Why cross-lingual mediation?
Mediation, as part of a person’s plurilingual competence, is an aspect in teacher education which is often given insufficient attention. Mediation was included as a notion when the CEFR was first published in 2001. However, it was not complemented with can-do statements as was the case with other skills – reading and listening, writing and speaking. For this reason, in 2018, the CEFR Companion Volume with new mediation descriptors becomes useful by proposing new descriptors related to the parallel use of languages and language users’ ability to act as interlingual mediators. The incorporation of mediation activities in the classroom is thus an important step.
Who is the guide for?
This guide is mainly for foreign language teachers. Adopting multilingual approaches to language teaching and assessment, this guide suggests techniques and activities for teachers which facilitate the use of different resources that pupils may bring in the classroom. FL teachers will gain awareness as to how to design materials aiming at developing and assessing learners’ mediation strategies, and will be able to:
- distinguish between mediation and translation, will be able to distinguish between cross-linguistic and intralinguistic mediation
- be able to explain what a mediation activity/task is and what the language users of different levels are expected to do
- distinguish between different types of mediation tasks
- identify linguistic and mediatory requirements of a mediation task
- prepare different types of written or oral mediation tasks
- select appropriate texts to be used in mediation tasks on the basis of certain criteria for each proficiency level
- create and use assessment criteria effectively to assess written mediation production