ERIC Number: ED198223
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1979-Nov
Reference Count: 0
Standard English: A Prerequisite for Professional Careers.
McClain, Shirla R.; And Others
Because many urban youth have grown up in communities where only nonstandard English is spoken, and because schools lack programming to teach standard English, these youth frequently graduate from high school without acquiring communication skills necessary for professional careers. Prospective employers tend to associate certain dialects with specific social statuses. In studies designed to measure the effect of attitudes toward language in hiring decisions, speakers of nonstandard English fared poorly. Notions that nonstandard English is the product of low intelligence, poor education, or faulty hearing, however, are misconceptions. Research evidence verifies the historical origins of nonstandard English and documents its legitimacy as a language system. In order to enable speakers of nonstandard English to participate equally in educational and social opportunities, however, educators should make an effort to teach standard English to these speakers. Strategies to develop oral language skills of young children should focus on experiences that encourage spontaneous responses. Strategies for upper elementary and secondary grades should incorporate an interdisciplinary approach, and oral drills at the secondary level should be increasingly complex. (Author/APM)
Descriptors: Elementary Secondary Education, Employment Opportunities, Employment Qualifications, English Instruction, Higher Education, Job Skills, Language Handicaps, Language Standardization, Nonstandard Dialects, Oral Language, Pattern Drills (Language), Professional Occupations, Substitution Drills
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Not available in paper copy due to author's restriction. Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Urban Education Association (Detroit, MI, November, 1979).