European Journal of Language Policy

A multilingual background for telecollaboration

Practices and policies in European higher education

European Journal of Language Policy (2019), 11, (2), 235–255.


Details

The Trans-Atlantic and Pacific Project (TAPP) is a telecollaboration network linking European university classes with classes in the US and beyond for nearly 20 years. Such collaborations have enabled students to participate in realistic projects, fostering transversal and language skills – including English as a lingua franca – which are highlighted in university policies at European, country/region and institutional levels. In turn, telecollaboration can support Internationalisation at Home, along with virtual mobility objectives, increasingly prominent in European higher education.

Considering the grassroots nature of TAPP, whose instructors design their own partnerships and assignments, this contribution examines TAPP projects in light of language policies from a dual bottom-up/top-down perspective. Thus, considering the importance of language policies of several European countries involved in TAPP (Belgium, France, Italy, Spain), this paper analyses how TAPP teaching-learning practices align with such policies in terms of multilingualism and interculturality.

Attention is paid to students’ roles – subject-matter experts, linguists/translators, project managers, usability experts – and their native languages. Emphasis is placed on how students relate to English from their various perspectives as native speakers, second-language speakers, language experts or language learners. Lessons derived from the analysis of such practices can inform policy makers as they make provisions for Internationalisation at Home, mainly in Europe, while also introducing comparisons between European and US perspectives.

References

Aguilar, M. (2018) ‘Integrating Intercultural Competence in ESP and EMI: from Theory to Practice’, ESP Today 6: 25–43. Google Scholar

Alam, E. (2016) ‘During World War I, Minnesota Nativists Waged an All Out War on German Culture in the State’, 5 January, MinnPost. Available at: https://www.minnpost.com/mnopedia/2016/01/during-world-war-i-minnesota-nativists-wagedall-out-war-german-culture-state/ (accessed 3 March 2019). Google Scholar

Al-Tamimi, A. and Shuib, M. (2009) ‘Motivation and Attitudes Towards Learning English: A Study of Petroleum Engineering Undergraduates at Hadhramout University of Sciences and Technology’, GEMA Online Journal of Language Studies 9(2): 29–55. Google Scholar

Beelen, J. and Jones, E. (2015) ‘Redefining Internationalization at Home’, in A. Curaj, L. Matei, R. Pricopie, J. Salvi, and P. Scott (eds), The European Higher Education Area. New York: Springer, 59–72. Google Scholar

Byram, M. and F. Dervin (2008) Students, Staff and Academic Mobility. Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars Press. Google Scholar

Campbell, S. (2005) ‘English Translation and Linguistic Hegemony in the Global Era’, in G. Anderman and M. Rogers (eds), In and Out of English: For Better, for Worse? Clevedon: Multilingual Matters, 27–38. Google Scholar

Canagarajah, A.S. (2006) ‘The Place of World Englishes in Composition: Pluralization Continued’. College Composition and Communication 57(4): 586–619. Google Scholar

Clément, R., Dörnyei, Z. and Noels, K.A. (1994) ‘Motivation, Self-Confidence, and Group Cohesion in the Foreign Language Classroom’, Language Learning 44(3): 417–48. Google Scholar

Codex Hoger Onderwijs (2013) §2, Art.II.261, Afdeling 2, Hoofdstuk 8, Titel 4, Deel 2. Available at: https://codex.vlaanderen.be/PrintDocument.ashx?id=1023887&datum=&geannoteerd=false&print=false (accessed 15 September 2019). Google Scholar

Cogo, A. and Jenkins, J. (2010) ‘English as a Lingua Franca in Europe: A Mismatch between Policy and Practice’, European Journal of Language Policy 2(2): 271–94. Google Scholar

Cots, J.M., Aguilar, M., Mas-Alcolea, S. and Llanes, A. (2016) ‘Studying the Impact of Academic Mobility on Intercultural Competence: A Mixed-Methods Perspective’, Language Learning Journal 44: 304–22. Google Scholar

Cots, J.M., Lasagabaster, D. and Garrett, P. (2012) ‘Multilingual Policies and Practices of Universities in Three Bilingual Regions in Europe’, International Journal of the Sociology of Language 216: 7–32. Google Scholar

Cots, J.M., Llurda, E. and Garrett, P. (2014) ‘Language Policies and Practices in the Internationalisation of Higher Education on the European Margins: An Introduction’, Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development 35(4): 311–17. Google Scholar

Crystal, D. (2003) English as a Global Language. 2nd ed. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Google Scholar

De Wit, H. (2016) ‘Internationalisation and the Role of Online Intercultural Exchange’, in R. O’Dowd and T. Lewis (eds), Online Intercultural Exchange: Policy, Pedagogy, Practice. London: Routledge, 69–82. Google Scholar

Dimova, S., Hultgren, A.K. and Jensen, C. (eds) (2015) ‘English-Medium Instruction in European Higher Education’, Language and Social Life 4. Berlin: De Gruyter Mouton. Google Scholar

Dörnyei, Z. (1994) ‘Motivation and Motivating in the Foreign Language Classroom’, The Modern Language Journal 78(3): 273–84. Google Scholar

EHEA (n.d.). European Higher Education Area and Bologna process. Available at: http://www.ehea.info/ (accessed 29 January 2019). Google Scholar

EHEA Ministerial Conference (2012a) 2012 Bucharest Communiqué. Available at: http://www.ehea.info/media.ehea.info/file/2012_Bucharest/67/3/Bucharest_Communique_2012_610673.pdf (accessed 14 January 2018). Google Scholar

EHEA Ministerial Conference (2012b) Mobility strategy 2020 for the European Higher Education Area (EHEA). Available at: http://www.ehea.info/media.ehea.info/file/Mobility/35/5/11032011_Draft_working_paper_on_Mobility_strategy_2020_for_EHEA_606355.doc (accessed 14 January 2019). Google Scholar

EHEA Ministerial Conference (2018) Statement of the Fifth Bologna Policy Forum. Paris, May 25th 2018. Available at: http://www.ehea.info/media.ehea.info/file/2018_Paris/36/8/BPFStatement_with_Annex_958368.pdf (accessed 14 January 2019). Google Scholar

Estes Brewer, P. and St. Amant, K. (2015) ‘Education and Training for Globally-Distributed Virtual Teams: Preparing the Workforce of the Future’, connexions: International Professional Communication Journal 3(1): 3–7. Google Scholar

Europa.eu (2018) Erasmus+ Virtual Exchange: Cross-cultural Experiences. Available at: http://europa.eu/youth/erasmusvirtual_en (accessed 16 April 2018). Google Scholar

Gardner, H. (1983) Frames of Mind: the Theory of Multiple Intelligences. New York: Basic Books. Google Scholar

Gardner, R.C. (2004) Attitude/Motivation Test Battery: International AMTB Research Project (English version). University of Western Ontario, Canada. Available at: publish.uwo.ca/~gardner/docs/englishamtb.pdf (accessed 3 March 2019). Google Scholar

Ghent University (2018–2019) Education and Examination Code: Academic Year 2018–2019. Available at: https://www.ugent.be/student/en/class-exam-exchange-intern/class-exam/OEREnglish (accessed 3 March 2019). Google Scholar

González, J. and Wagenaar, R. (2003) Tuning Educational Structures in Europe. Bilbao: Universidad de Deusto. Available at: http://tuningacademy.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/TuningEUI_Final-Report_SP.pdf (accessed 3 March 2019). Google Scholar

Gonzalez-Ardeo, J.M. (2016) ‘Engineering Students’ Instrumental Motivation and Positive Attitude towards Learning English in a Trilingual Tertiary Setting’, Ibérica 32: 179–200. Google Scholar

Guth, S. and Helm, F. (2010) Telecollaboration 2.0: Language and Intercultural Learning in the 21st Century. Bern: Peter Lang. Google Scholar

Hazelkorn, E. (2011) Rankings and the Reshaping of Higher Education: The Battle for World-Class Excellence. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Google Scholar

Helm, F. (2018) ‘The Long and Winding Road…’, Journal of Virtual Exchange 1: 41–63. Google Scholar

Hooghe, L. (1993) ‘Belgium: From Regionalism to Nationalism’, Regional Politics and Policy 3(1): 44–68. Available at: https://ir.lib.uwo.ca/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1042&context=economicsperg_ppe (accessed 14 January 2019). Google Scholar

Horner, B., Lu, M.-Z., Royster, J. and Trimbur, J. (2011a) ‘Language Difference in Writing: Towards a Translingual Approach’, College English 73(3): 303–21. Google Scholar

Horner, B., NeCamp, S. and Donahue, C. (2011b) ‘Toward a Multilingual Composition Scholarship: From English Only to a Translingual Norm’, College Composition and Communication 63(2): 269–300. Available at: http://www.jstor.org/stable/23131585 (accessed 3 March 2019). Google Scholar

Horner, B. and Trimbur, J. (2002) ‘English Only and U.S. College Composition’, College Composition and Communication 53(4): 594–630. Google Scholar

House, J. (2003) ‘English as a Lingua Franca: A Threat to Multilingualism?’, Journal of Sociolinguistics 7(4): 556–78. Google Scholar

Humbley, J., Maylath, B., Mousten, B., Vandepitte, S. and Veisblat, L. (2005) ‘Learning Localization through Trans-Atlantic Collaboration’, in G. F. Hayhoe (ed.), Proceedings of the IEEE International Professional Communication Conference, 10–13 July 2005, U of Limerick, Ireland. New York: IEEE, 578–95. Available at: http://doi.ieeecomputersociety.org/10.1109/IPCC.2005.1494227 (accessed 3 March 2019). Google Scholar

Jones, E. (2013) ‘Internationalization and employability: the role of intercultural experiences in the development of transferable skills’, Public Money and Management 33(2): 95–104. Google Scholar

Jones, E. (2016) ‘Mobility, Graduate Employability and Local Internationalisation’, in E. Jones, R. Coelen, J. Beelen and H. de Wit (eds), Global and Local Internationalization. New York: Sense International, 35–42. Google Scholar

Lanvers, U. and Hultgren, A.K. (2018) ‘The Englishization of European Education’, European Journal of Language Policy 10(1): 1–11. Google Scholar

Leask, B. (2015) Internationalizing the Curriculum. London: Routledge. Google Scholar

Liddicoat, A.J. (2017) Language Policy and Planning in Universities: Teaching, Research and Administration. London: Routledge. Google Scholar

Louwerse, H., Renkema, J., Stronks, E. and van Erve, I. (2018) De staat van het Nederlands in de wereld. Veldonderzoek van de Internationale Vereniging voor Neerlandistiek. Internationale Vereniging voor Neerlandistiek. Available at: https://www.ivn.nu/rapport-115 (accessed 6 June 2019). Google Scholar

Maylath, B., King, T. and Arnó-Macià, E. (2013) ‘Linking Engineering Students in Spain and Technical Writing Students in the U.S. as Co-authors: The Challenge and Outcomes of Subject-Matter Experts and Language Specialists Collaborating Internationally’, connexions: International Professional Communication Journal 1(2): 150–85. Available at: https://connexionsj.files.wordpress.com/2013/09/maylath_king_arno-macia.pdf (accessed 3 March 2019). Google Scholar

Maylath, B., Vandepitte, S., Minacori, P., Isohella, S., Mousten, B. and Humbley, J. (2013) ‘Managing Complexity: A Technical Communication/Translation Case Study in Multilateral International Collaboration’, Technical Communication Quarterly 22(1): 67–84. Google Scholar

Maylath, B., Vandepitte, S. and Mousten, B. (2008) ‘Growing Grassroots Partnerships: Trans-Atlantic Collaboration between American Instructors and Students of Technical Writing and European Instructors and Students of Translation’, in D. Stärke-Meyerring and M. Wilson (eds), Designing Global Learning Environments: Visionary Partnerships, Policies, and Pedagogies. Rotterdam: Sense Publishers, 52–66. Google Scholar

Meylaerts, R. and du Plessis, T. (2016) ‘Multilingualism Studies and Translation Studies: Still a Long Road Ahead’, in Y. Gambier and L. Van Doorslaer (eds), Border Crossings: Translation Studies and Other Disciplines. Amsterdam: John Benjamins, 263–86. Google Scholar

Ministerio de Educación, Cultura y Deporte (2014) Estrategia par la internacionalización de las universidades españolas 2015–2020. Resumen Ejecutivo. Available at: http://sede.educacion.gob.es/publiventa/estrategia-para-la-internacionalizacion-de-las-universidades-espanolas-2015–2020-resumen-ejecutivo/universidad/21476 (accessed 3 March 2019). Google Scholar

Mousten, B., Humbley, J., Maylath, B. and Vandepitte, S. (2012) ‘Communicating Pragmatics about Content and Culture in Virtually Mediated Educational Environments’, in K. St. Amant and S. Kelsey (eds), Computer-Mediated Communication across Cultures: International Interactions in Online Environments. Hershey, PA: IGI Global, 312–27. Google Scholar

Mousten, B., Vandepitte, S. and Maylath, B. (2008) ‘Intercultural Collaboration in the Trans-Atlantic Project: Pedagogical Theories and Practices in Teaching Procedural Instructions across Cultural Contexts’, in D. Stärke-Meyerring and M. Wilson (eds), Designing Globally Networked Learning Environments: Visionary Partnerships, Policies, and Pedagogies. Rotterdam: Sense Publishers, 129–44. Google Scholar

O’Dowd, R. (2018) ‘From Telecollaboration to Virtual Exchange: State-of-the-Art and the Role of UNICollaboration in Moving Forward’, Journal of Virtual Exchange 1: 1–23. Google Scholar

Phillipson, R. (2009) ‘English in Higher Education: Panacea or Pandemic?’, in P. Harder (ed.), English in Denmark: Language Policy, Internationalization and University Teaching. Angles on the English-Speaking World 9, 29–57. Google Scholar

Rippley, L.V.J. (1981) ‘Conflict in the Classroom: Anti-Germanism in Minnesota Schools, 1917–19’, Minnesota History 47(5): 170–83. Google Scholar

Sadler, R. and Dooly, M. (2016) ‘Twelve Years of Telecollaboration: What We Have Learnt’, ELT Journal 70(4): 401–13. Google Scholar

Spolsky, B. (2004) Language Policy. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Google Scholar

Steunpunt Taalwetwijzer (s.d.). Available at: http://www.taalwetwijzer.be/ (accessed 15 September 2019). Google Scholar

Vandepitte, S., Maylath, B., Mousten, B., Isohella, S. and Minacori, P. (2016) ‘Multilateral Collaboration between Technical Communicators and Translators: A Case Study of New Technologies and Processes’, The Journal of Specialised Translation 26: 3–19. Google Scholar

Verzella, M. (2018) ‘Virtual Exchange between Cross-Cultural Teams: A Sustainable Path to the Internationalization of College Courses’, Transformative Dialogues: Teaching and Learning Journal 11(3): 1–13. Google Scholar

If you have private access to this content, please log in with your username and password here

Author details

Arnó-Macià, Elisabet

Vandepitte, Sonia

Minacori, Patricia

Musacchio, Maria Teresa

Hanson, Joleen

Maylath, Bruce