Issues in the Assessment of Bilinguals Edited by: Virginia C. Mueller Gathercole

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07 Oct 2013
Multilingual Matters
234 x 156


With growing mass migration across the globe, researchers, practitioners, educators and policy makers are increasingly faced with rising numbers of multilingual children and adults. This volume raises key issues surrounding the evaluation of language abilities and proficiency in multilingual speakers, taking into account the facts concerning the processes of learning, speaking and understanding two languages. Issues in the Assessment of Bilinguals brings together researchers working on bilingual and multilingual children and adults in a variety of multilingual settings: typically developing bilingual children, bilingual and multilingual children and adults found in classrooms, and bilingual children growing up in sociolinguistically fluid bilingual communities – making this an essential volume which raises key issues for anyone assessing performance.


Virginia Gathercole knows bilingualism from her own studies as an American in Spain and her long residence in the bilingual communities of South Florida and North Wales. She has also done first-rate studies to understand what development looks like in one and more than one language. So she is the perfect person to bring the two topics together as editor of and major contributor to this wide-ranging volume. Gathercole's incisive intellect and immense practicality shine through every page.

- Barbara Zurer Pearson, University of Massachusetts Amherst, USA

To assess the linguistic skills of bilingual children using tests developed with monolinguals can be fundamentally misleading. The new volume edited by Virginia C. Mueller Gathercole exposes this key fact, and provides a many-faceted exploration of ways to address assessment in bilinguals more productively. A volume for everyone interested in bilingualism.

- D. Kimbrough Oller, The University of Memphis, USA

This edited volume raises an important issue of testing bilinguals in educational settings. The issue is not only theoretical, as the tests in their current form may both hurt bilingual students’ academic opportunities and prevent specialists from noticing language impairments in bilingual children. The volume is of great value for researchers, educators, and education policy makers. It should definitely be used in teachers’ education programs around the world to raise their awareness of multilingualism.

- the LINGUIST LIST 25.2391 - Liubov Baladzhaeva, University of Haifa, Israel

Author Biography:

Virginia C. Mueller Gathercole is Professor of Linguistics at Florida International University, Professor of Psychology at Bangor University, and until recently acted as Co-Director of the Centre for Research on Bilingualism in Theory and Practice at Bangor University. Her research focuses on monolingual and bilingual language acquisition, especially in relation to semantics, morpho-syntax and assessment, and the acquisition of English, Spanish, and Welsh in Spanish-English, Welsh-English, and Spanish-Welsh bilinguals. Professor Gathercole is an Associate Editor of First Language and has been working in the field for over 30 years.

Readership Level:

Postgraduate, Research / Professional, Undergraduate

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