ERIC Number: EJ1111392
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016
Abstractor: As Provided
Language Policies in Puerto Rican Higher Education: Conflicting Assumptions of Bilingualism
Carroll, Kevin S.
Current Issues in Language Planning, v17 n3-4 p260-277 2016
This paper describes the language policies at 38 institutions of higher education on the Caribbean island of Puerto Rico. As a commonwealth of the US, Spanish and English hold co-official status on Puerto Rico despite the fact that majority of islanders use Spanish as their first language. Given the colonial status of the island, English has held a privileged role in higher education where institutional policies have allowed professors to teach in English or Spanish. After a description of the language context of Puerto Rico, data is presented that used document analysis of university catalogues along with structured interviews with registrars' offices from the majority of the island's campuses. The findings describe varying levels of open-language policies, which the author argues can be beneficial to students and professors who are bilingual but a detriment to students who have yet to develop academic language proficiency in both languages. The findings further indicate that the majority of institutions have de facto open-language policies, which allow instructors to use textbooks largely published in English and present their lectures and assessments in Spanish or a mixture of Spanish and English.
Descriptors: Language Planning, Bilingualism, Spanish, English (Second Language), Structured Interviews, Second Language Learning, Language Proficiency, Academic Discourse, Language of Instruction, Language Role, College Faculty, Catalogs, School Catalogs, Universities, Educational Policy, Code Switching (Language), Language Usage
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Puerto Rico
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A