Language Education Policy Studies
An International Network
National Kaohsiung Normal University (NKNU)

Kaohsiung, Taiwan, China


Language Education Policy Studies

Theme 2

Comparing Language Curricula in Various Countries

The Common European Framework for Smooth Education Administration in Taiwan



Yuangshan Chuang

Distinguished Professor, English Department

Tajen University

The Common European Framework of References for Language Teaching, Learning, Assessment (CEF) was created by the Council of Europe in 2001, and translated into Chinese and introduced into Taiwan by ROCMELIA in 2007. The translation was funded and the CEF was adopted by the Ministry of Education and the National Personnel Agency in 2005. The Ministry of Education stipulated that all English test institutes should create a CEF reciprocal table for their own English tests. It was also stipulated that all English certificates of passing should bear the CEF level of passing that indicates the ability level based on the Common European Framework. Moreover, certificates from a test institute that has prepared a CEF reciprocal table for their English tests can be accepted by the Ministry of Education for funding allocation. However, based on the research funded by the Academia Sinica in 2006, less than 10 percent of the principles in Taiwan knew what the Common European Framework is, not to mention the significance of it. Nine years have passed since the implementation of the Common European Framework for English certificates in 2005. Very sadly, the English curricula based on the Common European Framework have not yet been discussed. Very few English textbooks were created based on the Common European Framework. To make things even more complicated, NETPAW was recognized by the Ministry of Education and unaccepted by some of the public institutes that do not know the stipulation of the Ministry of Education that any English certificate issued by a test institute that has created a CEF reciprocal table for their English tests can be recognized and accepted. It is proposed that the Ministry of Education issue a document again to all public institutes, re-stating the above stipulation. It is also essential that CEF workshops be offered to teach education administrators and language teachers what the CEF is, the importance of the CEF, and how to use the CEF to come up with an updated curriculum for their language instruction and assessment in the hope that better language acquisition of students can take place.

Presenter: Dr. Yuangshan Chuang is Distinguished Professor of the English Department at Tajen University. Having earned his doctoral degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with computational linguistics as his major, he conducted research in corpus linguistics sponsored by the National Science Council. He has been Dean of The College of Humanities and Director of the Language Center at Kun Shan University, Professor of the English Department at National Kaohsiung Normal University, Member of the English Promotion Committee of the Ministry of Education, Director of the National English Test of Proficiency for All on the Web (NETPAW), Founding President of ROCMELIA, Founding President of APAMALL. He has served at the Department of English at National Kaohsiung Normal University for fourteen years, advising the English doctoral program students. 

A Deficiency of Bilingual Education Policy and its Impact on the Development of Bilingual Education in China


Ph.D., Associate Professor, Deputy Dean

College of Media and Communications

Shanghai International Studies University

Since its entering into the 21st century, China has witnessed the popularity of the English-Chinese bilingual education among teachers, students and their parents.  But no matter what endeavors schools of different levels make to promote its development, not much satisfactory improvement has been achieved. In fact, some problems have hindered its development in a sustainable, rapid and sound manner, including the lack of qualified teachers, appropriate textbooks and teaching materials, and effective teaching models and approaches. By probing into the status quo of the English-Chinese bilingual education in China, the researcher finds out that most of the problems are resulted from the deficiency of bilingual education policy. Take the tertiary education as an example, although the Ministry of Education has issued several regulations concerning the promoting of English-Chinese bilingual education (or instruction) since 2000, they failed to compensate for the deficiency of bilingual education policy, and thus are doomed to be useless to the development of the English-Chinese bilingual education.  Therefore, the researcher calls for the making of relevant policies at different levels.


Presenter: Dr. Ye ZHU is an associate professor of English language and literature at the Shanghai International Studies University, China. His research interests include applied linguistics, bilingual education and intercultural communication. He is the author of about 10 academic monographs, dictionaries and research articles as well as the developer of 5 national English textbooks for university and high school students. He conducted his postdoctoral research “English-Chinese Bilingual Education in China: Problems and Suggested Solutions” at the Shanghai Jiao Tong University from 2008 to 2010. Currently he is writing the book “China’s English-Chinese Bilingual Education in the 21st Century”.

Critical Review of Foreign Language Education Policy and Practice in Japan

Shoichi Matsumura, Professor, Ryukoku University, Japan

Toshinobu Nagamine, Associate Professor, Kumamoto University, Japan

The nation’s recently enacted foreign language education policy requiring English to be taught in all public elementary schools in Japan has shifted from a view of “multilingualism as a resource” toward the imposition of a more “English-centered” foreign language education curriculum. This policy exacerbates the dispute among teachers as to whether English is necessary for all school children, pitting egalitarian views of education against individualized needs-based education. We discuss findings of the research that examined the discrepancy between the policymakers’ intentions and teachers’ execution of that policy. Both quantitative and qualitative data were collected using a questionnaire and through interviews with teachers and Board of Education officials, respectively. Results indicated that 1) deep-seated ideologies favoring English as opposed to other foreign languages were not as prominent among teachers as among policymakers, 2) flexible implementation of the national syllabus is needed to accommodate regional and local needs, and 3) the policy fails to incorporate research-based understanding of the necessary and optimal conditions for English language development. Finally, we discuss several challenges that both researchers and teachers must confront to ensure that Japan’s English education functions as an arena that nurtures healthy multilingual and multicultural interaction.

Presenters: Dr. Shoichi Matsumura is a Professor of English Teacher Preparation Programs in the Faculty of Intercultural Communication at Ryukoku University. He earned a Ph.D. in language education at the University of British Columbia, and has published papers in various international journals including, for example, Applied Linguistics, Language Learning, and Modern Language Journal. His current research interests include issues of EFL teacher development and professionalism, Japan’s foreign language education policy, and quantitative research methodology in educational psychology. Dr. Toshinobu Nagamine is an Associate Professor of English teacher education at Kumamoto University, Japan, where he teaches English phonetics, research methodologies, and EFL teacher education courses. His current research interests include foreign language education policy, language teacher cognition, and EFL teacher education and development. He has served as a visiting scholar of the Afrasian Research Centre, Rhykoku University, Japan, and an editorial board member of the Asian EFL Journal.

A Curriculum for English Language Education in Timor-Leste: conditions of possibility and dilemmas

Maria Alfredo Moreira

Assistant Professor

University of Minho, Portugal

Timor-Leste is a young country, both in its recent history and in population. Following nationwide destruction after independence in 1999, a new educational system was set up. In 2012 a new curriculum for lower secondary education, sponsored by the UNICEF and under the responsibility of the University of Minho, was introduced. The author of the paper was co-responsible for the development of both the syllabi and teacher guides for the English language. The major goal of this curriculum is to improve the academic achievement of East Timorese learners, marked by high ethnic, linguistic, and cultural difference. Besides a focus on communicative competences, the English curriculum also took a multicultural critical perspective, aiming at helping teachers and learners develop a socioculturally conscious and learner empowering perspective. Even though the resulting proposal draw mainly on international research and documented good practices, efforts were taken to make it situationally relevant. Thus, consultancy from key-informants and experimentation in Timor-Leste was also carried out. The paper will focus on the main curricular options. However, as there are political and ideological dilemmas in educational proposals that are mostly externally driven and western dominated, a discussion on these options with the symposium participants will be promoted.


Presenter: Dr. Maria Alfredo Moreira is an Assistant Professor at the University of Minho. She got her MA in Instructional Supervision in English Language Education (1996, University of Aveiro, Portugal), her PhD in Foreign Language Education (2004, University of Minho, Portugal), and did a post-doctoral research on linguistic diversity and social justice teacher education (2012, University of Washington, USA). She participation in international projects on foreign/ second language teacher education, learner autonomy, and curriculum development, sponsored by the UNICEF, the European Union, and national governments. She was program chair for the American Association for the Advancement of Curriculum Studies (in 2012/2013). She also published a large number of articles and book chapters on foreign language education, instructional supervision and teacher education in Portuguese-speaking journals, as well as other international journals. 

Moving Towards Mother Tongue-based Bilingual/multilingual Education in Post-apartheid South Africa: Policy and Reality

Haihong Wang

School of International Study, Zhejiang University, China

The 1997 National Language-in-language Policy in South Africa has introduced new principles and rights of L1 education within the context of “additional bilingual or multi-lingual education” (Doe, 1997) aiming to establish a nation with multilingual diversities but ends up with undesirable realities. This literature study is to review the language-in-education policy in post-apartheid South Africa and its current practice, the education model used in the schools. After apartheid, South Africa, adopting the new ideology of African Renaissance and accordance with the international frameworks, especially with the UNESCO’s Education for All, evolved its language-in-education policy from early-exit transitional bilingual education model and now moves on to mother-tongue based bilingual/multilingual education proposed by a group of grassroots organizations lobby (especially by Project for the Study of Alternative Education in South Africa (PRAESA). However, in reality, the “rainbow” vision for additive multi-linguism is becoming only an illusion or good wishes and the policy implementation encountered lots of difficulties: the present social-economic condition not favoring the development of African languages; the bottom-up practices lacking in political wills and the unavailability of such necessary resources for quality education as teacher education, curriculum development.


Presenter: Dr. Haihong Wang is a faculty member in the School of international Study, Zhejiang University, China, where she teaches language courses like College English and English from the Silver Screen. She is also a PhD candidate in the School of Education, Zhejiang University. Her current research interests include language in-education policy and planning in multi-linguistic contexts (like South Africa, the EU, the USA and China) and EFL language education and development. She has served as a visiting scholar of the University of Wisconsin, Madison, USA.

Bilingual Teaching Models In The Basque Country (1960-2013). A Critical Review

Felix Etxeberria Balerdi

European Chair, JEAN MONNET in Education

University of the Basque Country.

During the Francoist dictatorship (1936-1975), Basque language and culture were banned in the Basque Country. However, from the 60s on, Euskara was tolerated somewhat and the first schools teaching through Basque were opened. After the death of the dictator Franco in 1975 and with the restoration of democracy, there was a great expansion of the Basque language and, in the 80s, Euskara became the official language of the Basque Country. The first ikastolas (ikastola = school in Basque) appeared in the sixties, and teaching in these was carried out entirely in Basque. The majority of pupils and teachers were Basque speakers. The following decade, however, saw the pupil composition change fundamentally. Spanish-speaking families and pupils were enrolling for the schools in Euskara in ever-increasing numbers. With this increase, in the 80s a profound transformation took place. In order to respond to the different sociocultural situations - family motivations, sociolinguistic zones, the training of teachers, and for educational, political and other reasons -, bilingual education in the Basque Country was organised in three levels or models (A, B, D), going from a minimum use of the Basque language (A), to an instrumental use of it in learning through Basque (D). In model B, both Spanish and Basque are used as a vehicle of learning, about 50% in each. This presentation shows that, 30 years after this three-tier system being introduced, today we can affirm that the system has made important achievements: 1) facilitating the massive and conflict-free incorporation of families into the most intensive models (D+B make up 95% of the overall intake); 2) enabling the gradual qualification in proficiency in Basque of the teaching staff; 3) facilitating the recovery of Euskara for new generations of students; 4) resulting in internal and external evaluations (PISA 2003-20012) showing that, besides learning the Basque language, the academic performance of pupils studying in Euskara is a successful one. 

Presenter: Felix Etxeberria, Doctorate in Child Education and Diploma in Psychology, is professor of Education at the University of the Basque Country. He is also Jean Monnet Professor (Education and European Construction). His main research lines are bilingualism and education, education with immigrants, school drop-out and failure, and violence at school. He has published many articles and books on those topics and his latest works are Basque, Spanish and Immigrant Minority Languages in Basque School, (2008), Integración del alumnado inmigrante: obstáculos y propuestas (2010), Alumnado inmigrante: entre la marginación y la asimilación (2010).

A Survey on Bilingual Teaching Models Practicing at Primary Schools in China’s an Ethnic Minority County Xi Meng

Ping Zhao

College of Foreign Languages,

Yunnan Agricultural University, China

Practicing bilingual teaching is a key of China’s policy to minority language education. It has been concluded that there are at least 5 major types of bilingual teaching models in China(Zhou Qing-sheng,2004): Type I. Courses are taught in students’ native language(referring to different minority languages), with one extra setting up taught in second-language(referring to Chinese, the mainstream in China); Type II. Courses are taught in second-language, with one extra setting up taught in native language; Type III. Courses are partially taught in native language and partially in second-language, without extra course; Type IV. All courses are taught in both native language and second language (only practiced at primary schools); Type V. All courses are taught loosely in second language with native language used as an assistance to help students acquire knowledge (only practiced for juniors at primary schools).

Xi Meng, located in the southwest of China, is a minority autonomous county where the amount of minority people (Wa, Dai and Lahu, etc.) accounts for nearly 94% of its total population. The practice of bilingual teaching there hence reflects its great significance. This survey thereby aims to learn about how bilingual teaching practices at primary schools in the region, with major concerns about: 1)what type (types) of the teaching models is (are) adopted, or whether in some other specific forms; 2)what factors influence choosing the model (models), how and why?; 3) how the teaching model (models) function(s). And perspective for future development would be presented finally.


Presenter: Ping Zhao is a faculty member in the College of Foreign Languages of Yunnan Agricultural University, Kunming, China, where she teaches language courses like Intensive Reading, Teaching Methodology to undergraduates (English majors), and Tea Art English to graduate students (non-English majors). She is now a PhD candidate in the Shanghai International Studies University (SISU). Her major study concerns include protection and development of ethnic minority endangered language (especially in Yunnan), introduction of tea art culture in English, and EFL language education and development as well. 

Spring 2014 Inleps  

will be held in KAOHSIUNG, TAIWAN

at the National Kaohsiung Normal University (NKNU)

Lodging at the Evergreeen Hotel, nearby


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