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[WS118] Multilingualism and Literacy


Authors : Andrea Schalley, Susana Eisenchlas, Diana Guillemin

Title: Multilingualism and Literacy

One of the visible aspects of globalisation and politico-economic upheavals in the third millennium is the increased mobility of populations, resulting in children growing up with, and adults being exposed to, a variety of languages. Ensuing are linguistic systems that display a range of proficiency levels across the four macroskills, namely listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Usually it is the reading and writing skills for one or all the languages spoken by multilinguals that lag behind – or in some cases are never developed. This workshop will explore the impact of multilingualism on literacy development of both children and adults. In particular, we will focus on whether, and if so how, literacy skills or the lack thereof in one language impact on the development of literacy in the other language(s) and on cognitive skills more generally.

Specific topics may include but are not limited to:

  • The acquisition of multiple literacies by multilinguals:
    • Cognitive processes
    • Pathways and best practice
    • Challenges
    • Outcomes and implications
  • The cost of illiteracy in the home or heritage language, specifically in the following domains:
    • Cognitive
    • Academic
    • Social
    • Economic
    • Identity formation, wellbeing, and health
  • Specific populations, e.g.:
    • Emergent literacy in multilingual children
    • Literacy and emergent second language acquisition (i.e. in sequential multilingualism)
    • Literacy and multilingualism in children with interrupted schooling
    • Acquisition of literacy in the language of schooling or work in the absence of literacy in the home language


Program Committee:

Viv Edwards, University of Reading, UK,
Susana Eisenchlas, Griffith University, Australia
Fred Genesee, McGill University, Canada
Diana Guillemin, Griffith University, Australia
Paul Leseman, University of Utrecht, the Netherlands
David C.S. Li, Hong Kong Institute of Education, Hong Kong
Rahat Naqvi, University of Calgary, Canada
Laura Ann Petitto, Gallaudet University, USA
Ingrid Piller, Macquarie University, Australia
William C. Ritchie, Syracuse University, USA
Andrea Schalley, Griffith University, Australia

22.07.2013   10:30-12:30

Chair: Andrea Schalley

10:30 - 11:00 David LI
Chinese literacy development: key to ethnic minority groups' integration and social mobility in multilingual Hong Kong
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11:00 - 11:30 Marta FAIRCLOUGH et al.
Emerging Literacy in Spanish among Hispanic Heritage Language University Students in the United States: A Pilot Study
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11:30 - 12:00 Diana GUILLEMIN et al.
The Challenge of ‘Literacy for all’ in Multicultural Australia: The last 25 years
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12:00 - 12:30 Basri JAFAR et al.
Attitudes and Approaches to Supporting Children’s Biliteracy Development and Bilingualism in Australian Community Context
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22.07.2013   14:00-16:00

Chair: Diana Guillemin

14:00 - 14:30 Anat STAVANS
Allowing for Bi-Literacy Patterns in Ethiopian Immigrant Families in Israel: A Socio-Educational Challenge
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14:30 - 15:00 Andrea SCHALLEY et al.
Play to Learn: Self-Directed Literacy Acquisition through Online Games
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15:00 - 15:30 Emese BOKSAYNÉ-PAP
Writing in a third language: Hungarian-Romanian bilingual EFL writers in a second language educational context
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15:30 - 16:00 Danielle BOON
Literacy acquisition by adults in multilingual Timor-Leste
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22.07.2013   16:30-18:30

Chair: David Li

16:30 - 17:00 Giuseppina VITALE et al.
The impact of bilingualism and biliteracy on the development of literacy-related skills in a second language. The case of Generation 1.5.
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17:00 - 17:30 Agatha VAN GINKEL
How to transfer reading from 'the other tongue' to 'the mother tongue'; the teacher's challenge
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17:30 - 18:00 Constanze WETH
Language contact phenomena in literacy: The hidden influence of writing systems on the languages in contact
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18:00 - 18:30 all et al.

23.07.2013   10:30-12:30

Chair: Susana Eisenchlas

10:30 - 11:00 Maria KAMBANAROS
Grammatical category dissociation of the written modality in multilingual aphasia
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11:00 - 11:30 Sandra TINNER
Read into the eyes of bilinguals to elucidate some aspects of the different reading strategies
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11:30 - 12:00 William RITCHIE et al.
Emerging trilingual literacies in Rural India: Linguistic, Marketing and Developmental Aspects
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12:00 - 12:30 all et al.