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Foundations of Bilingual Education and Bilingualism (Bilingual Education & Bilingualism) 5th Edition

4.0 out of 5 stars 32 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 858-8952222227
ISBN-10: 1847693555
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Editorial Reviews

Review

I remain awed by Baker's ability to represent all positions and include all viewpoints, while remaining simple and straightforward. It is its scholarly exhaustiveness and complexity, coupled with a simplicity of style, that makes this text invaluable for students and scholars alike.

(Ofelia Garcia, Teachers College, Colombia University)

About the Author

Professor Colin Baker is Pro Vice Chancellor at Bangor University and holds a Personal Chair of the University of Wales.  He is the author of a wide range of books with Multilingual Matters, including a companion volume to this book entitled Bilingual Education: an Introductory Reader co-edited with Ofelia García. His research specific interests are in language planning and bilingual education. The previous editions of this book have sold over 70,000 copies with translations into Japanese, Korean, Spanish, Latvian, Georgian, Greek, Vietnamese and Mandarin. He edits/co-edits three Multilingual Matters Book Series and is Editor of the International Journal of Bilingualism and Bilingual Education.

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Product Details

  • Series: Bilingual Education & Bilingualism (Book 79)
  • Paperback: 512 pages
  • Publisher: Multilingual Matters; 5 edition (February 18, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1847693555
  • ISBN-13: 978-1847693556
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 1.1 x 9.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #22,181 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Baker's book, first edition onward, has been the main text for a number of years in a required introductory course for future bilingual teachers at the university in which I teach. The book has many strengths; it reads well, it has a world perspective on bilingualism, it describes a number of linguistic theories relative to bilingualism, and it provides a clear and thorough foundation for understanding how language policies are designed, and what they are based on. It is important to note that even individuals who have not taken linguistic courses can understand the text because it does a great job of explaining terminology and theories so that the reader can then concentrate on the issues surrounding bilingual education and bilingualism. The text is effective as an introduction to bilingualism because it explores not only linguistic theories, but also looks at sociological and psychological theories that can deepen the understanding of the language dynamics of bilingualism. The premise of the book is that a language is a resource to be nurtured and developed, whether it is a "minority" language or not; this is the opposite of seeing a minority language as a societal, political, or educational problem, a viewpoint that has become increasingly voiced by state-level politicians (with no background in linguistics or teaching) who blame bilingualism for low academic achievement among immigrant youth and have reshaped language policies through state referenda. Baker provides a stark contrast between such perspectives and those in numerous countries in Europe and Asia, where multilingualism is the norm. In summary, Foundations of Bilingual Education and Bilingualism is an excellent resource for those interested in this topic.
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Format: Paperback
Bilingual Education and Bilingualism, is an in depth treatise on the foundations of second language acquisition and is an effectively organized primer on this subject.

Beginning with explicit definitions of the vocabulary of bilingualism, the book explores the origins and methodologies of bilingualism in today's classrooms. The textbook is splendidly footnoted with citations of research by the biggest and most influential names in the field of education, psychology and linguistics, including L.S. Vygotsky, Jim Cummins, S. Krashen and many many more. Beyond the introduction, the book goes into details of much of the research covered. But more than theorizing, the book gives extensive coverage to the political angles that color much of the societal debates over the place and growth of bilingualism in academia. On this score, the editor, Collin Baker of the University of Wales (as part of a series with Nancy Hornberger of the University of Pennsylvania), takes risks in positioning himself as a staunch critic of any measure to reign in the growth of the bilingual education industry. Indeed the extent to which Mr Baker relies on research on heritage language education by such experts as Mr. Cummins belie his deep sympathies for Mr. Cumin's works and his views. That having been said, the editor takes pains to balance the views of all sides of the debate. This is particularly true of his treatment of the government's own contested policy stances on bilingual education.

On the matter of governmental policy and bilingualism in the classroom, the book outdoes itself in shedding light on the intriguing battle between opponents and proponents of bilingualism.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I bought the paper edition some time ago and I really enjoyed it. I have had to refer to it many a time which is why I bought the electronic version, (Kindle) so it would be easier to access and refer to. It has really helped.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
'...Baker reveals that “codeswitching is a frequent behavior among bilinguals, with a variety of valuable purposes and benefits” (Baker 2011, p. 112). For myself, I relied on code-switching with Spanish-speaking students to help build a connection with them and help them feel more at ease around me, and also to insure understanding of difficult concepts or during times of stress. I code-switched into Spanish with my English-speaking students to increase their exposure to Spanish, particularly during times of the day when we were doing a small group activity without one of the Spanish-language models. After all, Baker tells us that “understanding (and speaking) a second or third language quickly grows once there is sufficient exposure and incentive” (Baker 2011, pp. 104-105), and by using more Spanish with my English-speaking students I provided that exposure....'

Read my full discussion of this book at [...]
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This was not a very helpful resource as a teacher. There was very general information provided and studies with lots of holes and problems in the research. Some chapters were interesting and provided helpful information, but I wish there was more sound evidence/research and application for teachers.
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Format: Paperback
This title has become both a text book and a classic. The author lists all the major theories of second language acquisition with clarity, providing a broad range of approaches to bilingualism.
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