Innovation in Language Learning

Edition 17

Accepted Abstracts

Language for Work - Tools for Professional Development

Titika-Konstantina N. Tsintoni, University of Patras (Greece)


Europe is home to many millions of adults – migrants (including refugees) and ethnic minorities – whose first language is different to the majority language of the country where they live. The ability of these adults to secure employment and then progress at work is essential both to their wellbeing and, more broadly, to social stability and economic development across Europe. The recent arrival of large numbers of refugees in Europe makes the issue of integration all the more urgent. Key to this is support for these adults to learn the majority language, particularly in relation to work.
Labour market inclusion is a primary goal of integration policy. For millions of adult migrants in Europe, learning the language of the country of residence (L2) is a key enabler of access to and progression within the labour market. The Language for Work Network (LfW) aims to promote and develop this important area of linguistic integration. Created through a project funded by the Council of Europe’s European Centre for Modern Languages in Graz, this international network brings together researchers, practitioners, policy makers and others from the field of vocational learning and skills. Through its website and programme of activities, LfW shares research, policy and practice across Europe, supporting the full range of practitioners engaged in this field. Language for Work – Tools for professional development uses the European learning network created by the ECML project, Language for Work – Developing migrants’ language competences at work (2012-15), to make these approaches accessible to practitioners involved in work-related majority language learning. It creates a professional development framework to help teachers implement these new approaches. To support refugee integration, the project also develops a ‘quick guide’ with key underlying principles and a selection of effective approaches (including non-formal and informal approaches) to support work-related majority language learning. The project’s ‘Quick guide’ tool offers an at-a-glance overview of the key principles and approaches used to deliver successful work-related linguistic integration of adult migrants, including refugees.

Keywords: foreign language, professional development, international network.


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