1st Edition

Multilingual Learners and Academic Literacies Sociocultural Contexts of Literacy Development in Adolescents

    332 Pages 37 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    332 Pages 37 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Shifting the discourse from a focus on academic language to the more dynamic but less researched construct of academic literacies, this volume addresses three key questions:

    • What constitutes academic literacy?

    • What does academic literacy development in adolescent multilingual students look like and how can this development be assessed?

    • What classroom contexts foster the development of academic literacies in multilingual adolescents?

    The contributing authors provide divergent definitions of academic literacies and use dissimilar theoretical and methodological approaches to study literacy development. Nevertheless, all chapters reflect a shared conceptual framework for examining academic literacies as situated, overlapping, meaning-making practices. This framework foregrounds students’ participation in valued disciplinary literacy practices. Emphasized in the new college and career readiness standards, the notion of disciplinary practices allows the contributing authors to bridge the language/content dichotomy, and take a more holistic as well as nuanced view of the demands that multilingual students face in general education classrooms. The volume also explores the implications of the emphasis on academic literacy practices for classroom instruction, research, and policy.


    Chapter 1. Introduction

    Daniella Molle

    Part I. Academic literacies: A rationale and exploration of the construct

    Chapter 2. Academic language and academic literacies: Mapping a relationship

    Daniella Molle

    Chapter 3. In more than one tongue: Academic literacies at work as living texts

    Marylin Low

    Chapter 4. Adolescent development and everyday language practices: Implications for the academic literacy of multilingual learners

    Alison Bailey, Marjorie Faulstich Orellana

    Chapter 5. A sociocultural approach to academic literacy in mathematics for adolescent English learners: Integrating mathematical proficiency, practices, and discourse

    Judit Moschkovich

    Chapter 6. Translingual literacies in a social media age: Lessons learned from youth’s transnational communication online

    José Ramón Lizárraga, Glynda Hull, John Scott

    Part II. Academic literacy development: Contexts and practices

    Chapter 7. Bilingualism-as-participation: Examining adolescents’ bi(multi)lingual literacies across out-of-school and online contexts

    Mariana Pacheco

    Chapter 8. Academic literacy development: A ten-year case study of an aspiring writer

    Cathy Compton-Lilly

    Chapter 9. Inquire to acquire: A discourse analysis of bilingual students’ development of science literacy

    Laura Wright

    Chapter 10. Schooling begins before adolescence: The case of Manuel and limited opportunities to learn

    Kathy Escamilla

    Part III. Implications of an academic literacies approach to learning

    Chapter 11. The use of assessment in support of the development of adolescents’ academic literacies

    Margaret Heritage

    Chapter 12. Building teacher knowledge of academic literacy and language acquisition: A framework for teachers’ cross-disciplinary professional learning

    Mary Avalos, Margarita Zisselsberger, Jennifer Langer-Osuna, Walter Secada

    Chapter 13. Establishing a foundation for academic literacy: The role of standards

    Edynn Sato

    Chapter 14. Literacy development in academic contexts for adolescent English language learners: Policy considerations and future research

    Timothy Boals, Kenji Hakuta, Alissa Blair

    List of Contributors


    Daniella Molle is a Professional Development Researcher at WIDA, Wisconsin Center for Education Research, University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA.

    Edynn Sato is a Principal Research Scientist in the Research and Innovation Network’s Next Generation Learning and Assessment Center at Pearson, USA.

    Timothy Boals is a Senior Research Scientist at WIDA, Wisconsin Center for Education Research, University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA.

    Carol A. Hedgspeth is a Research Associate at WestEd, USA.