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Shifting sands in English-medium instruction

The Centre for Applied Language Studies is delighted to host the following webinar (postponed from March):


Shifting sands in English-medium instruction: Understanding a truly global and constantly evolving sociolinguistic phenomenon


Dr Clive W. Earls



Wednesday, 4 May, 16.00, on MS Teams (Click here to join the meeting)



Abstract: English-medium of instruction (EMI) has become a truly global phenomenon. Having begun in the 1980s in the Netherlands and Scandinavia, it has now spread across national contexts in Europe, Asia and Africa with astonishing speed, creating diverse sociolinguistic and educational challenges and benefits. EMI, the dominant term describing the phenomenon, is understood at its most fundamental level as the use of English to teach non-linguistic academic subjects in countries where English is not the L1 or L2 of the majority of the population. There has, however, in recent years been much debate surrounding the term EMI and its appropriateness. This paper begins with a brief overview of EMI as a global phenomenon, including its historical genesis, and the ways in which it has been interpreted in varied national contexts. The main focus of the paper then moves to a critical analysis of current terminological debates, based on the swelling empirical data from varied national contexts globally.


Bio: Dr Clive W. Earls is Associate Professor of German Applied Linguistics and Programme Director for MA and PhD programmes in Applied Linguistics & Intercultural Studies at Maynooth University, National University of Ireland. He completed his BA and PhD in Applied Languages at the University of Limerick in 2006 and 2013, respectively. He has published widely in the areas of language policy and planning, particularly language-in-education policy for English-medium instruction in Germany and foreign languages in Ireland, Intercultural Studies and Language Pedagogy. He is currently on a research sabbatical in Germany and affiliated with Universität Hamburg as Visiting Professor.




For any queries, please feel free to contact me.


best wishes




Dr Jean E Conacher

Senior Lecturer in German

Course Director, BA in Applied Languages (LM044)

Scoil na Nua-Theangacha agus na Teangeolaíochta Feidhmí/School of Modern Languages and Applied Linguistics

Ollscoil Luimnigh/University of Limerick

IRL – Luimneach | IRL – Limerick


Tel: +353-61-234218



Conacher, J.E. (2020) Transformation and Education in the Literature of the GDR. Rochester, NY: Camden House.