Skoči do osrednje vsebine

Governance of language policy in higher education: overview, good practices and actions


V6-2276 MIZŠ


1.10.2022 - 30.9.2023

Range on year:

0.05 FTE | 2022

Project leader at FDV:

prof.dr. Monika Kalin Golob

Research activity:


The phases of the project and their realization:

Work package 1: LEGAL-FORMAL AND ADMINISTRATIVE MEASURES Objectives: • Review, analysis and synthesis of legal-formal and administrative measures implemented at higher education institutions with the aim of preserving the status of Slovenian as an official and teaching language (statutes of universities, regulations on the organization and work of faculties). • Review of legal-formal measures and activities in comparable EU countries, with an emphasis on whether the use of the national language in these countries at the higher education level is determined at all or is left to the organizations themselves. Work package 2: LEARNING AND TEACHING Objectives: • Review of activities and measures taking place at higher education institutions with the aim of strengthening the communication skills in the Slovenian language of professional workers and students. • Identifying good practices in learning Slovenian for foreign students and university teachers within individual higher education institutions. • To obtain an overview of language policy practice in the implementation of joint study programs between Slovenian and foreign higher education institutions. Work Package 3: TERMINOLOGY MANAGEMENT AND ACCESSIBILITY OF STUDY CONTENTS Objective: • Review of activities and measures taking place at higher education institutions with the aim of developing the Slovene language and terminology in higher education and science, as well as the accessibility of study contents in the Slovene language, and identification of good practices. Work package 4: LANGUAGE POLICY RECOMMENDATIONS Objectives: • Prepare recommendations regarding the management of an appropriate language policy in higher education. • Formulate guidelines and recommendations for strengthening the Slovenian language as a nation-building and state-building element at higher education institutions. • Highlighting the key burning points (strengths and weaknesses, opportunities and threats -- SWOT-analysis) for the placement of Slovenian and English in the learning process at higher education institutions.

Research Organisation:


Citations for bibliographic records:


By reviewing, analysing and synthesising the legal and administrative measures implemented at higher education institutions to maintain the status of Slovene as the official language and the language of instruction, and by reviewing the legal measures and activities in comparable EU countries, we will formulate questions for in-depth interviews with decision-makers. The findings will be a starting point to determine who the appropriate interviewees will be and whether additional analytical tools will be needed to be able to continue work on other work packages. By reviewing the activities already in place in higher education institutions to strengthen communicative competence in Slovene, we will identify good practices in teaching Slovene to foreign students and to teachers and lecturers in individual higher education institutions. We will provide an overview of language policy practices in the implementation of joint study programmes between Slovenian and foreign higher education institutions. A comprehensive outline of the existing offer will be devised by reviewing the current course syllabi of (selected) study programmes and publications on specific courses in the year preceding the start of the survey. Based on the interviews, the survey will provide the assessment of the relevance and effectiveness of the offer and identify possible needs for additional activities. We will be interested in the extent to which existing general and specialised digital language resources, services, portals and manuals are used, and what additional resources are needed. The survey will provide fresh information on the current offer of organised Slovenian language learning for foreign students and teachers at public higher education institutions in the Republic of Slovenia, as well as information on the views of those responsible for the further development of this type of activity. A systematic overview of all activities taking place in higher education institutions will be drawn up, especially from the point of view of the development of the Slovene language and professional terminology, as well as the transfer of concepts and terminology into Slovene. In the case of study programmes in a foreign language, the availability of study materials in Slovene will also be checked. The final result will, on the basis of the previous steps, set out a proposal for a unified language policy for higher education, since previous research reveals the complexity of language planning in higher education: the general declarative struggle for internationalisation and higher quality is not based on genuine reflections about the meaning of these concepts and the measures needed to achieve them. One of these considerations that has never been fully and systematically carried out is the issue of the language of instruction in higher education, which also has an international dimension, both in terms of commitments and in terms of guidelines available in the European Union, the Council of Europe, the OECD, the United Nations etc. A proposal for a long-term language policy that preserves and consolidates the position of Slovene as the language of science and higher education will be presented to political and higher education decision-makers, taking into account multilingualism and internationalisation as a necessity of a high-quality modern university.

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