Multilingual Learning and Language Supportive Pedagogies in Sub-Saharan Africa  book cover
1st Edition

Multilingual Learning and Language Supportive Pedagogies in Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Available for pre-order on December 19, 2022. Item will ship after January 9, 2023
ISBN 9780367677527
January 9, 2023 Forthcoming by Routledge
306 Pages 41 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

This edited collection provides unprecedented insight into the emerging field of multilingual education in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). Multilingual education is claimed to have many benefits, amongst which are that it can improve both content and language learning, especially for learners who may have low ability in the medium of instruction and are consequently struggling to learn. The book represents a range of Sub-Saharan school contexts and describes how multilingual strategies have been developed and implemented within them to support the learning of content and language. It looks at multilingual learning from several points of view, including ‘translanguaging’, or the use of multiple languages – and especially African languages – for learning and language-supportive pedagogy, or the implementation of a distinct pedagogy to support learners working through the medium of a second language.

The book puts forward strategies for creating materials, classroom environments and teacher education programmes which support the use of all of a student’s languages to improve language and content learning. The contexts which the book describes are challenging, including low school resourcing, poverty and low literacy in the home, and school policy which militates against the use of African languages in school. The volume also draws on multilingual education approaches which have been successfully carried out in higher resource countries and lend themselves to being adapted for use in SSA. It shows how multilingual learning can bring about transformation in education and provides inspiration for how these strategies might spread and be further developed to improve learning in schools in SSA and beyond.

Chapter 3 of this book is freely available as a downloadable Open Access PDF under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivatives 4.0 license available at

Table of Contents

List of figures List of tables List of contributors Preface by Casmir M. Rubagumya Acknowledgements 1. Introduction: Multilingual Learning and Language Supportive Pedagogies in Sub-Saharan Africa Part 1: What Does Research Tell Us about the Status of Multilingual Learning in SSA? 2. Research in Multilingual Learning in Africa: Assessing the Effectiveness of Multilingual Education Programming 3. Researching Kreol Seselwa and its Role in Education in the Pursuit of Educational Equity in the Seychelles 4. Classroom Talk in Ghanaian Upper Primary Schools: Understanding English-Only, Teacher-Dominant Practices Part 2: Multilingual Learning in Pre-Primary, Primary and Secondary Schools: Lessons Learned 5. Apprenticeships in Meaning: Transforming Opportunities for Oral and Written Language Learning in the Early Years 6. Vignette: Our Experiences of Enhancing the Quality of Early Childhood Education in Rural Cameroon and Kenya by Drawing on Local Languages 7. Multilingual Learning in Anglophone Sub-Saharan Africa: How to Help Children Use All their Languages to Learn 8. Vignette: Implementing Language Supportive Pedagogy to Support Content Learning in Tanzania 9. Creating Translanguaging Inquiry Spaces in Bilingual Classrooms 10. Vignette: Using the Community to Foster English-Kiswahili Bilingualism in Kenya Part 3: Multilingual Resource Development and Teacher Education 11. Multilingual and Language-Supportive Teaching in Rwandan Learning Materials 12. Translanguaging, Multimodality, and Authorship: Cultivating Creativity and Critical Literacies through Multilingual Education in Tanzania 13. Vignette: Creating Multilingual Resources as Part of Teacher Education in Uganda 14. Processes of Pedagogic Change: Integrating Subject and Language Learning through Teacher Education Index

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Elizabeth J. Erling is an educational research consultant who has worked in international education and English language teaching initiatives at the Open University, UK, the University of Graz and the University of Vienna, Austria.

John Clegg is a freelance education consultant and occasional research at the Graduate School of Education, University of Bristol, UK.

Casmir M. Rubagumya is a professor of Language Education at St. John's University of Tanzania, Tanzania.

Colin Reilly is a senior research officer in the Department of Language and Linguistics at the University of Essex, UK.