31 SES 11, Towards a Holistic Approach on Multilingualism: Capturing Multilingual Writing Repertoires in Education
The increase in European migration has influenced the way linguistic diversity is shaped in European policy. The European Commission is committed “to safeguarding this linguistic diversity and promoting knowledge of languages” (Special Eurobarometer 286, 2012:2). To follow these aims, a revised version of “New Framework Strategy for Multilingualism” has been established, setting basic standards to the EU’s language policy. All citizens are encouraged to become multilingual and to draw on their language resources for the purpose of successful educational performance.
Contrarily, educational research often fails to comply with this multilingual perspective adopted in the European policy. Despite the recognition of European multilingualism at a political level, most of the European research conducted on student outcomes, and particularly literacy skills, still has a deficit-oriented perspective toward multilingual pupils. The research conducted so far focused on students’ competence in the majority language and assessed multilingualism merely as background information. The prevailing research on the majority language was initiated to a large extent due to the results reported by large-scale assessment studies, such as PIRLS and PISA that stated a knowledge gap between students with and without an immigrant background. As a consequence, multilinguals are often associated with limited competence in the target languages, while the diversity and complexity of literacy resources provided by their multilingual realities are left untapped.
The reported disadvantages for multilingual students derive mostly from the assessment of receptive language skills (reading or listening comprehension) only. Research often treats these skills as an overall indicator for students’ language proficiency in the majority language while neglecting their multilingual repertoires and their multilingual writing ability in particular. So far, with rare exceptions, the investigation of students’ multilingual abilities per se has been a research prerogative of qualitative studies.
The main objective of the symposium is thus to draw attention to students’ multiliterate writing abilities as an influential indicator for the educational success by presenting three studies which examine multilingual writing from different perspectives. These studies are based on a holistic view of multilingual individuals and acknowledge migrants’ linguistic repertoires and practices as societal and educational resources (Gogolin & Neumann 2009). Throughout the session both quantitative and mixed-methods approaches will be made in studies addressing both multilingual proficiency and background factors.
One perspective refers to the role of students’ productive written skills in the family languages in predicting academic language performance. The first paper presents results from a study on language development and discusses the relevance of writing skills in the heritage language as a stronger predictor for writing skills in the majority language then SES, cultural capital and working memory.
In the second contribution, the results of a panel study introduce the aspect of longitudinal measurement of multilingual writing skills of migrant students in their heritage languages and discuss the role of biliteracy as a predictor for language development of children in different age cohorts for the writing in the majority language and in foreign languages. This contribution reveals the complexity of writing resources available to multilingual students and how they cope with it for multilingual writing.
The third paper provides a mixed-methods approach on investigating the role of parents’ multilingual literacy practices for the development of students’ biliterate writing and reading skills. The analysis of familial background unveils the most favorable conditions for the acquisition of multilingual literacy.
The fourth paper addresses teachers’ aims, perceptions and instruction strategies of written norms, literacy and text production as expressed in qualitative interviews. The study focuses on showing how these deviate from the official curriculum and policy documents due to lack of adequate teacher training for conveying second language writing skills.
Gogolin. I. & Neumann, U. (Eds.) (2009). Streitfall Zweisprachigkeit - The Bilingualism Controversy. Wiesbaden:VS-Verlag. Klieme, E., Artelt, C., Hartig, J., Jude, N., Köller, O., Prenzel, M., Schneider, W. & Stanat, P. (Hrsg.) (2010). PISA 2009. Bilanz nach einem Jahrzehnt. Mullis, I., Martin, M., Foy, P., & Drucker, K.T. (2012). PIRLS 2011 international results in reading. Chestnut Hill, MA: TIMSS & PIRLS International Study Center, Boston College. Vertovec, S. (2007). Super-diversity and its implications. Ethnic and Racial Studies 30, 6, 1024-1054. Special Eurobarometer 286 (2012): https://open-data.europa.eu/data/dataset/S662_67_3_EBS 286
00. Central Events (Keynotes, EERA-Panel, EERJ Round Table, Invited Sessions)
Network 1. Continuing Professional Development: Learning for Individuals, Leaders, and Organisations
Network 2. Vocational Education and Training (VETNET)
Network 3. Curriculum Innovation
Network 4. Inclusive Education
Network 5. Children and Youth at Risk and Urban Education
Network 6. Open Learning: Media, Environments and Cultures
Network 7. Social Justice and Intercultural Education
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Network 10. Teacher Education Research
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Network 12. LISnet - Library and Information Science Network
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Network 15. Research Partnerships in Education
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Network 18. Research in Sport Pedagogy
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Network 20. Research in Innovative Intercultural Learning Environments
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Network 24. Mathematics Education Research
Network 25. Research on Children's Rights in Education
Network 26. Educational Leadership
Network 27. Didactics – Learning and Teaching
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