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ECML Resources


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Plurilingual and intercultural learning through mobility. Practical resources for teachers and teacher trainers

PluriMobil is a teaching tool that offers activities and materials to support the plurilingual and intercultural learning of students for the phases before, during and after a mobility activity. This tool can be adapted to multiple mobility projects across all educational levels.

Available in English and French

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Towards whole-school language curricula. Examples of practice in schools

The resources provide tools which help to clarify, develop and implement plurilingual, intercultural and inclusive whole-school policies in different contexts in ECML member states.

Available in English and German

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Plurilingual and intercultural competences. Descriptors and teaching materials

FREPA National Networks disseminate the tools developed within the Framework of Reference for Pluralistic Approaches to Languages and Cultures (FREPA/CARAP) to support plurilingual and intercultural education at all levels.

Available in EN, FR and DE

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Collaborative Community Approach to Migrant Education. A virtual open course for educators

The resources offer innovative ways to enhance young migrants’ education by developing links between schools, the home and local partners in education. This educational joint venture develops the learners’ skills in the language of schooling as well as their plurilingual competences.

Available in EN et FR

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CONBAT – Plurilingualism and pluriculturalism in content-based teaching: A training kit

Educational institutions increasingly face the challenge of accommodating learners from a wide range of linguistic and cultural backgrounds in their classrooms. The training kit presents an innovative way of managing diversity in the classroom by combining plurilingual and pluricultural approaches with content-based instruction. The reader will discover how content-based and plurilingual activities can be linked to several subjects of the curriculum.

Available in English and French.

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European Language Portfolio (ELP)

An evaluation tool used to track progress while learning languages. Portfolios can be found on the ECML’s dedicated European Language Portfolio website. Full copies of some of the portfolios are available to download.

Available in English and French.

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Training teachers to use the European Language Portfolio (ELP-TT)

The website contains a wide range of information on how to use the European Language Portfolio. ELP experts involved in ECML activities collected practical materials such as videos, PowerPoint presentations, posters, worksheets as well as links, references and FAQs. The aim is to promote the pedagogical benefits of the ELP and to facilitate its use in practice. The site also brings together the results of several major European ELP implementation projects on one single platform.

Available in English and French.

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EPOSTL – European Portfolio for Student Teachers of Languages - A reflection tool for language teacher education

The European Portfolio for Student Teachers of Languages (EPOSTL) is a document intended for students undergoing their initial teacher education which encourages them to reflect on the didactic knowledge and skills necessary to teach languages, helps them to assess their own didactic competences and enables them to monitor their progress and to record their experiences of teaching during the course of their teacher education.

Available in 14 languages.

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ICCinTE – Intercultural Communication Training in Teacher Education

Many language teachers, teacher educators and second language acquisition researchers have expressed the conviction that the primary aim of foreign language teaching is to enable learners to communicate with people from different linguistic and cultural backgrounds in an increasingly multicultural world. The aim of this publication is to assist teacher educators and language teachers in shifting the focus from linguistic competence to intercultural communicative competence.

Available in English and French.

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LEA ‒ Plurilingual and pluricultural awareness in language teacher education: A training kit

The LEA (Language Educator Awareness) training kit comprises a set of practical instruments designed to help teacher educators introduce the essential aspects of plurilingualism and pluriculturalism to language teachers and learners. It consists of a printed booklet setting out the rationale for a series of training activities, which are contained on an accompanying CD-Rom.

Available in English and French.

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CARAP/FREPA – A Framework of Reference for Pluralistic Approaches

The term pluralistic approaches to languages and cultures refers to didactic approaches which involve the use of several (or at least more than one) variety of languages or cultures simultaneously during the teaching process. By abandoning the "compartmentalised" view of an individual’s linguistic and cultural competence(s), this publication is a valuable step towards implementing the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages, in particular its rationale on plurilingual and intercultural competence.

Available in English, French and Italian.

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Go to the project page 

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ICOPROMO – Intercultural competence for professional mobility

This publication reflects the outcomes of a project which brought together experts and practitioners in the field of intercultural competence for professional mobility and which focused on group-oriented (teamwork) intercultural communication and interaction competencies. The materials developed are primarily targeted at educators and facilitators working with graduates in the social sciences, human resource managers, intercultural trainers,coaches and mediators and foreign language teachers in higher education with a strong focus on intercultural awareness.

Available in English and French.

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CHAGAL Setup – European curriculum guidelines for access programmes into higher education for under-represented adult learners

The idea for the CHAGAL project was born out of the realisation that education systems have to be responsive to the diverse backgrounds and specific needs of international students and to adopt effective strategies to offer students every chance of success in their undertakings. An innovative and inclusive curriculum sensitive to the students’ diversity not only promotes positive student reaction and success, but also reflects the host country’s acceptance of the potential these students have to offer.

Available in English.

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Mirrors and Windows: An intercultural communication textbook

Intercultural experiences pose inevitable challenges to one´s personal identity and communication skills. One has to learn how to deal with unexpectedness, ambiguity and otherness as well as the resulting culture bumps or culture shock. The knowledge, skills and attitudes that are necessary for successful intercultural communication have to be observed, discussed and practiced. This textbook wishes to help the trainer, the teacher and the learner in this process by encouraging culture-general discussions about culture with a small "c" and by using a reflective approach.

Available in English, French and German.

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Neighbouring language teaching in border regions

Europe is rapidly developing, particularly in its border regions. It is precisely in these areas that the need for knowledge of neighbouring languages is both at its strongest and most varied. Approaches adapted to their specific situation are required in order for these regions to quickly become real-life language learning laboratories and centres of innovation.

Available in English.

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ODYSSEUS – Second language at the workplace: Language needs of migrant workers: organising language learning for the vocational/workplace context

This book is constructed around a conviction by the authors of the key role of vocational and workplace-related second language provision towards social and economic integration and participation. Knowledge and communicative competences have become pivotal elements of vocational and professional performance at all hierarchical levels for all employees (mother-tongue speakers and speakers of other languages). This publication, which is the result of a cooperation project between the Council of Europe and the European Commission, is an invaluable resource for current and intending workplace language practitioners, as well as company personnel, unions and policy makers.

Available in English and French.

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Helping learners learn: Exploring strategy instruction in language classrooms around Europe

Helping learners learn; Exploring strategy instruction in language classrooms across Europe is the second joint publication of the European Centre for Modern Languages (ECML) in Graz, Austria, and the Modern Languages Division in Strasbourg, France, and as such reflects the synergy between each whereby the ECML activities support the implementation of policy developed through the projects of the Modern Languages Division in Strasbourg. The study, co-ordinated by Vee Harris, is the result of a research network established during the initial workshop in Graz in 1998 in co-operation with the Modern Languages Division of the Council of Europe and is indicative of the active emphasis placed on follow-up work by the ECML and the Modern Languages Division

Available in English and French.

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How strange! The use of anecdotes in the development of intercultural competence

Successful communication presupposes a good degree of social understanding and sharing of meaning and therefore participating in a community's life via another language necessitates not only an acceptable level of proficiency in that language, but also an extended behavioural code. What kind of cultural set-backs do language learners face when visiting the target country, or even in interacting with native speakers of a language? What can we learn from the experience of such learners? The aim of this project was to tap into the experiences of seasoned foreign language learners and travellers for the collection of a database of anecdotes that symbolise the kind of intercultural failure faced by newcomers to a target culture.

Available in English and French.

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Janua Linguarum – the gateway to languages. The introduction of language awareness into the curriculum: Awakening to languages

Discovering at school the diversity of languages and cultures, listening to dozens of languages, including some of the languages spoken by classmates, marveling at the way those languages are written, comparing them and understanding how they work, taking an interest in those who speak them. These are the types of activities that the awakening to languages offers pupils; to help them open up to what is different, and develop their ability to observe and learn languages. This approach is an integral part of efforts by the Council of Europe aimed at plurilinguism, promoting the diversity of languages in education systems and democratic citizenship.

Available in English and French.

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Language learning and teaching in the context of twin cities

The twinning of cities and municipalities possibly represents the largest platform for encounter and mutual acquaintance established in modern times. However, can such a merger between the fellow-citizens of Europe be achieved without first addressing in a determined way the issue of languages, of teaching languages and their diversity? Answers to this question can be found before, during and after visits to participating towns. School exchange programmes also deserve a better preparation and a genuine teaching methodology for exchanges.

Available in English and French.

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Literacy as correspondence – an integrated approach to multi-literacy

This collection of case studies offers the reader different but equally important perspectives to be considered in teaching second or subsequent literacies to relatively young learners. It is important to examine what and how teachers present learning material to the students. However, what learners make of the teaching context and how the formal situation prepares children to make use of their second/subsequent literacy achievement beyond the classroom context are crucial issues if language learning is indeed a requirement which fosters communication among different communities and cultures.

Available in English and French.

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Cultural mediation and language learning and teaching

This training project for learning about research through research brought together representatives from over twenty-five of the ECML member countries. Its results are contained in a publication and a set of recommendations addressed to policy makers, is the introduction of cultural mediation into the debate on language didactics. Whereas most innovations in language didactics appear in the form of new teaching tools, the Cultural mediation in language learning and teaching project chose to follow a new path by adopting a "learning by doing" approach to research.

Available in English and French.

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Information and Communication Technologies and young language learners

This publication describes a project, which aimed at integrating web-based communication with a thematic story approach to teaching a foreign language to 8 to 10 year-olds. The aim was to encourage the use of the World Wide Web as a medium over which children could publish their language productions to an audience of peers from participating schools in 21 European countries.

Available in English and French.

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Challenges and opportunities in language education: the contributions of the European Centre for Modern Languages - 2000-2003

This book is a reflective account of the work of the European Centre for Modern Languages, Graz during its first medium- term programme, which lasted from 2000 to 2003.

Available in English and French.

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Languages for social cohesion: Language education in a multilingual and multicultural Europe

The ECML’s “Languages for social cohesion” programme (2004-2007) involved approximately 4500 language professionals from Europe and beyond. This publication focuses on key developments in language education promoted through the work of the European Centre for Modern Languages of the Council of Europe (ECML).

Available in English and French.

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ALC – Across languages and cultures

Across languages and cultures – a major theoretical framework for plural approaches to learning languages and cultures – language learning in which more than one language (in addition to the learner’s first language) is involved. The Framework explains the conceptual justification for the approach, and includes descriptors of the knowledge, skills and attitudes required to implement didactic approaches to it – awakening to languages, inter-comprehension and integrated didactics.

Available in English, French, German and Hungarian.

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Approaches to materials design in European textbooks: Implementing principles of authenticity, learner autonomy and cultural awareness

The publication sets out to present some of the principal theoretical issues underlying the topics in question and how authors attempt to implement aspects of these theories in their own work.

Available in English and French.

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Incorporating intercultural communicative competence in language teacher education

The articles in this volume describe the results of the research and development carried out by four networks in Project 1.2.3 of the medium-term programme of activities of the European Centre for Modern Languages in Graz, Austria. The main aim of the whole project has been to help incorporate intercultural communication training into teacher education in Europe. The networks took on a variety of tasks to investigate how this aim could be best achieved. 

Available in English and French.

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Literacy and linguistic diversity in a global perspective : an intercultural exchange with African countries

This publication reflects the outcomes of a project which brought together experts and practitioners in the field of linguistic diversity and literacy from European and African countries with a view to opening a dialogue, to taking a comparative perspective and defining possible areas of mutually enriching co-operation and exchange.

Available in English and French.

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Introducing learner autonomy in teacher education

Introducing Learner Autonomy in Teacher Education is the first in a series of six studies by the ECML and was initiated during workshop No. 3/97 `Language and Cultural Awareness in Language Learning/Teaching for the development of Learner Autonomy´, which was held in Graz. An international network was set up and supported by the ECML. Its aim was to produce and test in-service and pre-service teacher-training modules and implement learner autonomy.

Available in English and French.

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The organisation of language education in small states

The experiences of small States in the area of the organization and set-up of language education may in certain respects differ substantially from the experiences of larger states. Considering the importance that is attributed, on a European scale, of linguistic and cultural diversity, to the promotion of education for plurilingualism in general, and to the promotion of diversification in language teaching, especially for lesser used languages, experiences of these countries are of particular interest. It has been demonstrated that through choice or necessity plurilingualism constitutes one of their major assets.

Available in English and French.

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Council of Europe policy documents

  • White Paper on Intercultural Dialogue – Living together as equals in dignity
  • Other Council of Europe Resources

    
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    Autobiography of International Encounters and Autobiography of International Encounters through Visual Media

    These autobiographies are tools which encourage users to document, reflect on and learn from their intercultural encounters. They can be used in both formal and informal learning.

    More information on these biographies, as well as copies of the autobiographies in other languages can be found on the Council of Europe’s dedicated Autobiography of International Encounters website.

    Available in English, French, Italian, Polish and Russian.

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    Common European Framework of Reference for Languages: Learning, Teaching, Assessment (CEFR)

    The result of over twenty years of research, the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages: Learning, teaching, assessment (CEFR) is exactly what its title says it is: a framework of reference. It was designed to provide a transparent, coherent and comprehensive basis for the elaboration of language syllabuses and curriculum guidelines, the design of teaching and learning materials, and the assessment of foreign language proficiency. It is used in Europe but also in other continents and is now available in 39 languages.

    Available in 39 languages.

    Go to the CEFR page

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    A platform of resources and references for plurilingual and intercultural education

    The Council of Europe's Language Policy Unit proposes a new instrument, in the form of this Platform, enabling member states to benefit from the experience and expertise of other member states in formulating their programmes relating to languages of schooling and all language teaching.

    Available in English and French.

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    Intercultural learning

    Intercultural learning and intercultural education owe a great deal to the work of the Council of Europe, especially the educational approaches and practices of the European youth centres in Strasbourg and Budapest. However, the understanding of intercultural learning, and the way in which it is practised by youth organisations and youth workers, has strongly changed and developed over time.

    Available in English and French.

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    European Commission Resources

    
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    Erasmus+

    The Erasmus+ programme aims to boost skills and employability, as well as modernising Education, Training, and Youth work.

    Available in 24 languages.

    Go to the Erasmus+ page

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    Youth on the Move

    Youth on the Move is a comprehensive package of policy initiatives on education and employment for young people in Europe. Launched in 2010, it is part of the Europe 2020 strategy for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth. Youth on the Move aims to improve young people’s education and employability, to reduce high youth unemployment and to increase the youth-employment rate – in line with the wider EU target of achieving a 75% employment rate for the working-age population (20-64 years).

    Available in English.

    Go to the project page

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    Youth Opportunities Initiative

    Youth Opportunities Initiative is a set of measures planned for 2012 and 2013, to drive down youth unemployment. It is part of the EU's Youth on the Move education and employment initiative. The goals are to support unemployed young people, aiming in particular to help: people who left school or training without having achieved upper-secondary education to return to school or enrol in vocational training for in-demand skills and for graduates to get a first work experience.

    Available in 24 languages.

    Go to the initiative page

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    Towards a Mobility Scoreboard: Conditions for Learning Abroad in Europe

    This feasibility report contains a set of draft proposals for 'scoreboard indicators' focusing on conditions supporting learner mobility in higher education. Following up on a 2011 Council Recommendation through which Member States committed to promoting and removing obstacles to learner mobility, it aims to set a framework for monitoring progress. The report covers topics ranging from information and guidance to language preparation, portability of financial support, recognition and support to disadvantaged learners.

    Available in English.

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    Learning Opportunities and Qualifications in Europe. Information about courses, work-based learning and qualifications

    The portal is aimed to guide learners through the various ways to obtain skills and qualifications all over Europe. Visitors may browse the portal by subject field, level of education or country.

    Available in 28 languages.

    Go to the portal page

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    Education and training. Supporting education and training in Europe and beyond

    European portal offering guidance and support for learners' and teachers' educational goals.

    Available in 24 languages.

    Go to the portal page

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    EuroDesk

    Eurodesk is an international nonprofit association created in 1990. As support organisation to the Erasmus+ programme (2014-2020) we are the most comprehensive and most accessible source of free youth information about learning mobility opportunities. Today 1.200 youth professionals with our support, streamline and disseminate in our name accurate and high-quality information to young people in Europe.

    Available in 36 languages.

    Go to the association page

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    External Resources

    
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    Culture Box Project

    Project: Culture box 

    Partners: Aneta Porczyk Fromowitz,  French Teacher, Polish-French Primary School "La Fontaine", Warsaw, Poland     
    Christine Hainaut, Ecole Primaire de Lancelot, Privas, France.

    "Culture Box" is an intercultural, interactive project between a bilingual Polish-French primary school (La Fontaine) in Warsaw and Lancelot Primary school in Privas, France. The project was inspired by the British Council and started in 2012. Fifty pupils aged 7 to 10, from various different cultural backgrounds have participated in this virtual mobility project to date.

    The "Culture Box" project was awarded the National Quality Label for an excellent eTwinning Project in 2013.

    Available in French.

    Go to the project page

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    Freizeit/Free Time Project

    ProjectFreizeit/Free Time
    Teacher: Michelle Vella Gobey,  German Teacher and Head of Department for German in Catholic Schools, Malta

    The Freizeit/Free Time Project is an exchange project between a secondary school in Malta and a secondary school in Hamburg, German. Pupils aged 14 and 15 from both schools participated in the exchange and spent a week in the partner school/country. The pupils participated in various different activities before, during and after their exchange, all of which aimed to enhance their language skills and improve their intercultural competences.

    Available in English.

    Go to the project page

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    Go International! Project

    Project:Go International!

    International Module Pädagogische Hochschule Tirol (PHT)
    Partners: Dr. Christine Lechner, English Lecturer, ERASMUS Officer PHT
    Mag. Melanie Steiner, Head of International Office, PHT

    The project involves the ongoing development of the International Module and aims to involve ERASMUS students more effectively in intercultural and plurilingual aspects of an ERASMUS study period. The aim is to support and facilitate intercultural learning before – during – after mobility by bringing the international class together and developing intercultural competences.

    Available in English.

    Go to the project page

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    European Federation for Intercultural Learning (EFIL)

    In cooperation with its member organisations, EFIL initiates and implements a number of pan-European projects every year. Their focus lay on various facets of Intercultural Learning: promotion, development of tools and materials, exchange of knowledge and experiences among the European members and between the European and world-wide AFS organisations (international non-profit volunteer-driven exchange organization founded by the American Field Service). Moreover, the projects aim to contribute to the individual mobility of young people, to analyse the impact of intercultural experiences and to build a common and credible identity of AFS in Europe.​

    Available in English.

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    Intercultural Education Resources for Erasmus Students and their Teachers (IEREST)

    IEREST (Intercultural Education Resources for Erasmus Students and their Teachers) is an Erasmus Multilateral Project (2012-2015) which aims at developing an Intercultural Path (a set of teaching modules) to be provided to Erasmus students before, during, and after their experience abroad, in order to encourage learning mobility and to support students in benefiting as much as possible from their international experiences in terms of personal growth and intercultural awareness.

    Available in English.

    Go to the project page

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