Article

Multilingualism as a learning scaffolding element: Reflection on first-year Information Communication Technology networking students

Published in: South African Journal of African Languages
Volume 37, issue 1, 2017, pages: 11–16
DOI: 10.1080/02572117.2017.1316922
Author(s): A Kayode AdesemowoSchool of Information and Communication Technology, South Africa

Abstract

This reflective paper reports on the approach taken and the lesson learnt in introducing multilingualism as a Writing-To-Learn (WTL) strategy for active learning, especially for large classes. WTL strategies are well entrenched in social and humanities courses as opposed to ‘technical’ courses such as Information and Communication Technology (ICT). Multilingualism was introduced from two main angles: glossaries, and trans-languaging. The findings show that glossaries of technical ICT networking terminologies in isiXhosa and Afrikaans are currently limited. A follow-up project would be required to address this. It was further noted that students have varying levels of knowledge and comprehension of their mother tongues, partly by reason of upbringing, exposure or association. The paper concludes that when multilingualism is introduced as part of teaching and learning scaffolding elements, it must have the potential to open up students to a better grasp of the ICT networking course concepts and discipline domain.

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