In search of an adequate educational policy for foreign language teaching in Slovakia
[A la recherche d’une politique educative adequate pour l’enseignement des langues en Slovaquie ?]
This contribution addresses the issue of foreign language teaching as a component of the Slovak educational policy. A good command of several languages is indeed crucial for the internationalization of education as well as for keeping countries competitive on a European or global scale. While many countries are implementing strategies focused on education, we are somewhat disappointed by recent developments that we have observed in Slovakia regarding how foreign languages are taught and learned. To better grasp that situation, we need to examine both the criteria that motivate learners to choose one or more foreign languages and which languages are offered by the Slovak education system. For that purpose, we have developed a quantitative survey as a pre-research step before embarking upon more extensive research. We need to analyze several theoretical notions that are essential for understanding our objective, particularly soft power, education policy and social representations of foreign languages. Our ambition is to avoid relying on pedagogical considerations that underpin most approaches in this field. Rather, we intend to focus on the political, historical, and sociolinguistic aspects of foreign language education.
Key words: educational policy, foreign language teaching, soft power, social representations of languages
Pages: 66 - 81