ERIC Number: ED471316
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 2002-Mar
Foreign Language Standards, Standard Language and the Culture of Standardization: Some Implications for Foreign Language and Heritage Language Education.
Train, Robert W.
This paper situates the notion of foreign language (FL) standards within a larger culture of standardization grounded in (1) the context of FL education, (2) the larger political and educational context of standards based reform and standardized assessment, and (3) the pervasive linguistic culture and ideology associated with the notion of standard language. The paper points out three features of the ideology and culture of standardization that are most relevant to education in general, particularly FL education (nativeness, monolingual exclusivity, and the quality of the language). It then focuses on the overt politicization in policy terms that has put the topic of standards in education at the top of the list of educational and legislative priorities and the covert depoliticization in ideological terms of the idea of standard as a necessary, even natural, component of educational quality and reform. The paper concludes with a discussion of a critical culture of FL and heritage language education. It suggests that problematizing the culture of standardization will move FL and heritage language education closer to becoming privileged inter-enriching sites of critical language awareness where reflection upon attitudes and ideologies empowers students and teachers to create complex linguistic and cultural identities as learners and speakers of two or more languages. (27 bibliographic references.) (SM)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Language Consortium Conference on Language Learning and Teaching (Irvine, CA, March 9, 2002).