Equipping teachers with pedagogical competences to handle and harness linguistic diversity

Mari Bergroth, Júlia Llompart, Jenni Alisaari, Leena Maria Heikkola

Forskningsoutput: Kapitel i bok/rapport/konferenshandlingKapitelVetenskapligPeer review


Linguistic diversity is addressed in various educational discourses, but it is often placed within a wider abstract framework, making it difficult to concretize in teacher training. In this article we explore how linguistic diversity is connected to such frameworks as sustainable development (United Nations, 2015), inclusive education (UNESCO, 1994), and (global) citizenship education (UNESCO, 2022a). Drawing on rich data from several recent research projects that the authors either led or participated in, which were related to linguistic and cultural diversity and teacher training, we aim to deepen the understanding of how different educational actors in both teacher education and schools navigate the policy intentions and the practical implementation of educational policies. We situate the study in two (non-English) multilingual educational contexts, Finland, and Spain. We argue, on the basis of our prior findings, that (future) teachers are, in general, well equipped with awareness of the policies that promote the added value of linguistic diversity. Despite this growing awareness and appreciation of linguistic diversity as presented in the educational policy frameworks, the discourses show that diversity is a complex educational topic. On the one hand, diversity needs to be handled to be able to safeguard social cohesion and securing that all children and youth have equal opportunities to thrive in their lives. On the other hand, diversity also needs to be harnessed to enrichen the societies both economically and culturally and to provide our youths with possibilities to explore and add layers to their linguistic identities. By narrowing this down to linguistic diversity in particular, the findings show that teachers need to be equipped with pedagogical multilingual competences to both handle and harness diversity if we intend to turn abstract awareness into concrete pedagogical actions.
Titel på värdpublikationMultilingualism, Multiculturalism and Inclusive Education
RedaktörerSviatlana Karpava
Status!!Accepted/In press - 2024
MoE-publikationstypA3 Del av bok eller annan forskningsbok


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