Lecturer and student perceptions on CLIL at a Spanish university

International Journal of Bilingual Education and Bilingualism (Impact Factor: 0.81). 03/2012; 15:183-197. DOI: 10.1080/13670050.2011.615906

ABSTRACT This study reports on a pilot implementation of Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL) at a Spanish university. In order to find out how both lecturers and students perceived their experience, several interviews and meetings took place with lecturers, and an open-ended questionnaire was passed to students. The meetings and interviews with lecturers yielded important information about their satisfaction. It was found out that lecturers were mostly interested in practising and improving their English spoken fluency, they did not feel that the quality of their teaching had been sacrificed, they had not included any question on language learning in their assessment and they showed great reluctance to receiving any CLIL methodological training. As to students' reactions, analysis of their questionnaires revealed that most of them found the experience positive. Their self-reported perceived gains unanimously point to the specialised vocabulary they have learnt and, in the second place, to an improvement of their listening and speaking skills. The most outstanding negative aspect they found is lecturers’ insufficient level of English. CLIL training specially adapted to university teachers is necessary so that lecturers can overcome their reluctance to a methodological training and thereby the potential of CLIL is realised.

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    ABSTRACT: This study focuses on disciplinary teachers’ perceptions of International Classroom Affordances (ICA) during English-medium education in a multilingual university setting (EMEMUS) in Austria. The main aim is to generate a conceptual model grounded in the data that points to the perceptual mechanisms of disciplinary teachers involved in this particular case study. Another aim is in line with the research identity of the author who seeks to exercise activist agency by facilitating a shift in perspective by those engaged in English-medium teaching. This research falls under the constructivist-interpretive paradigm within the boundaries of an ecological context and draws on the works of the perceptual psychologist Gibson (1986; 1977) and the sociologist Giddens (1984) who take organism-environment reciprocity as a central element of their theoretical foundations. Constructivist Grounded Theory (Charmaz, 2014, 2008, 2006), enriched by crucial elements of Nexus Analysis (Scollon & Scollon, 2013, 2004, 2002) has provided the methodological underpinning for this research. The systematic application of research methods anchored in the qualitative tradition and their subsequent analysis has resulted in the ICA model as the final outcome of this Constructivist Grounded Theory. By raising the agents’ descriptive accounts to the analytical level required for grounded theory research, it was sought to identify various contextual layers that allow for the generation of inductive and middle-range theory (Charmaz, 2008). Findings leading to the ICA model suggest that teachers perceive ICA on four analytical levels (at the framing, reacting, appropriating and embracing stage). They were found to appropriate their classroom practices in line with the emergent action possibilities they were able to perceive. The sequential affordance-based perception process largely depended on their subjective grounds for action and reflection, but was also stimulated by the researcher in form of itineraries of transformation. Personal agency coupled with hardened internalised societal patterns and the positivist conception of institutional rules were identified as the biggest defordances in EMEMUS.
    12/2014, Degree: Doctor of Philosophy, Supervisor: Prof. Dr. Ute Smit
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    Cross-Curricular Approaches to Language Education, 01/2015: chapter 15: pages 289-304; Cambridge Scholars.
  • Cross-Curricular Approaches to Language Education, Edited by Psaltou-Joycey, E. Agathopoulou and M. Mattheoudakis, 01/2014: chapter 15: pages 289-304; Cambridge Scholars.