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Code-switching in a college mathematics classroom. (English)
Int. J. Multiling. 6, No. 4, 426-442 (2009).
Summary: This paper presents the findings that explored from the discourse practices of the mathematics teacher educators in initial teacher training colleges in Malawi. It examines how mathematics teacher educators construct a multilingual classroom and how they view code-switching. The discussion is based on pre-observation interviews with four mathematics teacher educators in teacher training colleges and the data collected from their mathematics classroom observations. The research findings indicate that the mathematics teacher educators regard multilingualism and the language practices that come with it such as code-switching more as a problem rather than a resource for teaching and learning. Contrary to the emphasis that code-switching is spontaneous and encouraged in schools, it is found that the nature of code-switching in college mathematics classroom is not spontaneous; rather it is very much controlled and restricted. Furthermore, this paper shows that the dilemmas of code-switching as discussed by Adler (1998, 2001) are more acute in teacher training colleges. This article argues that code-switching needs to be viewed as a resource in college mathematics classrooms and student teachers should be given the opportunity to code-switch without being restricted by the teacher educators. (Contains 2 tables, 2 notes, and 16 endnotes.) (ERIC)
Classification: B50 C59
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