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Supporting language teachers in linguistically diverse settings


Datum: tisdag 21 december 2021

Tid: 13.00 – 14.30

Plats: Zoom

Anna Krulatz, professor vid Norges Teknisk-naturvitenskapelige Universitet i Trondheim, gästade Institutionen för språkdidaktik för ett digitalt högre seminarium.

På de högre seminarierna vid Institutionen för språkdidaktik presenteras och diskuteras pågående såväl som avslutad forskning, både av våra egna forskare och forskare som gästar oss.

Anna Krulatz

Högre seminariet ISD - tisdag 21 december 2021

Supporting language teachers in linguistically diverse settings. Lessons learned from AcEngMulCla: Acquisition of English in the multilingual classroom

Anna Krulatz är professor i engelska vid Institutt for lærerutdanning ved Norges Teknisk-naturvitenskapelige Universitet i Trondheim.




As language classrooms worldwide become increasingly linguistically and culturally diverse and multilingualism becomes recognized as "the new linguistic dispensation" (Aronin & Singleton, 2012), there is an unprecedented need for teachers to receive adequate training and support to implement multilingual teaching practices (MTPs) (De Angelis, 2011; Lundberg, 2019; Otwinowska, 2014).

In this talk, I will present the outcomes of AcEngMulCla: Acquisition of English in the multilingual classroom, a four-year project funded by the Research Council of Norway (2018-2022), which has been conducted at a Norwegian elementary school (grades 1–8) with a high percentage of linguistically and culturally diverse learners. One of the project's objectives was to examine teachers' awareness of language learning processes and to help them develop adequate MTPs that address specific needs of the multilingual student population in their classrooms. Data were collected through classroom observations, interviews with teachers, questionnaires, and audio-recorded professional development (PD) workshops.

The findings suggest that the participating teachers developed positive views about multilingualism and plurilingual education, yet they continued to rely on monolingual pedagogical practices and struggled with a systematical implementation of MTPs. Additionally, individual development trajectories relative to teacher beliefs and practices were observed. These findings confirm that altering teacher beliefs and practices can pose challenges (Borg, 2011) and that "teachers learn by doing, by reflecting and solving problems, and by working together in a supportive environment" (Yates & Brindley, 2000, p. 1).

In my discussion of implications for PD for teachers working in multilingual settings, I briefly outline the Multilingual Approach to Diversity in Education (MADE), an instructional design tool that aims to help teachers focus on specific MTPs in a systematic way and suggest how it can be combined with teacher identity work (Yazan & Lindahl, 2020) to help language teachers implement the multilingual turn (May, 2019) in their classrooms.


Borg, S. (2011). The impact of in-service teacher education on language teachers' beliefs. System, 39, 370–380.

De Angelis, G. (2011). Teachers' beliefs about the role of prior language knowledge in learning and how these influence teaching practices. International Journal of Multilingualism, 8(3), 216–234.

Otwinowska, A. (2014). Does multilingualism influence plurilingual awareness of Polish teachers of English? International Journal of Multilingualism, 11(1), 97–119.

Lundberg, A. (2019). Teachers' beliefs about multilingualism: Findings from Q method research. Current Issues in Language Planning, 20(3), 266–283.

May, S. (2019). Negotiating the multilingual turn in SLA. The Modern Language Journal, (Supplement 2019), 122–129.

Yates, L., & Brindley, G. (2000). Editorial. Prospect, 15(3), 1–4.

Yazan, B., & Lindahl, K. (Eds.) (2020). Language teacher identity in TESOL: Teacher education and practice as identity work. New York: Routledge.