Towards a social and epistemic justice approach for exploring the injustices of English as a Medium of Instruction in basic education

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Abstract

There are millions of children attending English as a Medium of Instruction (EMI) government schools for their basic education. The vast majority of these are in countries across the Global South. In these contexts, EMI policy decisions are rarely based on educational arguments while global learning discussions exist with limited engagement with the challenges of EMI. This is despite a significant evidence base that highlights the widespread impact that EMI has both on educational quality and inequalities. A recent British Council position paper suggests that EMI research tends to be descriptive, perceptions-based and lacking in theoretical underpinning. This paper responds to this critique by bringing together critical theories of social and epistemic justice to develop a series of questions that could be used to interrogate the multiple ways that EMI impacts children’s basic education in the Global South.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)927-941
Number of pages15
JournalEducational Review
Volume74
Issue number5
Early online date29 Sep 2020
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 29 Sep 2020

Keywords

  • English Medium Instruction
  • Learning
  • epistemic justice
  • social justice

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education

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