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MultiLingual Spaces

The Joint Faculties of Humanities and Theology | Lund University

MultiLingual Spaces

Multilingual Spaces? Language Practices in English Classrooms

This research project focuses on classroom interaction and the learning of English in secondary-school classrooms in Sweden. We know from prior research that English teachers in Swedish schools tend to use English as the main medium of instruction in the classroom. Most teachers resort to Swedish in order to manage the classroom, explain task and grading requirements as well as explain vocabulary and grammar. There is limited research in classrooms in which there is linguistic diversity: is the use of Swedish a hindrance or a help to students whose language backgrounds are different? Should we – in fact – adopt an English-Only approach in such linguistically diverse setting? What is the value of translation equivalents in students’ strongest languages for expanding their vocabulary in English? These are some of the questions that the MultiLingual Spaces research project addresses. The overarching aim of the project is to develop research-based language practices in English classrooms. Our research is conducted in collaboration with six English teachers at four different secondary schools in Sweden.