Greek language learning in Australia’s Northern Territory: Building learning communities and cultural identity

Marianthi Oikonomakou, George Frazis, Angela Evangelinou-Yiannakis

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    Abstract

    In this paper we provide an evaluative description and report of the various aspects of teaching and learning Greek as a heritage and/or foreign language in the Northern Territory of Australia. Initially, we focus on the importance of the formation of dynamic learning communities through interdisciplinary collaboration. The main purpose of Charles Darwin University’s Greek In-Country Study Program is to support the learning of Greek language and culture through language lessons as well as concurrent cultural activities that are delivered while students are in Greece. After thirteen years of successful implementation of the program, the purpose of this report is to highlight the learning activities that have been completed over these years through a discussion of the research outcomes of the students’ experiences that we believe will underscore the important roles that language, literature, and culture play in the strengthening of one’s Greek identify while living within Australia. Within this framework, basic principles of design and the use of cross-university teaching and learning programs for the Greek language are presented, as well as foregrounding the advantages of current information technology for instructional purposes and, in particular, the maintenance, and perhaps even revival of heritage languages as well as reinforcing their contributions to the role of education in the diaspora.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)315-332
    Number of pages18
    JournalIssues in Educational Research
    Volume32
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 2022

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