Valuing the multilingual repertoires of students from African migrant communities at a London university

Odeniyi, Victoria and Lazar, Gillian ORCID logoORCID: (2020) Valuing the multilingual repertoires of students from African migrant communities at a London university. Language, Culture and Curriculum, 33 (20) . pp. 157-171. ISSN 0790-8318 [Article] (doi:10.1080/07908318.2019.1677702)


Drawing on an ethnographic study of academic literacy practices in the applied social sciences, this paper builds on research which seeks to make visible the increasingly complex linguistic diversity in English-dominant universities (Universities in the Anglophone Centre: Sites of multilingualism. In L. Wei (Ed.). Applied linguistics review (Vol. 2, pp. 121-145). Berlin/New York: De Gruyter Mouton) by offering a detailed reading of the multilingual repertoires reported by students who identify with London's African migrant communities. The paper analyses data selected from in-depth interviews with under-graduate students who identify as speakers of English, but also Swahili and the other non-prestige language varieties comprising their complex repertoires (Blommaert, J., & Backus, A. (2011). Repertoires revisited: “Knowing language”. In Superdiversity (Working papers in urban language and literacies 67). London, England: King's College). These repertoires are intertwined with life experiences and we argue that there is a need for a more nuanced faculty understanding of this. While the scope of multilingual repertoires poses some challenges for employing plurilingual pedagogies in curriculum spaces separate from linguistically-oriented programmes, namely the applied social sciences, we suggest that faculty initiatives such as teacher training courses could have a role in raising awareness of hidden repertoires.

Item Type: Article
Research Areas: A. > School of Health and Education > Education
Item ID: 33387
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Depositing User: Gillian Lazar
Date Deposited: 14 Jun 2021 10:10
Last Modified: 08 Jul 2021 23:56

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