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ERIC Number: EJ1230900
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2019
Pages: 20
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0826-435X
Plurilingual Students' Practices in a Canadian University: Chinese Language, Academic English, and Discursive Ambivalence
Marshall, Steve; Moore, Danièle; James, Connie Lam; Ning, Xiaojie; dos Santos, Pedro
TESL Canada Journal, v36 n1 p1-20 2019
We present findings from a 1-year study of students' plurilingualism across the disciplines in Canadian higher education. We analyze how students exercise their plurilingual competence, focusing on the use of Chinese languages as tools for learning at a university in Metro Vancouver, Canada. The following data are presented: field notes taken during classroom observations, transcripts of recordings of students using Chinese languages while working collaboratively, and semi-structured interviews with students in which they discuss how they use languages for learning. We weigh the creative and instrumental use of Chinese languages as tools for learning against the dominance of academic English. We suggest that the tension between the use of Chinese languages during the process of learning and academic English for assessment underlies the ambivalence around which student participants perceive and practice plurilingualism in higher education.
TESL Canada Federation. 408-4370 Dominion Street, Burnaby, BC V5G 4L7, Canada. Tel: 604-298-0312; Fax: 604-298-0372; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Canada
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A