Language Education

Language Education

Language Education

Language Education


The latest edition of the respected" World Yearbook of Education" deals with language education, central to almost every aspect of learning, and controversial in most education systems. Wide-ranging, international analysis and assessment are the hallmarks of the Yearbooks. This volume brings to bear the latest research and insights from linguistics, class studies and policy studies to present a contemporary view and synthesis of language education from across the world.The contributors are leading specialists drawn from contrasting regional and national contexts. Chapters address issues in three contexts. Firstly, themed chapters on state of the art issues in language education, including mother tongue education, learning a second language and knowledge about language. Secondly, national chapters focusing on common questions on language education form around the world.Thirdly, four case studies of language education in urban settings.Language education is a highly political and sensitive subject, and this volume is an important contribution to understanding these issues in an educational and political setting.


The issues raised by the role of language in education are some of the most important and contentious ones faced by education systems across the globe. Thus we were delighted when Jill Bourne and Euan Reid, two experts in this field, agreed to edit this World Yearbook of Education.

Our expectations have been fulfilled. We believe that this Yearbook is an excellent overview of the range of educational issues raised by language in education. More, the detailed case studies show how these issues are resolved, or not, in practice. Perhaps most significantly, this book shows how the role of language in education is deeply embedded in more general debates about the nature of nationhood in an increasingly globalizing world. the issues may shift and change, as will our understanding and practice, but the fact remains that the role of language in education is a critical one. States and education systems that fail to face up to these issues do so at their peril.

Accordingly, we feel that this Yearbook makes a valuable contribution to this key debate and a thought-provoking and challenging one at that.

David Coulby and Crispin Jones
December 2002

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