Advancing the European Multilingual Experience (ATHEME)
Advancing the European Multilingual Experience
Start date: Mar 1, 2014,
End date: Feb 28, 2019
"The project Advancing The European Multilingual Experience (AThEME) takes an integrated approach towards the study of multilingualism in Europe by incorporating and combining linguistic, cognitive and sociological perspectives; by studying multilingualism in Europe at three different levels of societal magnitude, viz. the individual multilingual citizen, the multilingual group, and the multilingual society; by using a palate of research methodologies, ranging from fieldwork methods to various experimental techniques and advanced EEG/ERP technologies.This integrated approach towards the study of multilingualism is grounded in the idea that multilingualism in Europe has many facets. AThEME will cover the different forms of multilingualism in Europe by developing new lines of inquiry on regional/minority languages, heritage languages, languages spoken by bi-/multi-lingual speakers with communicative disorders, and languages spoken by bi-/multi-linguals at different stages of development and life. These lines of inquiry will provide (partial) answers to fundamental questions, including: What does it mean to be bilingual? How and why do people succeed or fail in learning another language? How can we help speakers maintain their regional/heritage language and reach proficient multilingualism? What are the reciprocal effects of multilingualism and cognition? Are there cognitive benefits of multilingualism for senior citizens? How does multilingualism ""interact with"" communicative disorders? Which societal factors have a major impact on successful maintenance of regional/heritage languages?Answers to these questions provided within the context of AThEME will provide a firm basis for assessing existing public policies and practices within major areas such as education and health and contribute to evidence-based policy-making. AThEME aims to raise societal awareness of multilingualism through building on the successful model of academic public engagement provided by the program Bilingualism Matters."
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