2015 CAER/Soillse Conference: 28th – 30th May

January 29, 2015

Bilingual Education and Language Revitalisation: From Theory to Practice

We are pleased to provide advance notice of the second Soillse conference, ‘Bilingual Education and Language Revitalisation: From Theory to Practice, which is being held in conjunction with CAER, the Education Society of the European Regions, and hosted by Sabhal Mòr Ostaig UHI.

Overall Rationale

There is unprecedented public support and political will for Gaelic to be revitalised and maintained as an everyday language in Scottish life. Interventions in education, media and public affairs are markedly changing the way Gaelic is adopted and used. Concurrently, changing societal conditions are giving rise to increasingly fluid and diverse ways of being a bilingual Gaelic speaker. The nature, scale and pace of these transformations in Gaelic bilingualism present a set of new challenges for initiatives to support the learning and use of Gaelic. These transformations are not unique to Gaelic, but extend to Irish, Welsh, Euskara, and other minority languages in European society.

This conference aims to provide a forum for Gaelic and other minority language practitioners, educationists, activists, policy makers and researchers to explore and exchange research findings, experience and perspectives in minority language teaching and learning and bilingualism. Building on the success of the first Soillse conference organised in 2011, the conference will again be a platform for analysis and debate over the changing use of minority languages. It aims to stimulate fresh perspectives on language revitalisation and to identify new areas for collaboration.

The two-day conference will consist of key note presentations delivered by eminent guest speakers on bilingualism, and moderated workshops which have been divided into six thematic areas:
• Language socialisation and the community
• The media in the language revitalisation debate
• Dynamic pedagogy and methodologies in minority language education
• Adult learners and community language learning
• Professional engagement with the speaker community
• Education and reversing language shift

We invite language planners, language educators, service providers, language activists and researchers to take part in the analysis and debate over minority language sociolinguistic trajectories at this two-day conference at Scotland’s Gaelic college in the beautiful Isle of Skye.

Here is a bilingual introduction by Professor Conchúr Ó Giollagáin and Dr Timothy Currie Armstrong, and an invitation to attend.

For further information, please see the Sabhal Mòr Ostaig website: http://www.smo.uhi.ac.uk/en/rannsachadh/co-labhairt-shoillse/