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CEC and Research


We keep abreast of research in the field of language acquisition, language teaching, and teacher development. It is also important to continue to engage in research, and to find opportunities to build partnerships between research and schools.

Current projects:
Cultural and Linguistic Innovation in Schools: The Languages Challenge


This newly published book is an amalgamation of projects from the last five years. Co-authored with Jane Spiro (Oxford Brookes University), the intent of this collection of case studies is to illuminate and celebrate schools that are innovating in the area of languages. We hope that teachers and school leaders will use it both to inform and inspire change in their own schools.

Developing Language-Integrated Teaching in International Schools

This on-going project is working on building knowledge and resources in schools to provide a language-integrated curriculum. In classrooms/schools with significant numbers of language learners language development shouldn't be left to chance, but should be a key focus of all learning and teaching. An overview of the LIT approach can be found in the February 2018 issue of Global Insights magazine (p. 17).

Every Teacher is a Language Teacher

This much vaunted phrase is the focus of a current project investigating the underlying expectations of designating all teachers as language teachers. The research is being used to underpin the professional development programme of the same name, to encourage schools to provide staff with the knowledge, both theoretical and practical, to be language teachers for all their students. An introduction to the project can be found in the Autumn issue of IS Magazine (p.5).

What people are saying about Linguistic and Cultural Innovation in Schools: The Languages Challenge
Jim Cummins, Professor Emeritus, University of Toronto

The five case studies spanning four continents that form the core of this inspirational book demonstrate the power of schools, teachers, and communities to transform the identities and future potential of our youth. The authors insightfully unveil the deep structure of respect that underlies the transformative power of these schools—the curriculum connects to the lives of students and expands their cultural and intellectual horizons, students’ pride in their home languages is reinforced across the curriculum at the same time as their linguistic repertoires are expanded, and leadership is shared horizontally amongst all the educators in the school. These narratives stand in stark contrast to the hierarchical constriction of student and teacher potential that ill-conceived educational reform efforts have engendered in many countries around the world.

Ofelia García  The Graduate Center, City University of New York

Spiro and Crisfield provide us here with innovative descriptions of how families, teachers, school leaders, and children, in different social contexts act on their visions for multilingualism. This is a most valuable text, for the linguistic and cultural complexities in the different settings are not hidden, but made visible as people engage in the work of making their children bilingual through schools.

Victoria A. Murphy, PhD | Professor of Applied Linguistics  University of Oxford

This is a really interesting volume presenting a series of case studies adopting qualitative methodologies from different schools across a range of countries, the aim of which is to examine key questions about changing policy and practice within schools to better support multilingual learners. It offers insightful discussion on mechanisms of change and will be an informative and fascinating read for anyone who works in the area of the education of linguistically diverse pupils.

Androula Yiakoumetti, Author of Multilingualism and Languages in Education, 
Cambridge University Press

This wonderful book provides a timely demonstration of the excellent work that takes place worldwide in those schools that are embracing linguistic and cultural diversity. The analyses of the showcase schools afford some superbly revealing and subtle insights into the general observation that, regardless of geographical location or languages involved, promoting linguistic diversity leads to benefits and enrichment for both learners and the wider community. If you're looking for a great resource for both academics and language-teaching practitioners, look no further.

Past projects:

Beyond EAL: Supporting language learners in mainstream classrooms This project spanned five years, from 2009-2014, and included a combination of professional development and research. In 2013-2014, in cooperation with Jane Spiro (Oxford Brookes University) the professional development programme was run as a pilot project in a UK primary school. The focus of the research was how far professional development can change the attitudes and practices of teachers working with EAL students.

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