English medium instruction, identity construction and negotiation of Teochew-speaking learners of English

Fan Fang, Guangwei Hu

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The promotion of standard languages as mediums of instruction as well as the worldwide spread and popularity of English have generated various issues related to attitudes towards and ideologies underpinning different languages, language practices, and language teaching and learning in different contexts. With the promotion of the English-as-a-Medium-of-Instruction (EMI) policy in Chinese higher education, it is worthwhile to investigate how multilingual speakers perceive English in EMI programmes and its relationship to their first languages (L1s). This study investigated how Chinese university students from a minority language group perceived the effectiveness of EMI and how they constructed and negotiated their identity. The findings from the interview and focus group data collected from a group of Teochew speakers, representative of minority language students, revealed that the participants’ L1 was marginalised in comparison to the dominant use of English and Putonghua in academic settings, although they held mixed attitudes towards EMI. We argue that an unquestioned embrace of EMI in higher education does not benefit linguistic diversity (i.e. the use of other languages in academic settings) but would endanger the L1s of minority language students. Accordingly, we call for language policymakers in particular and society in general to take an inclusive multilingual perspective.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2022

Keywords

  • attitude
  • English as a medium of instruction
  • identity
  • minority language learners
  • Teochew

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • Education
  • Linguistics and Language

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