UCL Discovery
UCL home » Library Services » Electronic resources » UCL Discovery

Questioning the Sustainability of English-Medium Instruction Policy in Science Classrooms: Teachers’ and Students’ Experiences at a Hong Kong Secondary School

Pun, Jack; Thomas, Nathan; Bowen, Neil Evan Jon Anthony; (2022) Questioning the Sustainability of English-Medium Instruction Policy in Science Classrooms: Teachers’ and Students’ Experiences at a Hong Kong Secondary School. Sustainability , 14 (4) , Article 2168. 10.3390/su14042168. Green open access

[thumbnail of Thomas_sustainability-14-02168-v2.pdf]
Preview
Text
Thomas_sustainability-14-02168-v2.pdf - Published Version

Download (327kB) | Preview

Abstract

Teaching science through English as a medium of instruction (EMI) is a growing phenomenon around the world. In Hong Kong, this was realised on a large scale in 2010, with the implementation of a “fine-tuning” compulsory language policy. This allowed Chinese-medium schools to adopt EMI fully. Yet, despite such rapid and widespread adoption, an adequate understanding of key stakeholders’ experiences in relation to their perceptions of what constitutes effective EMI science education remains scarce. Thus, we question the sustainability of EMI programs that are driven by top-down policy. In this case study, we explore the perspectives and experiences of six EMI science teachers and thirteen of their students as their secondary school transitions from partial to full EMI. From in-depth interviews (complemented by classroom observations), findings reveal that the transition to full EMI has presented challenges that appear to hinder students’ development of scientific knowledge and the language of science in English. This directly counters the primary goal of the fine-tuning policy. Nevertheless, findings also illuminate a number of coping strategies teachers and students use to deal with their changing curricula. Overall, we offer insights into this under-researched context of transitioning EMI programs and provide recommendations for future research and practice.

Type: Article
Title: Questioning the Sustainability of English-Medium Instruction Policy in Science Classrooms: Teachers’ and Students’ Experiences at a Hong Kong Secondary School
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.3390/su14042168
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.3390/su14042168
Language: English
Additional information: © 2022 MDPI. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
Keywords: language of science; L2 science education; EMI adoption; translanguaging; language challenges; coping strategies; teacher/student perspectives
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education > IOE - Culture, Communication and Media
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education
UCL
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10144124
Downloads since deposit
154Downloads
Download activity - last month
Download activity - last 12 months
Downloads by country - last 12 months

Archive Staff Only

View Item View Item