ERIC Number: ED179080
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1978
Reference Count: 0
Multilinguisme et education au Nigeria (Multilingualism and Education in Nigeria).
Brann, Conrad Max Benedict
The linguistic situation in Nigeria might be represented as a pyramid with a base composed of 400-500 native languages of which about 100 have been alphabetized. Of these, 51 with more than 100,000 speakers each, are considered regional languages; ten, with more than 1 million speakers each, are considered inter-regional languages; and three having more than 10 million speakers each are national languages. Besides these, there are three languages with special sociolinguistic functions: Pidgin, the contact language; English, the official administrative and educational language; and Arabic, the language used for religious purposes by a large segment of the population. This situation is the context for the discussion of the following: (1) education in general; (2) Nigerian languages and education; (3) the position of English, Pidgin, Arabic, and French with regard to education; and (4) the standardization of Nigerian languages and education. It is concluded that a uniform and centralized policy could not be applied to the entire country, but that each state, and even each ethnic group, would have to find a workable formula adapted to local, regional, and national needs. A solution might be to use the native language of the children involved for elementary education. This would be followed by education in either a second Nigerian language or in English, depending on the part of the country. (AMH)
Descriptors: African Languages, Arabic, Bilingualism, Educational Change, Educational Planning, Elementary Secondary Education, English, Ethnic Groups, Language Classification, Language Planning, Language Research, Multilingualism, Pidgins, Regional Dialects, Sociocultural Patterns, Sociolinguistics
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Laval Univ., Quebec (Quebec). International Center for Research on Bilingualism.