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ERIC Number: EJ874562
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 27
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 52
ISSN: ISSN-1550-7076
U.S. Latinos' Use of Written Spanish: Realities and Aspirations
Callahan, Laura
Heritage Language Journal, v7 n1 p1-27 Win 2010
This paper reports on an investigation of writing in Spanish in the lives of U.S. Latinos. Twenty-two semi-structured interviews were conducted with informants recruited from among students and former students of high school and college Spanish courses. The interviews were transcribed and coded for concepts and emergent themes (Rubin & Rubin, 2005; Bogdan & Biklen, 1992). Some themes that emerged relate to what U.S. Latinos do with written Spanish and what they would like to be able to do; other themes include classroom experiences, extra-academic avenues of acquisition, the social position of varieties of Spanish, language maintenance, and intergenerational loss. Themes were grouped into four categories: Spanish language maintenance and loss, issues of prescriptivism, the experience of writing in Spanish, and current and planned uses for written Spanish. The results reflect some common patterns in objectives for and obstacles to using written Spanish. The experiences and insights will be of interest to those who are involved in the disciplines of heritage language education and language maintenance in Spanish, in particular at the college level, as well as to individuals concerned with hiring biliterate professionals. (Contains 2 tables and 18 notes.)
National Heritage Language Resource Center and UC Consortium for Language Learning & Teaching. 1333 Rolfe Hall, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1411. Tel: 310-825-1138; Fax: 310-206-5183; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: High Schools; Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A