Organisational experience and benefits

Process evaluation

  • The Language Strategy was embedded in the Centre for Internationalisation and Parallel Language Use (CIP), a research-supported centre. The Strategy has drawn on CIP’s resources both in terms of organisational experience and expertise in language acquisition. This construction has been beneficial both in terms of budget considerations but also in terms of flexibility.
  • Owing to its status as a research-supported project the Language Strategy has produced several benefits:
    • The language activities have been based on the most recent international knowledge on the integration of content and language.
    • The challenges of local language issues has led to several publications, often as a result of collaboration between language and content teachers.
    • The results can be disseminated broadly but also become an integrated part of the international discourse on the integration of language and content.
  • The Language Strategy has conducted needs analyses throughout the project period. This has been done through a combination of meetings with the academic units, questionnaire surveys and the actual development work. It quickly became evident that neither approach would be sufficient on its own as these types of needs are complex and can be defined by the students’ wishes, the teachers’ academic arguments or the strategic goals of the directors of study.
  • The Language Strategy funding was originally supposed to function as a pool of funds that the academic units could apply for. However, it very quickly became clear that most academic departments needed Language Strategy staff to assist with the completion of the application, keep track of the funds if the project covered several semesters, supervise the project, and manage the final evaluation.
  • The Language Strategy has been supervised by a cross-organisational steering committee, which has met twice annually and contributed to maintaining focus and progress. The terms of reference and guidelines established during the initial stages of the project have provided a solid operational basis.
  • Finally, the steering committee has attached great importance to the possibility of embedding the pilot projects, and this has been the central criterion for granting funds from the development pool. As a consequence, the continuation of the individual projects has become more realistic, and the departments’ commitment to embrace the projects has been strengthened.

The Language Strategy can stand as an example for the implementation of large-scale future development projects. Click here a checklist of organisational experiences.