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ERIC Number: EJ937354
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 14
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 43
ISSN: ISSN-1466-4208
A New Concept of "Bilingualism" for the IT Age
Chua, Siew Kheng Catherine
Current Issues in Language Planning, v10 n4 p442-455 2009
Formal language use in online communication and phone messages is increasingly being replaced by a new age language, i.e. the net lingos commonly used in Internet acronyms and text messages. This is, perhaps, a logical consequence of computers, mobile phones and gadgets becoming familiar household items in an era where there is a constant demand for faster transmission of information. Effective and fast delivery of messages has become the accepted norm particularly in informal communication since emails, short messaging service, blogs, online forums, news and social network sites allow for almost instant custom messages to be sent to different parties at one time. This new way of virtual interaction, while written, is more spontaneous and like oral communication in substance. As a result, the notions of literacy are no longer confined to having the ability to read and understand traditional texts, style and form or to the more recent conception of multiliteracies. Instead, the availability of these tools has broadened the concept of literacy to include having the ability to decipher and use these new language varieties. This implies the need for individuals to be effectively "bilingual" or mutli-dialectical in standard English and these language varieties to meet new age language requirements. As a consequence, language and literacy planning has had to become more complicated as the implementation of existing language policies already include the use of these high-tech tools in schools, but perhaps without a full realization of the linguistic consequences. The new tools have created an environment for the new language forms that have arisen and this means that both macro- and micro-language policies must complement this need to effectively create "bilingual" language users. This paper examines at how Singapore, one of the most globalized nations in the world, through its use of technology, attempts to fulfil its language planning goals at the national and school levels. This planning is complicated not only by the use of language related to technology, but by the existence of Singlish--the unique interlanguage native to Singapore. This paper discusses the successes, challenges and limitations that Singapore faces in carrying out its language planning initiatives in this rapidly evolving context. (Contains 1 figure and 9 notes.)
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Singapore