Overview: educational and political context . Dick Hudson Cambridge, October 2009. Plan. The ideal education cycle Why education needs linguistics Why linguistics needs education History: 1900-1960 History: 1960-1980 History: 1980-2009 Opportunities and challenges.
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Overview: educational and political context Dick Hudson Cambridge, October 2009
Plan • The ideal education cycle • Why education needs linguistics • Why linguistics needs education • History: 1900-1960 • History: 1960-1980 • History: 1980-2009 • Opportunities and challenges
1.The ideal education cycle adult researcher university school teacher know- ledge research know- ledge Year 1-13 infant
2. Why education needs linguistics • Descriptive content for: • L1 and literacy • FL • EAL • Theoretical content for: • ideas to teach (language awareness) • language pedagogy
3. Why linguistics needs education • Students need good education • Researchers need good education • We need research in educational linguistics • Does education have any effect on language? • Does education affect grammaticality judgements?
4. History: 1900-1960 • HE: No research on language • except phonetics • No teaching of ‘language’ • except OE and philology • Schools: Traditional grammar taught and tested • but not English grammar • ‘ [it is] impossible at the present juncture to teach English grammar in the schools for the simple reason that no-one knows exactly what it is ’ (Board of Education 1921)
5. History: 1960-1980 • GCE grammar test stops • Research shows grammar is useless? • English teachers abandon grammar • FL teachers follow suit • Research favours ‘communicative’ methods? • But linguistics develops fast • particularly English grammar
Committee for Linguistics in Education • 1978 seminar: ‘Linguistics and the Teaching of Language in Schools’ • created BAAL/LAGB Language Steering Committee • 1980 this committee ran 2 seminars: • Linguistics as an examinable subject in schools • The contribution of linguistics to the teaching of English as the mother tongue • 1980 CLIE born • nearly 30 years ago, time to take stock
6. History: 1980-2009 • The Tory backlash: the National Curriculum • Favoured explicit Knowledge About Language (KAL) • But English teachers had no training • So £25 million for LINC • 1997: Labour took over
Strategies • 1999 The Literacy Strategy • current teaching was failing • required grammar at primary • extended since to secondary • 2002 Languages … A strategy for England • current teaching of FL was failing • again required KAL, including grammar
A-level English Language • Linguistics for English teachers trained in literature • Born in early 1980s • A great success • 2011: GCSE English language!
NB Grammar KAL is worse. errors per person FL students
7. Opportunities and challenges • Official policy requires KAL in schools • in English and FL • Linguistics is viewed as important • but difficult and ‘dry’ • But most teachers lack subject knowledge • so most teachers don’t actually teach KAL • What is to be done?