Creating Meaningful, Participatory English Language Teaching Pedagogies for Refugee Women and Their Children

Dr Julie Choi
  • Location: Level 2, Room L.218, 100 Leicester St, Carlton, Parkville

Project Details

While government funded adult ESL programs typically, and understandably, approach language and literacy education using functionalist notions of literacy often for employment purposes, such narrowly focused approaches are inappropriate for a majority of refugee women who have very low level language and literacy skills both in English and their native languages. Due to their visa status, living conditions, lack of resources, and other life circumstances, women are not able to be separated from their young children and have little understanding of how they can play a role in their children’s lives to develop their own and their children’s language and literacy skills in English together.

By gaining an understanding of what the language and literacy practices, resources, learning cultures and life needs of refugee women and their families are, this project seeks to develop an English language teaching and learning pedagogy that draws on techniques and perspectives from multiple disciplines in order to provide a syllabus low level language and literacy refugee adults perceive as meaningful and a participatory framework for building their lives and relationships with their children in English along with other languages.


LALE colleagues; Melbourne Social Equity Institute, Early Learning Center, Arts Education


Applied linguistics; Arts education; Early childhood education