Saturday, April 4, 2009

Language-learning linkwrap 4/4/2009

European Parliament split over language teaching: Next time any of my fellow yanks get themselves in a tizzy regarding the use of Spanish in the U.S., just remember: it could be worse; translation costs could take up 1% of our budget. Tangential money quote: "'[P]romoting the learning of […] an international "lingua franca",' such as English, should be a 'political priority'." As if there were another international lingua franca.

Young Americans going abroad to teach: When in economic peril, teach English abroad.

Statistical language learning in neonates revealed by event-related brain potentials: Say what? Babies can learn in their sleep! I wonder when and if that wears off...

On to Z! Quirky regional dictionary nears finish: For buffs of obscure Americanisms, this book's for you.

More languages, not fewer: Professor Erin Hippolyte "regularly see[s] statistics that link world language proficiency to salaries that are 8-20 percent higher." What exactly is a "world language" anyway? I wonder if it's a West Virginia regionalism for "foreign language". Someone should check a quirky regional dictionary. I am probably proficient in one or two "world languages", so where do I apply for the raise? When are Professor Hippolyte's office hours?

The Waver's Dilemma: A lot more information on how runners communicate in English than I gave you in my post on the runners' nod. For the record, I'm personally against waiving on the grounds that it makes you break form.

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