of a century, notably in the language used for instruction. Universities worldwide are increasingly switching to English enabling them to attract a wide student population. This book presents a new collection of original papers showing how universities apply content and language integrated learning to their instructional contexts. The papers highlight the challenges of theory, policy, programme and course design, integration, and teacher and student competences. The diverse international contexts addressing not just English will be of particular interest to university teachers, educational administrators, linguists and others wishing to understand the instructional landscape of higher education today.
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Beyond “English-only” in U.S. writing instruction: Fostering translingual dispositions in writing teacher education


Abstract This paper argues that policies governing U.S. graduate training in composition studies maintain a tacit English-only monolingualism at increasing odds with the languages of students, faculty, and academic work. Focusing on dominant “foreign” language policy requirements for doctoral study in composition, it shows how restrictions on the languages by which the requirement may be met, the use of imaginative literature translation in language requirement examinations, and the schedule for meeting requirements reinforce monolingual beliefs in languages as discrete and stable entities and the irrelevance of non-English languages to composition. The paper argues alternatively for teaching and research practices that would encourage “translingual,” cross-language work as the norm for teachers and scholars of writing.

Keywords: translingualism; writing pedagogy; writing studies.

1.  Introduction

Research in the integration of content and language in higher education has largely focused on the growing trend toward English-medium instruction in multilingual contexts across the globe as part of the internationalization of higher education. Contexts like the U.S., where English monolingualism is the perceived norm, can offer new perspectives on content and language integrated learning since internationalization plays quite differently in institutions traditionally dominated by a tacit policy of “English-only.” In recent years, U.S. colleges and universities have seen increased enrolments of both international and U.S. resident students identified as English language learners. In response, U.S. scholars and teachers of postsecondary writing, identified with the field of rhetoric and composition, have called for revising U.S. writing instruction to engage...

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