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Teilprojekt 14 (Englisch)

Embracing Heterogeneity in the Primary Classroom through the Use of Pluralistic Approaches to Foreign Language education

This project addresses the issue of how heterogeneity can be used for the benefit of ALL learners in the English as Foreign Language (EFL) classroom and be regarded as an enrichment for the language learning process. Over the past decade, several authors have recommended the use of pluralistic approaches to EFL education (e.g. Candelier, 2008). In such approaches, learners are encouraged to reflect and draw on their rich store of language information and skills in order to make them aware of their own prior metalinguistic knowledge. As a consequence, multilingual learners’ linguistic and cultural resources are valued as assets for the benefit of all learners and a chance for the development of mutual understanding, tolerance and respect. Based on these assumptions, this project will investigate innovative teaching concepts for the use of pluralistic approaches to EFL education. In order to address the purposes of such a study, the following research questions were formulated:

  1. What are the participating teachers’ and learners’ perspectives towards the use of pluralistic approaches in EFL education?
  2. How are the classroom language teaching/language learning processes affected by the use of these approaches?

During the data collection phase, three longitudinal case studies will be conducted over one academic year in different primary schools in various types of environment (e.g. urban and rural). In this phase, in-service and pre-service teachers will collaborate for the design, implementation and evaluation of EFL lessons based on a pluralistic approach. Research data will be collected via video-recordings of school lessons, in-depth individual interviews with the participating teachers and focus groups interviews with the learners.