Multilingual Communication in the EU

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Multilingual Communication in the EU

  • Host University

    Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

  • Location

    Amsterdam, The Netherlands

  • Area of Study

    Intercultural Communications, International Communications

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • ECTS Credits

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
  • Overview

    After having succesfully completed this module, students will:
    - have a solid overview of the linguistic diversity within and between all 28 member states of the EU;
    - have a clear understanding of the basic terminology within the field of multilingualism, such as official and non-official languages, majority and minority languages, heritage languages;
    - understand the consequences for EU cititzens of living in a multilingual environment (both on a personal level as well as on a professional level);
    - will have become acquainted with a variety of solutions that companies, schools, hospitals, NGO's have come up with to deal with
    linguistic diversity within the organization;
    - will have become acquainted with the strategies that people (on an individual basis) have come up with to deal with linguistic diversity in
    their lifes.
    - are able to analyze situations where linguistic diversity may cause problems and to help finding creative solutions for these situations.

    In this module, we will study the linguistic landscape in the EU. The EU has 28 member states and 24 official languages. In many of these member states, other languages besides the official language, are spoken as well, some with an official status as regional language or heritage language, some without. Recently, a large number of new languages have entered the EU, as a result of migration. As a result, the EU is currently home to speakers of hundreds of languages and all speakers of those languages have to co-exist and to communicate with each other. We will study the different domains in which this communication takes place and the different views that EU-countries have on the position of these languages. The domains that we will concern ourselves with, are personal life, education, health care, and work (with specific attention for communication within the European Parliament). Concerning the different views on the position of languages, we will study the concepts of majority and minority languages, and official and non-official languages and the consequences of these views on the personal and professional lifes of their speakers. We will practice coping with linguistic diversity by analyzing some real life problematic situations and trying to come up with acceptable solutions for all those involved.

    Lectures and seminars

    Written exam 

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

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