ECML programme 2020-23 “Inspiring innovation in language education”: join the livestream of the pre-Call event on 12 December 2018, 9.00-10.30
Join the ECML livestream on 12 December 09.00-10.30 to find out how you can get involved in the next ECML programme 2020-23, “Inspiring innovation in language education: changing contexts, evolving competences”.
The direct link is: www.ecml.at/livestream.
This short livestream will offer language professionals an insight into the European Centre for Modern Languages and the benefits of participating in its next programme of activities.
The Call for the new programme is due to be launched in January 2019 – with the successful projects to start the following year. This pre-Call event is the first opportunity to find out about into its themes. The resulting programme will be based on key priorities in language education as identified by the ECML’s 33 member states (compiled through an online survey of stakeholders).
The livestream will feature members of the Professional Network Forum (a network of international associations/organisations focusing on language education and assessment), current and former project coordinators, ECML consultants and members of the ECML Governing Board representing national authorities, each offering their perspective on current challenges in language education and how the ECML can address these through its next programme. The event, which is in English and French, will also provide an introduction into the Call for projects and outline the different possibilities for participating.
A chat will also be available to give viewers the opportunity to ask questions.
Please pass this information on to colleagues and networks who may be interested in this event.
That was … the 2018 European Day of Languages
With around 1,300 EDL events registered in the online calendar this year, there was no shortage of creative ideas for celebrating the Day - with seminars on multilingualism, polyglot gatherings, language cafés, a European week of Languages, neighbouring languages festivals, a journey through languages and cultures and, of course, speak dating – to make some new friends!
With 2018 marking the European Year of Cultural Heritage, there were close links between the two initiatives and many of the events organised for the Day focused both on raising awareness of the wide variety of languages in Europe and on promoting cultural heritage and linguistic diversity - thereby encouraging people of all ages to learn languages.
This year’s EDL initiative ‘How multilingual is your classroom/organisation?’ to discover Europe’s most multilingual classrooms and workplaces encouraged schools, offices, associations and organisations to showcase their language skills. Many photos, song records, videos, posters, poems in different languages were all sent in as evidence of language rich classrooms. A selection of just some of the entries has been compiled in a short video highlighting multilingual Europe in practice. All entrants to the initiative will shortly receive a certificate of participation.
The activity voted the most innovative EDL event this year was entitled “Doorway to the world”. The e-Twinning event coordinated by the Polish school “Szkoła Podstawowa nr 1 w Żarach” sought to bring schools together from all over Europe to celebrate the Day in an international way. The title proved very apt as the Day was celebrated in more countries than ever (51) all over the world, not only in Europe but also for the first time in countries such as India, Jordan, Uruguay and Cuba!
A competition to design a t-shirt for the 2019 European Day of Languages is still underway and will close on 31 December 2018.
In his statement on the occasion of the Day, the Secretary General of the Council of Europe, Thorbjørn Jagland, highlighted the importance of openness, “Understanding each other is the key to benefitting from Europe’s rich cultural diversity. Language education helps us to do this and to embrace other cultures and ways of life.” The Day received widespread press coverage in many countries, with articles about EDL featuring heavily in the media, such as El País, The Irish Times, ANSA.it, NTV and Euronews among many others.
The events taking place in celebration of the 2018 Day were organised mainly by schools, universities, language and cultural institutes, associations and also by the European Commission’s translation field offices which co-organised around 70 activities.
On a local level, the language festival in Graz coordinated by the Graz Language Network and taking place in the City museum, welcomed around 2,000 participants to a day of fun and, of course, educational activities, involving language challenges, singing, dancing, language taster courses, poetry slams and a wide variatey of games and competitions.
We would like to thank everyone who organised and/or participated in activities related to this year’s European Day of Languages. We have already received lots of ideas and suggestions for 2019 and are already looking forward to it!
Annual meeting of the ECML Governing Board
The Governing Board of the European Centre for Modern Languages met at ECML premises in Graz on 9-10 October. Turnout at the annual meeting was a record high with 40 participants representing 28 of the 33 States party to this Partial Agreement. In addition to reviewing the ongoing ECML programme, the Governing Board finalised the Call for projects for the upcoming 2020-2023 programme, considered the future orientation and organisation of language policy and practice in the Council of Europe Education programme, and took stock of the ECML cooperation programme with the European Commission. The Governing Board re-elected Ms Ursula Newby (Austria) as its Chair and partly renewed its Bureau.
Try out the Quality Assurance Matrix for CEFR Use (QualiMatrix)
Try out the beta version of the Quality Assurance Matrix for CEFR Use (QualiMatrix), a tool designed for evaluating CEFR-related courses, programmes and teaching and assessment practices.
The ECML project team would love to hear your feedback!
Full news item
Watch the e-lang webinar “Towards digital literacy for language teaching and learning” livestreamed on 12 October 2018
The e-lang webinar focuses on real-world tasks, digital resources and autonomy and enables language teachers, teacher trainers, and school inspectors for Modern Foreign Languages to get familiar with the ECML project.
Webinar recording and presentation available on the project website (in English and in French): https://www.ecml.at/e-lang
See also 'New ECML resources' below.
ECML project “Action research communities for language teachers”: action research as a means of transforming practice into a shared emancipatory space
At the beginning of September, Christine Lechner and Marianne Jacquin had the opportunity to present the ARC project as the opening keynote at the first international Conference held by the Association en didactique des langues étrangères en Suisse (ADLES) in Lausanne, Switzerland. This was an opportunity to demonstrate to a large audience how action research can contribute to the enhancement of language teaching, to show how action research functions in practice both at university and school level, and to give insights into the work of the ARC project.
Full news item and link to the video
ECML workshop “Language for Work – Tools for professional development” (Graz, Austria, 23-24 October 2018): fine-tuning the products of the project
The project’s final workshop brought together 46 experts from 31 countries, all of whom work in the field of the linguistic integration of adult migrants and their work-related L2 development. The event enabled participants to review the products developed throughout the project, to discuss how to make them as useful as possible and how to organise the resource bank of tools for professional development, to exchange practical applications and strategies for managers and staff in job centres and public administration to improve communication with the public.
Project website available in English and French: https://languageforwork.ecml.at/
Project workshop “A roadmap for schools to support the language(s) of schooling” (Graz, Austria, 15-16 November 2018): roadmap, promises practices database and Guide to be finalised for 2019
The workshop gathered 28 experts coming from 31 countries who worked closely with the project team in order to finalise the project outputs.
The project is developing a “roadmap” which is a digital tool that supports the schools in their reflection on the language(s) of schooling and in the implementation of a strategy they themselves have determined. To achieve this, a self-assessment tool will enable each stakeholder - head teacher, teachers, non-teaching staff, students and parents - to start reflecting upon the situation in their school, by assessing different thematic areas.
Project website available in English, French and German: www.ecml.at/roadmapforschools
ECML project “Towards a Common European Framework of Reference for language teachers”: workshop results (Graz, Austria, 3-4 October 2018)
Thirty-nine participants from 33 European countries gave feedback on the draft online Guide to instruments and frameworks describing teacher competences for language education and on a draft Overview of the language-related competences of different kinds of teachers. The Overview contains competence descriptions in the areas of pedagogy, language competences, guiding principles of language education, but also for dimensions such as cooperation with other stakeholders, and teachers’ career-long learning. The participants’ active contributions will enable the project team to provide a qualified opinion on the need for a future framework before the end of the project in 2019.
Full news item
Project website available in English and French: www.ecml.at/teachercompetences
Networking on Language in subjects (Graz, 18-19 October 2018)
The 5 team members worked together with 11 non-linguistic subject teachers, coming from Armenia, Austria, Finland, France, Iceland, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and Switzerland, who represented various school subjects, such as history, biology, geography, mathematics, chemistry, physical education, and social sciences. The participants gave feedback on the first versions of the tools that the team had developed for subject teachers. With the help of the tools, subject teachers should become more aware of the language component in their subject to be able to scaffold those students who struggle with the subject-specific language.
ECML project “Pro-Sign2 - Promoting excellence in sign language instruction”: presented during two major events in Serbia and Brazil
The Pro-Sign2/efsli Conference in Belgrade was a tremendous success with some 150 people from 39 countries who shared evidence-based practice around teaching, learning and assessing sign languages. Key themes were the European Language Portfolio, assessment, sign language pedagogy and technology, plans to develop a generic sign language teacher training curriculum, and sign language teacher competencies. The presentations proved innovative, inspiring and challenging, both for established programmes and experienced teachers as well as for new comers in the field.
The University of Belgrade plans to include Serbian Sign Language in their programme. This is an important step with the goal to enhance awareness of Serbian SL and human rights of sign language users in the Balkan region.
Full news item
On 1st October 2018 Christian Rathmann, coordinator of the Pro-Sign2 project, also delivered a “workshop on the Common European Framework of Reference for Sign Language Teaching: Learning, Teaching and Assessment” as a part of the TILP conference in Florianopolis, Brazil.
ECML project website available in English, French and sign language: www.ecml.at/Pro-Sign2
Training and consultancy activities
A series of 19 national workshops to take place in 2019 through the RELANG and Supporting Multilingual Classrooms initiatives
Local coordinators from 16 countries (Albania, Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Denmark, Estonia, Greece, Iceland, Ireland, Lithuania, Malta, Norway, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia and Spain) met with project teams at the ECML on 30-31 October to advance preparations for national workshops to be hosted on the themes of Relating language curricula, tests and examinations to the Common European Framework of Reference (RELANG) and Supporting Multilingual Classrooms. The series of events targeting practitioners, multipliers and administrators at national level will take place between January and August 2019. (See ECML calendar of events)
The RELANG and Supporting Multilingual Classrooms initiatives, providing training to Member States of the European Union and the European Centre for Modern Languages, are organised through a joint cooperation action with the European Commission - first launched in 2013 (www.ecml.at/ec-cooperation). The action which is based on two key language education concerns within the targeted states will offer training and consultancy over the next year to around 500 language professionals within national systems.
Training events on “Plurilingual and intercultural competences: Descriptors and teaching materials (FREPA)” in Armenia, Germany, Greece and Norway
Training event in Armenia
(Yerevan, 25-26 October 2018)
Full news item
Training workshops in Norway
(Bergen, 27-28 September 2018)
Full news item
Training event in Greece
(Corfu, 6-7 September 2018)
Full news item
Conference for multipliers on the promotion of plurilingualism in schools in Hamburg, Germany
(16 June 2018)
Full news item
Training events on the “Use of ICT in support of language learning and teaching - ICT-REV” in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Poland and Slovenia
ECML training event in Bosnia and Herzogovina
(Sarajevo, 2-3 November 2018)
Full news item
ECML training event in Slovenia
(Kranj, 25-26 May 2018)
Full news item
Training event on “CLIL – A pluriliteracies approach to teaching for learning” in Montenegro
ECML training event (Podgorica, 4-5 October 2018)
Full news item
Towards a socio-interactional approach to foster autonomy in language learners and users
The book explores a possible evolution of the action-oriented approach and the tasks associated to it as presented in the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR). It introduces a socio-interactional approach to language teaching and learning and a new type of task to be implemented on the Web 2.0: real-world tasks.
This book has been produced as part of the e-lang project “Digital literacy for the teaching and learning of languages” (project of the European Centre for Modern Languages within its “Languages at the heart of learning” programme 2016-2019). It is intended for language teachers and future language teachers, as well as researchers interested in this topic who wish to explore the pedagogical principles of the e-lang project.
Download the publication: English - French
ECML related publication
Materials development for online language courses
NFLRC professional development series on Online Learning Pedagogy: “Materials development for online language courses”.
This lesson on the use of technology for language teaching focuses on how to adapt available online language instructional materials when they are print-based and do not leverage technology in any way. Ursula Stickler also presents the ECML inventory of ICT tools and open educational resources.
Professional Network Forum of the ECML
Forthcoming events - News from partners
The Professional Network Forum of the ECML is comprised of international associations and institutions that share common values and have overlapping expertise in the field of language education and assessment. Under the auspices of the ECML, the members of the Forum share their know-how and work together on areas of common interest in the service of language education.
Members of the Forum: ACTFL, AILA, ALTE, CEL/ELC, CercleS, EALTA, EAQUALS, ECSPM, ECML/Council of Europe, EDiLiC, EFNIL, EPA, EUNIC, FIPLV, ICC, OLBI.
OLBI celebrates its 50th Anniversary
On 1st November the Official Languages and Bilingualism Institute (OLBI/University of Ottawa) has celebrated its historic milestone with the university community. Happy Anniversary to the National Contact Point for the ECML in Canada!
Language education in the Finnish National Core Curriculum
Finland invests in early language learning
The current Finnish Government Programme entails 26 key projects, of which one is “New learning environments and digital materials to comprehensive schools”. The project’s objectives include, for example, modernising Finnish education in terms of pedagogy and the learning environment, improving learning results, and providing pupils with skills that respond to future needs.
The project divides into three themes. One of these is the government key project for languages, which aims to increase and diversify language teaching by way of regional experiments. The three main points of focus here are: integrating early language learning into Finnish education with a much wider scope than before, providing pupils with a wider language repertoire, and creating a welcoming and encouraging attitude towards foreign language learning.
International mobility in upper secondary education is declining
In 2017 Finnish students in upper secondary education completed fewer mobility periods than the previous year. Target countries in both VET and general upper secondary education were mainly in Europe. The EU Erasmus+ Programme is becoming more and more important as a source of funding for student mobility.
Just published : Courriel européen des langues no. 41
The current issue of Courriel européen des langues contains lead articles from two ECML project coordinators and a French project team:
The Courriel européen des langues is edited in French by the International Centre for Pedagogical Studies (CIEP), the National Contact Point for the ECML in France.
CIEP thematic monitoring on language policies, language teaching and teaching French
Since 1st October, you can subscribe to the themes of your choice to receive by mail a selection of recent French and international publications made by CIEP on
Latest CIEP newsletters
Norway: NAFOs projects on multilingual web resources
The Norwegian National Centre for Multicultural Education (NAFO) has three main projects related to multilingual web resources:
New National Contact Points for the ECML in Canada, Estonia and Ireland
The ECML is pleased to welcome the following new national contact points:
The ECML would like to express its deepest gratitude to Mr Tonu Tender (Estonia), Ms Emma Grainger (Ireland) and Ms Marie-Josée Hamel for their support and involvement during the last years.
Council of Europe developments
Danish Chairmanship supports education for democracy and human rights
On 15 November the Chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe passed from the Czech Republic to Denmark.
The outgoing Chair, Lubomír Zaorálek, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic, summarised his country’s achievements during its chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers. The priorities focused on protecting the human rights of persons belonging to vulnerable or disadvantaged groups and promoting gender equality, strengthening the rule of law, supporting local and regional democracy and public administration reforms, promoting human rights education and linguistic skills and co-operation and co-ordination with other international organisations. With special regard to the European Centre for Modern Languages of the Council of Europe (ECML) the Czech Chairmanship continued to actively support the cooperation carried out in the framework of the ECML’s four-year programme 2016-2019 throughout its 6-month term. A working seminar involving foreign experts was organised in Prague in October for the Czech language test-makers who examine the language proficiency of foreigners applying for a permanent residence permit or citizenship.
The new Chair of the Committee of Ministers, Anders Samuelsen, Minister of Foreign affairs of Denmark, presented the priorities of the Danish Chairmanship which will run for six months as of 15 November 2018. The priorities are the preservation of the European human rights system in a future Europe, gender equality, involvement of children and young people in democracy, the fight against discrimination of persons with disabilities and combating torture.
Full Council of Europe news item
New Council of Europe campaign “FREE TO SPEAK - SAFE TO LEARN - Democratic schools for All” (2018-2022)
The Council of Europe launched its new campaign “FREE TO SPEAK-SAFE TO LEARN - Democratic schools for All” from 14-16 November 2018 in Oslo. The conference was a joint event with the European Wergeland Centre (EWC), the main partner in the campaign. EWC celebrated its 10th Anniversary. The event was opened by Erna Solberg, Prime Minister of Norway, and Thorbjørn Jagland, Secretary General of the Council of Europe. Participants included students, educators, representatives of public authorities and experts from all over Europe.
The campaign addresses the following themes: making children's and students’ voices heard; addressing controversial issues; preventing violence and bullying;
dealing with propaganda, misinformation and fake news;
tackling discrimination; improving well-being at school.
The campaign will be run until 2022, at national, regional and European level. It involves 50 states across Europe, the Council of Europe’s 47 member states as well as Belarus, the Holy See and Kazakhstan, as additional parties to the Organisation’s European Cultural Convention.
Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities: Bosnia and Herzegovina, Latvia, Portugal, Slovenia
Advisory Committee on the
Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities: Eleventh activity report covering the period from 1 June 2016 to 31 May 2018
Bosnia and Herzegovina: publication of the 4th Advisory Committee Opinion
Latvia: publication of the 3rd Advisory Committee Opinion
Portugal: receipt of the 4th cycle State Report
Slovenia: Resolution CM/ResCMN(2018)12 on the implementation of the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities
European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages: Finland
Finland: minority language awareness in education and media needs to be improved
All news about the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages
Call for official recognition of sign languages
PACE has called for the official recognition of sign languages so that deaf persons can “exercise their fundamental rights”. Adopting a resolution based on a report by Miren Edurne Gorrotxategui (Spain, UEL), the Assembly’s Standing Committee said such recognition would also “contribute to further promoting the richness of deaf culture and send a powerful message of inclusion to the deaf community”.
International Day of Romani Language celebrated on 5 November
The Council of Europe Secretary General made a
statement for this occasion, calling on member states to step up efforts to recognise, protect, promote, and develop the Romani language in Europe.
The World day of Romani language promotes education, language and culture of Roma people and supports multicultural values. It was first initiated by the Croatian Parliament in 2012 and proclaimed World Day of Romani language by UNESCO during its 38th session of the General Conference of UNESCO in 2015.
Border regions facing the migration phenomenon
According to a recent report by the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, migration remains a critical issue for all levels of governance in Council of Europe member states. It was against this background that the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities held a debate on “Border regions facing the migration phenomenon” on 6 November 2018.
The report adopted by the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities builds on previous Congress texts concerning the reception of refugees and integration of migrants to examine the potential benefits of cross-border co-operation among regions situated on the periphery of Europe or at the borders of countries within Europe. It argues for an “integrated approach”, adequately involving different levels of government, NGOs and partners in countries of origin and transit and underlines that all these stakeholders’ involvement and interconnectedness is crucial for developing effective integration policies.
Recent Council of Europe publications
2018 Report on the state of democracy, human rights and the rule of law in Europe: Role of institutions - Threats to institutions
The annual report of the Secretary General of the Council of Europe looks at the key building blocks of democratic security: efficient, impartial and independent judiciaries; freedom of expression; freedom of assembly and freedom of association; democratic institutions; and inclusive societies. Free copies of the report, available in English and French, can be requested via firstname.lastname@example.org.
Download the report
Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities – Collected texts (8th edition): publication page
PDF - Education Pack “All different - All equal” - Ideas, resources, methods and activities for non-formal intercultural education with young people and adults (3rd edition): English version (2016) - Now available in French (2018)
Perspectives on youth - Volume 4 - Young people in a digitalised world: publication page
European Parliament Resolution of 13 November 2018 on minimum standards for minorities in the EU
Guild of European Research-Intensive Universities - The Guild's recommendations for the new Erasmus programme
Global education monitoring report, 2019: Migration, displacement and education: building bridges, not walls
Working together for local integration of migrants and refugees in Berlin
Working together for local integration of migrants and refugees - Case studies: Altena, Germany; Amsterdam, Netherlands; Athens, Greece; Barcelona, Spain; Berlin, Germany; Göteborg, Sweden; Vienna, Austria
International migration outlook 2018
Education policy outlook 2018 - Putting student learning at the centre
Educational opportunity for all overcoming inequality throughout the life course
International Organization of La Francophonie
OIF/New York: Multilingualism at the heart of the work of the United Nations General Assembly
The Fourth Committee of the United Nations General Assembly held its general debate on information issues on 18, 19 and 22 October 2018. Multilingualism was at the heart of the exchanges and declarations of States, which unanimously stressed the importance of promoting and integrating multilingualism into the daily work of the United Nations Department of Public Information.
Full article (available in French)
Review of the 2018 Semaine de la langue française et de la Francophonie
From 17 to 25 March 2018, more than a thousand events took place in France and abroad. Flashback on this 23rd edition, which invited everyone to reflect on the various language usages.
Mercator - European Research Centre on Multilingualism and Language Learning
Issue no. 144 (September/October)
Issue no. 145 (October/November)
Issue no. 146 (November/December)
Council of Europe
Council of Europe news
Council of Europe Education Department
European Day of Languages
European Centre for Modern Languages (ECML)
European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages
Stay connected with the ECML
News on the ECML portal
ECML on Facebook
ECML on Twitter
ECML activities 2018-2019
All issues of the European Language Gazette
Not interested anymore? Click here to unsubscribe.
European Centre for Modern Languages of the Council of Europe
Promoting excellence in language education
Centre européen pour les langues vivantes du Conseil de l´Europe
Pour l’excellence dans l’éducation aux langues
Austria / Autriche
T +43 316 323554
F +43 316 323554-4
Follow us on Facebook Twitter