Universidade do Minho / Instituto de Letras e Ciências Humanas (ILCH)Author(s): Orlando Grossegesse (with Marie Manuelle Costa Silva)
Institution/Organisation: Universidade do Minho / Instituto de Letras e Ciências Humanas (ILCH) (PT)
Minho is an appealing border-region to Northern Spain in terms of demographic structure (young and re-immigrant population from Europe and South America) and international investment in commerce, industry and research (e.g. recent foundation of the International Iberian Institute for Nanotechnology nearby Campus Gualtar). In order to reinforce competitive dynamics, the Minho University (UM) with about 14.000 students is promoting the further internationalization of its Graduate and Postgraduate Programs (all areas) and Research Projects. Internationalization implies students, professors, researchers and administration staff acquiring multilingual and intercultural competences.
In the absence of a National Framework for Multilingualism that puts into practice the existing European policy in this field, and given the present system change (Bologna) of Teacher Training coincident with staff saturation / freeze of school teachers on a National level, the UM created in 2007 an umbrella initiative called APPEAL (Acção / Plano Promoção de Ensino / Aprendizagem das Línguas) for the Minho Region, by initiative of the Faculty of Arts & Humanities (Instituto de Letras e Ciências Humanas – ILCH). It is based on structures that have been developed over the years on different levels: university, faculties that comprise Programmes / Research in the areas of Foreign Languages and the Teacher Training (ILCH and IEP).
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The main goal of the initiative is the increase, continuity and the better quality of interaction between these actors that often operate in an isolated and discontinuous way. It aims to create synergies within and across institutions (HEI, schools and other partners) through a non-hierarchical network combined with bilateral institutional agreements.