LLAS News Blog

News articles of interest to higher education LLAS subject fields.

Saturday, 16 April 2011

Threat to languages and Caribbean Studies at London Met

London Metropolitan University's vice-chancellor, Professor Malcolm Gillies, plans to reduce the number of undergraduate degrees from 557 to 160 by the autumn of next year.

History and philosophy are among those earmarked for closure. The university also plans to shut down its degree programme in Caribbean studies – the only one in the UKOther courses to go include theatre studies, trade union studies, dance, parts of multimedia, , performing arts and modern languages.

The Guardian

Language universality idea tested with biology method

A long-standing idea that human languages share universal features that are dictated by human brain structure has been cast into doubt.

A study reported in Nature has borrowed methods from evolutionary biology to trace the development of grammar in several language families.

BBC website

Nature article

Thursday, 14 April 2011

UHI cuts six Gaelic posts

Dismayed funders question viability of institution's language-promotion mission. Hannah Fearn writes

A Scottish university with a mission to preserve and develop the Gaelic language has axed six posts in its Gaelic team, leaving non-speakers in charge of the strategy.

Among the positions cut by the University of the Highlands and Islands, which gained university status earlier this year, is that of its Gaelic manager.
Times Higher Education

Teaching English overseas: Graduates with a foreign language have a huge edge in the job market

There are pros and cons about being a native speaker of English. One advantage, of course, is the ease with which English speakers can move around the world, on holiday or on business. But a disadvantage is that it breeds laziness. Far too many of us Brits, either consciously or unconsciously, don't really bother with learning a foreign language.

The Independent

Friday, 8 April 2011

CILT news: Powerful new partnerships launched for languages support

Following productive discussions with the coalition Government about the future of support for language teaching and learning, CILT, the National Centre for Languages is to merge with the education charity CfBT Education Trust with effect from today. Its branch in Cardiff, CILT Cymru, which is funded by the Welsh Assembly Government, will continue to provide services to teachers in Wales by merging with the WJEC. The brands and core objectives of both CILT, the National Centre for Languages, and CILT Cymru will remain unaffected.

CILT, the National Centre for Languages website