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The Teachers We Need : Expanding the World Language Teacher Supply System 2010 ACTFL Catherine Ingold, PhD Shuhan Wang, PhD November 20, 2010. Overview. Share some key points in the white paper about transforming teacher supply

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The Teachers We Need: Expanding the World Language Teacher Supply System

2010 ACTFL

Catherine Ingold, PhD

Shuhan Wang, PhD

November 20, 2010


  • Share some key points in the white paper about transforming teacher supply

  • Discuss strategies to transform world language teacher supply in the US

A serious domestic and international world language education gap in the united states

A serious domestic and international World Language Education Gap in the United States

Our global competitors
Our Global Competitors

  • 23 of the top 26 industrialized and developing nations begin second language learning before the age of 12

  • 21 of 24 nations have mandatory second language education policies

  • The European Commission goal (2005): All European Union (EU) citizens should develop proficiency in three languages

  • In EU, 21 countries require 9 years of FL study

  • In 2005, 50 percent of Europeans over age fifteen reported that they could converse in at least one language besides their mother tongue

The united states world language education gap
The United States: World Language Education Gap

  • 82% of US students five years or older are monolingual (

  • Traditionally we start language learning at age fourteen 

  • In the 2008–2009 academic year, only eleven states and the District of Columbia required language study at any point in a student’s K–12 education

Other us world language education gaps
OtherUS World Language Education Gaps

  • We do not offer equitable opportunity and access for world language learning for all students

  • World Language education starts too late, with too little time to allow students to build proficiency

  • Our programs are often limited to traditionally taught European languages

Demands for world language education in the us have expanded and changed
Demands for World Language Education in the US Have Expanded and Changed

Immersion and early language learning programs: Not just in high schools

Emergent world languages: Not just traditionally taught languages

Demonstrated student proficiency outcomes: Not just for exposure and a “taste” of different cultures

Expanded delivery system and technological use in the classroom: Not just face to face and textbook-driven language learning


Our vision an additive language policy for all students
Our Vision: An Additive Language Policy for All Students

Five Goals :

(1) increase the number and effectiveness of language education programs;

(2) expand the range of languages offered;

(3) begin language instruction at a younger age and continue through a longer, articulated sequence;

(4) establish clear expectations for students’ language learning outcomes; and

(5) expand access and opportunity to learn via both traditional and innovative delivery systems.

The teachers we need
The Teachers We Need:

  • Effective teachers for all languages

  • Elementary and immersion world language teachers

  • Teachers of emerging world languages

  • Teachers with technological literacies and who can teach in the distance learning, online, and blended learning environment

World languages a teacher shortage area
World Languages:A Teacher Shortage Area!

36 States and the District of Columbia identified foreign languages/world languages/languages other than English as teacher shortage areas.

Teacher shortage areas nationwide listing 1990/91 through 2009/10 (Office of Postsecondary Education, US Department of Education, March 2009)

Adapting to a changing world
Adapting to a Changing World

  • Our outdated, fragmented, and inflexible system for producing world language teachers must be replaced by an expanded system responsive to our nation’s needs in the global age.

Big questions to answer
Big Questions to Answer:

  • What does it mean to be a highly effective world language teacher?

    What are the competencies(such as linguistic proficiency, content knowledge, and pedagogical skills) that world language teachers must possess and demonstrate to enable their students to attain high learning outcomes?  

Big questions to answer1
Big Questions to Answer:

2. What does it take to produce a highly effective world language teacher? Given an expanded and heterogeneous pool of prospective teachers, what kinds of preparation and certification programs must be in place to produce a sufficient number of effective world language teachers who can meet the increasing demand for varied world language programs?

Big questions to answer2
Big Questions to Answer:

3. How can we, as a society, leverage resourcesacross federal, state, local, and institutional boundaries to ensure that the supply of world language teachers meets the demand?

Continuum of Teacher Development &

Life Cycle of a WL Teacher


  • State government, education, and certification agencies

  • Local education agencies

  • Institutions of higher education and teacher education programs

  • National and Professional Organizations and Institutes

  • Federal government


  • What innovations or best practices are there in your areas or institutions?

  • What are the next steps that all of us should be pursuing at different levels?

Access the documents at


Catherine Ingold [email protected]

Shuhan C. Wang [email protected]