Polyphony and Polygraphy: African First-Language Speakers As Learner-Writers at a Private School in South Africa

Authors

  • Muchativugwa Liberty Hove

Abstract

The Telkom Foundation, the corporate social responsibility (CSR) arm of the telecommunications giant in South Africa, funded twenty learners from previously disadvantaged schools to enrol and study at a private school called the International School of South Africa (ISSA) in 2008. Upon enrolment, learners took a proficiency test and results thereof indicated they lacked cognitive academic language proficiency (CALP) skills, especially in reading and writing. The current multi-method longitudinal case study used a questionnaire for the participants, consultations with the learners? parents, an examination of the ISSA entry and exit syllabuses, and observations to assess the participants? language needs. Error analysis, together with contrastive analysis, provided the theoretical framework. One finding was that the participants? change-over from mother-tongue instruction to using English as the LoLT had been done prematurely when the learners had not yet acquired sufficient academic cognitive skills. The findings suggest that intervention that could empower the participants and accommodate the learners? transcultural experiences is enhanced through a needs analysis and use of a relevant and efficient syllabus.

DOI: 10.5901/mjss.2014.v5n14p319

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Published

2014-07-02

How to Cite

Hove, M. L. (2014). Polyphony and Polygraphy: African First-Language Speakers As Learner-Writers at a Private School in South Africa. Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences, 5(14), 319. Retrieved from https://www.richtmann.org/journal/index.php/mjss/article/view/3160

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Articles