Logotip de la revista Noves SL





Contents Noves SL Winter 2009 issue

The issue of Noves SL which we present to you focuses on languages in education, and the knowledge, uses, representations and corpus of languages among pupils. The linguistic policies of most of the territories where Catalan is spoken have maintained education policy as one their fundamental pillars. This importance of languages in education has resulted in a general interest in the related legislation, its application and its effects both from the autonomous community governments who see their linguistic standardisation policies depending on them and from agents who see a danger to the current status of the languages in contact. In some territories where Catalan is spoken, education policies and their effects on languages have headed the media and social agenda. And, particularly in Catalonia, over the last few months this issue has been a central one.

But it is not only the media and education policy which have focused interest on this issue. Sociolinguistic research in the country has concentrated the interest of various studies looking in depth at the multilateral relations between language, school and society. In this issue, we present research articles carried out over the last few years in the context of this field of study.

Natxo Sorolla presents Home, school and playground: linguistic usages when lessons are over a summary and analysis of the Socio-demographic and linguistic study at secondary schools in Catalonia. The text is the result of a descriptive analysis of the survey promoted by the Education System Higher Assessment Council, administered to secondary school pupils from all over Catalonia. And it is accompanied by an analysis of family language usages and the presence of languages at the school in order to discover the most important language choice factors in interactions with friends.

Mireia Galindo and F. Xavier Vila i Moreno present Factors explaining informal linguistic usage among Catalan schoolchildren: initial language, social networks, competence and vehicular teaching language, analysing declared, experimental and observed data concerning linguistic knowledge and behaviour of pupils in the sixth year of primary school in Catalonia, in order to discover the most important factors in the configuration of inter-personal linguistic practices among these pupils.

Ricard Benito i Pérez, and Isaac Gonzàlez i Balletbó, present Intensity and characterisation of segregation in language terms in Catalan schools. The text deals with the distribution of pupils among schools depending on their family language, with surveys administered to families of 3rd-year primary schools in different Catalan municipalities. The researchers focus their interest on the relationship between linguistic segregation and residential segregation, the choice of school, whether it is public school or a private one forming part of the public system, the size of the municipality and the parents' level of education. All these factors together come within a school context with a principal objective being to teach all the pupils in one language.

Under the title: From monolingual family practices to bilingual identification: the case of pre-teenagers from Mataró and the Franja, Vanessa Bretxa, Llorenç Comajoan and Natxo Sorolla present the first results of research among pupils in their last year at primary school. They investigate the way in which different socio-linguistic variables are involved in the creation of two linguistic subgroups among pupils with monolingual Spanish family practices: one group which identifies with the family language; and another that has a bilingual identification.

Finally, Katharina Wieland presents the study Young people's language in Barcelona and its representation in the communications media. The expansion of the social presence of the communications media has led to a specialisation of programming depending on the age groups it is aimed at. The author studies the way different teenagers in the Barcelona area speak and compares this with the language used in television programmes aimed at this audience.