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ERIC Number: EJ798983
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Jan
Pages: 5
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-0013-127X
Foreign-Language Departments Bring Everyday Texts to Teaching
Bollag, Burton
Education Digest: Essential Readings Condensed for Quick Review, v73 n5 p54-58 Jan 2008
Recently, the Modern Language Association (MLA) called for a major reorganization of undergraduate academic programs and even the structure of foreign-language departments. Typically, the initial two years of language instruction are taught by non-tenure-track instructors with little or no voice in the department. Faculty members mainly teach the literature-heavy upper-level courses. At doctoral institutions especially, there is often little or no cooperation between the two groups. The approach sells short the lower-level language courses, according to the MLA report, by depriving them of the involvement of faculty members with expertise in evaluating and improving language learning. This model should be replaced by "sustained collaboration" among all members of the teaching corps, to revamp language programs and keep them relevant, the report says. In addition, departments should broaden their upper-level courses from their current concentration on literature. That focus is increasingly irrelevant, the report says, as students seek to use their language skills in a growing variety of jobs in the globalizing economy. This article describes one revamped program, the German program at Georgetown University.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A