Peer-Reviewed Journal Details
Mandatory Fields
Earls, Clive, Riordan, Emma, Furlong, Aine, Flynn, Colin & Benini, Sylvia
The All Ireland Journal of Teaching and Learning In Higher Education
The Complex and Changing Face of Higher-Education Language Teaching in the Republic of Ireland.
Optional Fields
Degree programmes; Language learning;Organisational structures;Staff categories.
The landscape of language learning and teaching in higher education (HE) in Ireland is complex and varied. Between institutions, a diversity of organisational structures are identifiable and, even within institutions, it can be seen that the provision of language education can vary significantly. In this paper, we present an overview of complexity within language education in Irish higher education which we investigated as part of our scoping exercise for the Higher Education Language Educator Competences (HELECs) project. In order to manage this complexity, we have taken a number of different approaches to gathering and analysing relevant data. Firstly, we attempt to ascertain which languages are offered and the programmes within which they are available. We rely here on data gathered by Post-Primary Languages Ireland (PPLI) and published on the Careers Portal website. Secondly, we present an analysis of the structure of language provision units within Universities and Institutes of Technology (IoTs). These data are publicly available through the institutionsí websites. Thirdly, we provide a detailed examination of the complex constellation of staff profiles involved in language education at four institutions representing the categories of higher education institutions (HEIs) in the system. We interrogate language unitsí websites to obtain this information and augment it with data gathered through the HELECs project. In presenting these data, we aim to provide an overview of the landscape of language teaching and learning in HE in Ireland. In conducting this data analysis, we identify areas of concern for the sector including: the visibility of languages within HEIs; the multiplicity of professional identities of those who teach language in HE; and issues of precarity of employment and career progression in HE language education.
Grant Details
National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education