Southern African Linguistics and Applied Language Studies

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Stepping beyond linguistic boundaries in multilingual Science education: Lecturer’s perceptions of the use of translanguaging

Vimbai Mbirimi-Hungwe


The aim of the study is to investigate the views and perceptions of lecturers from the science disciplines – maths, statistics, physics and computer science – on the use of translanguaging for pedagogical purposes. Perceptions from these lecturers would assist to find ways of convincing them to accept and use translanguaging in their teaching for the benefit of the students. Using an open-ended questionnaire, responses from lecturers were solicited and recurring themes were used to analyse the data. Results show that science lecturers at the university recognise the value of translanguaging and they use it for teaching; however, some still uphold the high status of English given that it is the only language used for teaching and learning as well as assessment at this university. I have argued elsewhere, and I still argue, that the use of translanguaging should not be relegated to language lectures, rather all members of the faculty should be sensitised to this matter and they need to participate in using translanguaging for the benefit of students.

AJOL African Journals Online