South African Teachers' Language Practices and Attitudes: Indigenous Languages in the English Language Classroom

Document Type

Grant Proposal

Date Accepted

Summer 2008

Project Description/Abstract

I am requesting funds to complete the final stages of a qualitative study that explores South African teachers’ language attitudes as they pertain to pedagogical practices in schools where the majority of learners are isiZulu mother tongue speakers and the medium of instruction is English. The data for this project include teacher surveys, journals, interview transcripts, and ethnographic participant observation logs that were collected during the professional development workshop in the Pietermaritzburg area of KwaZulu-Natal in July of 2006. Because the data collection for the project has already been accomplished, I am asking to fund the final stages of the project, namely, the completion of data analysis and the writing process. The project will contribute to the debate on the validity of using indigenous languages for instructional purposes in the classroom where English is the official medium of instruction and will advance our understanding of current language attitudes among South African teachers working in multilingual contexts.

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