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Double Grant Success from Department of Education

Double Grant Success from Department of Education

Department of Education

The US Department of Education has awarded two large research grants to the Center for Language Acquisition. These awards, from the International Research and Studies Program, will support critical research into the long-term benefits of language study abroad and language learning and teaching in dual-language immersion classrooms. Each project will run for three years. Dr. Kevin McManus, Associate Director of the Center for Language Acquisition, is Co-Principal Investigator on both awards. 

 

Instructional Practices, Proficiency Assessment and Language Development in Dual-Language Immersion Classrooms: A Longitudinal Study 

Research Team:

Brody Bluemel (PI, Delaware State)

Kevin McManus (Co-PI, Penn State)

Jim Lantolf (Consultant, Penn State)

Abstract:

The present study examines instructional practices, assessment, and proficiency development in dual-language programs. We address two primary research questions including, 1) What does standard practice of instruction and learning look like in the dual language classroom, and how does this differ based on demographic/region, and 2) How is student proficiency in the target language, and content learned through the target language, evidenced and evaluated? These two primary questions guide the project in researching and documenting proficiency, effectiveness of the specific dual-language immersion (DLI) model used in Delaware, and the relationship between DLI instruction and learner achievement in the target language and other academic content areas.

 

The Careers of Language Study Abroad Alumni: A Comprehensive Investigation 

Research team:

Celeste Kinginger (Co-PI, Penn State)

Kevin McManus (Co-PI, Penn State)

Robert Schrauf (Co-I, Penn State)

Abstract:

Despite growing participation in international education, little is known about the long-term career pathways and choices of language study abroad alumni. This is a major shortcoming because of the volume of resources the U.S. economy provides to support study abroad, and the significance of language ability to global security and the economic interests of the country. This project will undertake a comprehensive investigation to understand the extent to which foreign language ability developed at the postsecondary level is valued, recognized, and cultivated across the lifespan, and the extent to which this ability contributes to career readiness and offers personal and professional opportunities. We will also examine how and to what extent language ability is supported after study abroad, which program types lead to the greatest long-term impact, and the advantages and challenges that these learners experience.