Latest News

A selection of language-related news. Does not claim to be comprehensive or represent the views of SCILT.


Scottish Languages Review – Issue 36 now published

14 September 2021 (SCILT)

At long last, the Scottish Languages Review is back!

The phenomenon of translanguaging is a central theme of the current issue, thanks to two fascinating antipodal perspectives. The second theme of this issue is the use of L2 in the classroom. Last but not least, Sonja Fedrizzi provides some highly perceptive and timely insights into how her secondary teaching has changed over periods of lockdown and blended learning, and reflects on how this experience can be valuable as teachers across Scotland and beyond return to the classroom.


Posted in: Research, SCILT

Lilian Thuram: Amid England-Scotland debate, France legend and anti-racism campaigner has say on taking knee - and much more

13 June 2021 (The Scotsman)

It can feel as if there are two Lilian Thurams. 

One is the iconic French footballer. A defender who, across a stellar career that took him from Monaco to Parma, Juventus and finally Barcelona, became his country’s most capped player, and the cornerstone of the World Cup triumph in 1998 and the European Championships two years later.

The other Thuram is the devoted and passionate rights campaigner that the 49-year-old has become since his playing days ended. A man who established a Foundation For Education Against Racism, and has turned to the written word, with his first book, My Black Stars, now translated into English.

Yet, Thuram – inspired to write it because slaves were the only people of his skin colour he was told about in school, not scientists, explorers, philosophers and the so many more black pioneers that he has chronicled – doesn’t have to think twice when asked about the legacy he hopes for.

“It isn’t difficult,” he said, speaking after the book’s launch hosted by Scotland s National Centre for Languages/University of Strathclyde this week. “I’m extremely proud of winning the World Cup, and all that I did in my career. But at the end of the day being a footballer was my job. Fighting for equality is my life, though, what makes me proudest, and how I would like to be remembered.”


SCILT Winter 2020 newsletter published

27 November 2020 (SCILT)

The latest edition of the SCILT newsletter is here! Read about SCILT’s work to support the learning and teaching of languages, including our professional learning offer, our motivating competitions and our programme of support during school closures. Find out how schools celebrated European Day of Languages, and hear from local authorities about their latest inspiring initiatives. There is also the opportunity to read about the work our partners have been doing to support language learning in Scotland.


University of Strathclyde School of Education podcast #6

9 November 2020 (University of Strathclyde)

The podcast series brings a mix of 'meet an academic' interviews, information about our courses, thought pieces, conversations and provocations on all things education.

In episode #6 learn about the work of Scotland's National Centre for Languages, with director, Fhiona Mackay.


New drive to bring Arabic into Scottish schools

27 October 2020 (TES)

A new initiative aims to bring the teaching of Arabic into both primary and secondary schools in Scotland.

This week the Scottish primaries involved in a new programme offering an insight into Arabic language and culture will receive boxes of Arabic artefacts, such as books, scarves, musical instruments and tea sets.

Scottish schools are open but movement in and out of buildings remains restricted as a result of Covid-19. Scilt, Scotland’s National Centre for Languages, has, however, found a way to bring the wider world to pupils at a time when their ability to travel is also much reduced.

The centre, based at the University of Strathclyde, is offering an insight into Arabic language and culture in 15 primary and secondary schools around Scotland. The courses include online lessons from native-speaking teachers of Arabic in the UK and link-ups with native Arabic speakers overseas.

The centre was keen to make the experience tangible, hence the delivery of the boxes.

Scilt director Fhiona Mackay says: “It’s really important that we encourage diversity in language learning. That’s what the 1+2 approach to language learning [in Scotland] should be all about – particularly language three should be an opportunity to explore languages that otherwise children would not be exposed to. It is absolutely right that they should have the chance to experience a language that does not have the same script or alphabet as Latin or Germanic-based languages.

“We also wanted to make sure that children were getting a view of the Arabic world that was not about war, terrorism or refugees. We wanted them to see there is something quite wonderful about this ancient civilisation and help them relate that back to their own experience in Scotland.”

The courses offer learners the chance to explore the secular culture of Arabic nations and to receive a grounding in the Arabic language, which is a first language in more than 20 countries and the fifth most widely spoken in the world.


Scotland loves languages: A celebration of success

2 March 2020 (SCILT)

Language leaders and local authority development officers joined representatives from national education organisations for a day-long event on 25 February 2020 to share the latest information on language learning in Scotland and to celebrate creative and innovative successes in language teaching.

The event, “Scotland loves languages: A celebration of success” was held in The Ramshorn at the University of Strathclyde. Delegates received an overview from Education Scotland on the position nationally of languages in the primary and secondary sectors and an update on the implementation of the Scottish Government’s flagship policy, “Language learning in Scotland: A 1+2 approach”. Delegates also heard analysis on uptake and attainment in languages, with a focus on data from the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA). Speakers included representatives from Education Scotland, Scotdec, SQA and the University of Strathclyde.

Feedback from delegates has been positive. One stated: “[It was] enlightening to hear of developments across language learning and with the implementation of policy. [There were] plenty of ideas to cascade and disseminate to my schools. [It was] very useful to hear the present position of the 1+2 policy.”

Fhiona Mackay, Director of SCILT, states: “Language learning enriches lives and opens doors to opportunities.  It encourages our youngsters to be curious about the world, widens horizons and develops understanding of other people, cultures, traditions and ways of life.  Through learning other languages, we also develop a deeper understanding of our mother tongues and a greater appreciation of our own heritage.  In other words, language learning builds tolerance and cohesion by giving us a way of recognising our similarities while celebrating what makes us different and unique.  In short, it makes us citizens of the world.”

The event marked the annual celebration of languages, “Languages Week Scotland”. This week of events and activities in schools around the country showcases the wide range of languages learned and spoken in Scotland.

Depute First Minister, John Swinney, supports Languages Week Scotland and attended the launch on 4 February 2020 at the Scottish Parliament.

A social media campaign #ScotlandLovesLanguages ran through the duration of the week. Schools were able to share and celebrate the languages learned and spoken in their classrooms.

SCILT works with Education Scotland and LANGS (Languages Network Group Scotland) to deliver Languages Week Scotland.

Follow the hashtag #ScotlandLovesLanguages and discover how Scotland celebrated language learning this February.



The Ramshorn and Graveyard Digital Trail - now available!

23 October 2019 (SCILT)

If you find yourself in the Merchant City area of Glasgow why not complete our new 'The Ramshorn and Graveyard' digital trail? Pupils from Glasgow Gaelic School, Holyrood Secondary, Shawlands Academy and St Roch's Secondary worked with SCILT and Global Treasure Apps to create a multilingual trail around the new SCILT and CISS premises. The trail encourages visitors to learn about the history of the area by following clues set by the pupils, and gives people the chance to test their language skills.

The Ramshorn and Graveyard Digital Trail is available to download from Global Treasure Apps in Arabic, English, French, Gaelic, German, Italian, Mandarin, Polish, Spanish and Urdu.

Find Global Treasure Apps on the App store or Google Play


The Ramshorn Renovation

7 October 2019 (University of Strathclyde)

Find out more about the Ramshorn Theatre renovation that was completed in summer 2019, with Estates Services managing the project.

The Ramshorn is a category A-listed building, reflecting its regional importance and local interest. Working with listed buildings comes with its own challenges, as it was necessary to preserve the unique architectural and historical features of the church.

This project saw the transformation of a neglected historic building into a bright modern office environment and multi-use space. The old theatre space and the hall were turned into flexible event and teaching spaces that will act as a hub for cultural exchange, performances and engagement work with schools, scholars, local government and the public.

[..] SCILT and CISS are settling in well in their new home, and are thrilled to be giving the building a new purpose and continuing the story of the Ramshorn.


Graeme High pupil wins multilingual poetry award

2 April 2018 (Falkirk Herald)

The multilingual talents of budding poets from Graeme High and Moray Primary were celebrated in the 2018 Mother Tongue Other Tongue awards. 

Graeme High pupil Danai Nikitea was crowned the winner of the Mother Tongue category during a prestigious ceremony at University of Strathclyde on March 17. 

While Kole Murray from Moray Primary and Harely Ewen and Simi Singh, both from Graeme High, were Highly Commended in the Other Tongue category. 

These students used their language skills to create and share poetry for the ceremony.


School of Modern Languages and Cultures (SMLC) working with schools

11 December 2017 (University of Glasgow)

Dr Elizabeth Geary Keohane (French) and Dr Eamon McCarthy (Hispanic Studies), along with SCILT (Scotland's National Centre for Languages) colleagues Louise Whyte and Janette Kelso at the University of Strathclyde, have organised and facilitated two workshops to date as part of the SMLC Cross-Sector Schools Outreach Workshops for Secondary Teachers and Pupils.


The 1+2 Languages Leadership Programme

20 April 2017 (SCILT)

Summer School is on! The national leadership programme formerly known as Train the Trainer has undergone an extensive review over the last year.

Under its new name, The 1+2 Languages Leadership Programme, this flagship national leadership programme will be open for registration from Monday. Invitations will go out to local authority representatives and teacher education institutions. The programme has Professional Recognition accreditation from GTCS and is completely free of charge for educators in the public sector. Beginning with a Summer School which will take place from Monday 3rd to Friday 7th July 2017 at the University of Strathclyde’s city centre campus in Glasgow.

Hosted by SCILT and Education Scotland, The 1+2 Languages Leadership Programme is aimed at those who have, or aspire to have, a responsibility for leading languages and developing colleagues’ capacity to deliver the 1+2 approach to languages.

The revised programme features inputs from a wide variety of speakers with an extensive range of expertise in teaching and leading languages. The inclusion of parallel sessions offers choice to participants, and the content is a balance of theory, policy and practice around language learning and teaching, leadership, personal reflection and professional evaluation.

The themes of this updated Summer School are:
  • 1+2 languages: the national picture and the position of languages in the National Improvement Framework and the Scottish Attainment Challenge
  • Strategic leadership in languages: planning and evaluation
  • Progression in language learning
  • Parental and wider engagement in language learning
  • Raising attainment: practical ways to develop literacy skills across languages
  • L3 – existing models, diversity of languages
  • Inclusive practice in languages
  • Supporting bilingual learners
Interested in participating in The 1+2 Languages Leadership Programme? Contact your local authority QIO.

Dumbarton Academy get to grips with business and language

6 March 2017 (Dumbarton Reporter)

Pupils from Dumbarton Academy had the opportunity to learn the language of business at a recent school event.

Third year students heard from a range of local business leaders who view language skills as key to the growth and success of their company.

The event demonstrated the relevance of these skills in a work context and aimed to encourage pupils to continue with their language studies into the senior phase of their secondary education, and beyond school.

Cara Brown, subject leader for Modern Languages at Dumbarton Academy, said: “The event was a success, emphasised by the positive feedback given by pupils. The presentations delivered by the range of speakers were well received by everyone involved and really engaged the learners who discovered the value of language skills for employment and for life beyond school.”

One of the pupils added: “I enjoyed hearing different peoples’ stories and learning about what they had been able to do through learning another language. I was surprised to find out how many ways languages can be useful.”


How a deaf teenager from Congo found her voice in poetry

6 October 2016 (STV News)

For most of her life, it seemed as though Keren Mingole would never have a place to call home.

Forced to escape war-torn country of DR Congo, the 16-year-old has been brought up in Scotland from a very early age. Not only faced with the difficulty of communicating with strangers, Keren also had to learn British Sign Language.

[..] In 2015, an opportunity arose for Keren to explore and draw from her difficult experiences as a child through a multilingual poetry contest.

The Mother Tongue Other Tongue competition explores cultural identity, and allows pupils from P1-S6 to enter creative pieces of work and celebrate the many different languages used in schools throughout the UK.

Pupils from across Scotland are currently participating in the multi-cultural competition, which is officially endorsed by Nobel Peace prize winner Malala Yousafzai. Scottish Makar Jackie Kay is also the official patron.

Keren won the 2015 Mother Tongue Other Tongue competition with her poem 'Who am I?' - a composition of her journey from her native home to her current home, Scotland.


Related Links

National Poetry Day (STV News, 6 October 2016) See Jackie Kay and one of last year's MTOT winners, Keren Mingole, talk about poetry in their lives (the programme is available on iPlayer until 13/09/16 - watch from 28:50).

Pupils explore life of the poets

29 March 2016 (Southern Reporter)

The Abbotsford Trust and Burgh Primary School, 
Galashiels have been working on a project exploring Sir Walter Scott’s famous home.

Primary 6 pupils have recently visited Abbotsford to try out three different sessions from the Abbotsford Schools Programme.

Pupils explored the historic house and wrote poems based on the treasures that Sir Walter Scott collected, and met Mrs Oakley, a visitor from Scott’s day with lots of weird and wonderful traditional tales to share.

They also discovered Sir Walter’s life and work in the visitor centre exhibition and created drawings of the house and its grotesque clay gargoyles.

Pupils then used what they discovered and learned back in the classroom to create a timeline of Scott’s life, where they also investigated differences between life then and now using a range of primary sources.

Pupils also created interactive games, thought about planning and budgeting for a visit too Abbotsford, identified French vocabulary to describe some of the artefacts in the house and wrote their own evaluation reports reflecting on their visits.


SCILT at Language Show Live

10 March 2016 (SCILT)

We’ll be at Language Show Live Scotland at the SECC in Glasgow for the 2-day celebration of all things languages this weekend, so if you’re attending come and see us at stand 432. Our CISS colleagues will be based at stand 440 and we’re also running a number of seminars over the course of the event.

See the Language Show Live website for more information. Hope to see you there!


Language Trends 2014-2015

5 November 2015 (SCILT)

We have conducted a brief analysis of published SQA language statistics at SCQF levels 4-7 in 2014 and 2015.

See the 'Language Trends in Scotland 2014-15' report on our website.


SCILT Business Breakfasts webpage now live

8 May 2015 (SCILT)

SCILT was delighted to host three motivational Business Breakfast events in Glasgow, Edinburgh and Aberdeen at the beginning of this year. Our main aim was to support S3-S6 pupils in the uptake of language learning in the senior phase by providing schools with an opportunity to hear from various dynamic speakers who view language skills as a key part to the success of their businesses.

We have uploaded presentations and photographs from the event onto our website. You might find the presentations useful to use with your pupils to promote the benefits of languages.

Visit our Business Breakfasts 2015 webpage for more information.


Learning languages

24 November 2014 (Teachers' Resource)

With the introduction of the Scottish Government’s ‘1+2 approach’ to language learning from primary one, the spotlight is back on languages in school – but as it’s no longer compulsory for students to take a language in secondary, how are schools encouraging pupils to keep going with French, Spanish, Gaelic and beyond? We caught up with the team at Scotland’s National Centre for Languages and one teacher whose department is bucking national trends in language education...

From Teachers Resource magazine.

Related Files

Languages for life

24 November 2014 (Angus Council)

School pupils in Angus recently took part in an ‘on the job’ workshop which used their language skills in real-life humanitarian crisis scenarios.

At the workshop, pupils had to provide a solution to two real-life crisis scenarios which required them to work on a solution and present the solution in French.

The top eight winning teams were selected from each project by the school staff and they will now compete in a Dragon’s Den Panel consisting of Naval, Angus and SCILT staff on 17 December.


News at a glance – Language centre announces poetry contest

5 September 2014 (TESS)

A bilingual poetry competition is being launched by Scotland’s National Centre for Languages, backed by Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy. The competition, initially aimed at Glasgow pupils, includes two strands: a “mother tongue” category that encourages non-native English speakers to write in their own language, and an “other tongue” category, which invites young people to enter using a language they are studying in school. If the pilot goes well, the competition could be extended nationally next year.


News Release: Bilingual school poetry competition launched

27 August 2014 (University of Strathclyde)

A poetry competition backed by Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy is being launched by the University of Strathclyde-based SCILT, Scotland's National Centre for Languages.

The Mother Tongue Other Tongue competition comprises two categories – 'Mother Tongue', which encourages non-native English speakers to write poetry in their mother tongue language, and 'Other Tongue', which encourages young people to write poetry in the additional language they are studying in school.


Related Links

Mother Tongue Other Tongue (Barmulloch Primary Parent/Carer Council, 13 August 2014)

Languages and STEM skills, opening doors!

31 July 2014 (Education Scotland's Learning Blog)

SCILT, Scotland’s National Centre for Languages, is working with businesses and schools in Scotland to promote languages as a key skill for employment.

Operating effectively in a global economy relies on many skills and includes the right language skills. People who can communicate, at least conversationally, can make all the difference in the conduct of business, consolidating relationships with existing suppliers and customers and opening the way to new overseas contacts. When combined with STEM skills, the career opportunities in a vast array of sectors widens.


Gap-year students to assist pupils with languages

3 July 2014 (The Herald)

Youngsters who take a gap year before starting university, college or employment are being targeted in a drive to improve language learning in the nation's schools.

Under the initiative, volunteers are twinned with primary and secondary schools to demonstrate the importance of learning a language for their trips and to promote wider cultural awareness.

The project also involves university language students who travel overseas on study placements or work as language assistants with the British Council.

Volunteers are linked with secondary schools that are already learning the language of the country they are visiting - either in Europe or further afield, with Spanish prevalent in South America and French commonly spoken in Africa.

In primary schools the focus is on promoting language learning more generally. The volunteers visit pupils before they go, stay in touch when they are overseas and return to the schools when they finish to update them on their progress - with input from teachers throughout to ensure the work fits in with the curriculum.

The Global Citizenship programme, a partnership between the British Council, Scotland's National Centre for Languages at Strathclyde University, NUS Scotland and Scottish-based educational charity Project Trust, has already been run as a pilot in 15 primary and secondary schools in Stirling and Falkirk.


Related Links

Teenager leads the way with lessons on Ghana (The Herald, 3 July 2014)

Visit the Project Trust pages on our website for more information on the partnership project.

Latest edition of Scottish Languages Review published

18 February 2014 (SCILT)

Issue 27 of the Scottish Languages Review has been published.

This edition looks at the range of projects that Foreign Language Assistants can implement. There is an article on teaching Mandarin tones to Anglophone learners and an article on a module which assesses the progress and gains made by university students during their residence abroad. We look at the support that can be provided by university language professional to help teachers’ efforts in implementing and evaluating action research projects. We report on the successes and challenges of the ‘Routes into Languages’ initiative in England and Wales and consider its potential for Scotland.


SCILT Glow Meet: Wednesday 20th November

13 November 2013 (SCILT)

The countdown is most definitely on! No, not to Christmas, but to the first of SCILT’s Autumn series of Glow Meets of course.

When: Wednesday 20th November
Time: 4pm-5pm

Title: Using native speakers in the classroom: a guide to good practice 

Host: Dr Hannah Doughty
Suitable for teachers and managers from all sectors, this session will provide information about the types of native speakers you could invite into your classroom and will explore a range of strategies that native speakers could use to complement your language lesson.

If you intend to participate in this Glow Meet, please collect the materials you need from the KEY RESOURCES in the SHARE section of the #mlscilt professional learning community.

Should you have any questions you would like Dr Doughty to address in the Glow Meet, please add a question in the SUPPORT section of #mlscilt or send an e-mail entitled ‘Glow Meet question’ to

To join the meeting on Wednesday 20th November, go to the CONNECT area and select TAKE PART in the grey web meeting room.

Vacancy: Professional Development Officer

11 November 2013 (SCILT)

SCILT is currently looking for a new Professional Development Officer on a seconded or fixed term basis. If you are a solution-focussed, creative practitioner, experienced at leading languages in a secondary context and would like to join our dynamic team then please follow the link below to the University of Strathclyde vacancies website. 


Word Wizard Competition! New for school session 2013-2014

17 September 2013 (SCILT)

We are pleased to announce that our brand new spelling competition, Word Wizard, will be launched very shortly.

This competition is aimed at encouraging S1- S3 pupils, studying French, German, Spanish, Mandarin and Gaelic, to learn vocabulary, and have fun at the same time.

If you want to motivate your pupils, and take part in this new initiative, watch this space for details of how to register.

1+2 Clarification and Key Messages

26 August 2013 (SCILT/Education Scotland)

Education Scotland has identified the key messages from the 'Language Learning in Scotland: A 1+2 approach' report to help local authorities and schools identify priorities and plan their strategic approach to 1+2. This can now be accessed on the 1+2 section of our website, alongside the ‘Supporting self-evaluation and planning for improvement’ audit tool Education Scotland also developed to help Local Authorities identify their priorities and next steps for taking forward the recommendations.


Scottish Languages Review – Issue 26 now published

7 June 2013 (SCILT)

This edition includes a look at the use of languages in the financial services sector. There is an article from a baccalaureate student on his experience of researching the use of language skills in the United Nations and contribution from a former Advanced Higher pupil in three languages outlining her journey to successful professional freelance linguist. We look a creative approaches to modern language teaching in the primary school, and an action research project which provides evidence of how children with severe social, emotional and behavioural needs benefitted from their language learning experience.


Posted in: SCILT, SCILT news

SCILT's Summer Glow Meets

6 June 2013 (SCILT)

SCILT's Summer Series of GLOW is now over. If you want to revisit them, share them with others, or if you missed out the first time round, you can view them at #mlscilt.

Remember to leave an intention on the CHANGE page of the #mlscilt professional learning community afterwards.

NEWS JUST IN: SCILT GLOW Meet re-commissioned for a new series in the autumn!


Language learning in action: first National Modern Languages Spelling Bee

6 June 2013 (SCILT)

School pupils from the Highlands to the Borders tested their linguistic skills in the final of Scotland's first National Modern Languages Spelling Bee, at the Scottish Parliament on Friday 31 May.

In the spirit of “1+2”, pupils demonstrated their knowledge of vocabulary and spelling in French, German or Spanish before an audience of parents, teachers, fellow pupils and invited guests.

Congratulations to all the pupils who took part in the competition and especially to those who competed so admirably in Friday's final.

The winners in each category were:

1st Manon Robinson – Glen Urquhart High School
2nd Jessica Fowler – The Nicolson Institute
3rd Ellis Wright – Boclair Academy
4th Veronica Haughey – The Glasgow Academy

1st Amy Spence – Carluke High School
2nd Zainab Munir – The Glasgow Academy
3rd Jack Anderson – Carluke High School
4th Rosie Hutcheon – The Glasgow Academy

1st Jodie Howlett – Bo’ness Academy
2nd Ben Gallacher – Paisley Grammar School
3rd Ben Hewitt – Paisley Grammar School
4th Yanna Zubido – Paisley Grammar School

We are in the process of developing a page on our website to showcase the final, including photos and video footage of proceedings, so please keep checking back!

Feedback from the inaugural event has been positive and encouraging and we will use this to build on our experience to make the Spelling Bee Competition even better next year.  We will be sending out details of the competition for 2014 at the start of the new term in August so please do sign up! 

If you'd like further information about this year's competition please visit our website.


Related Files

Related Links

Language learning in action: first National Modern Languages Spelling Bee (University of Strathclyde Press Release, 30 May 2013)

First National Scottish Spelling Bee Competition (Charleston Academy, 2 June 2013)

Manon Robinson - First in National Scottish Spelling Bee Competition (Glenurquhart High School, 3 June 2013)

First National Scottish Spelling Bee Competition

2 June 2013 (Charleston Academy)

Claire Macleod (1L1) represented Charleston Academy at the National Spelling Bee competition held at the Scottish Parliament on Friday. She achieved the highest score of all the first years taking part. She was very dedicated and practised every lunch time the week leading up to the event. Danielle Ross (1K1) came second and was invited as official supporter. Her enthusiasm was very much appreciated by all.

Thirty seven S1 pupils from twenty schools in thirteen authorities were invited to compete in the final. They were asked to learn two hundred words in French, German or Spanish. They had to be able to translate the words from English and spell them using the alphabet of the target language. They had to spell as many words as possible in one minute.


1+2 Case Study published on SCILT website

8 March 2013 (SCILT)

The first of our case studies showcasing how schools across Scotland are responding to the recommendations in 'Language Learning in Scotland: A 1 + 2 Approach' has been published on our website. Westercraigs Nursery in Glasgow celebrates the range of languages spoken by the children at home as well as offering specific learning experiences in French, Italian and Gaelic. Find out more about how the nursery promotes the importance and value of learning languages to the children and their families.


Fair Trade Fortnight – resources

1 March 2013 (SCILT)

If your school is involved in Fair Trade Fortnight, you may well find these resources useful. SCILT has sourced these resources from YouTube and Glow.

Related Links


For those of you teaching French, a school in Aberdeen has posted interesting teaching materials in the “Resources and Sharing” section of the National Glow Site. This link will take you directly to the folder, but you will need your Glow login.


You Tube is an open forum where anyone can post clips and comments. Please check the appropriateness of all content before using with your class.

Spanish Videos:

French Videos:

Italian Videos:

German Videos:

Guidance on NAR

29 January 2013 (SCILT)

Are you bamboozled by NAR? Do you need help to find materials relevant to language teaching? SCILT has developed a PowerPoint to guide you through the suggested assessment approaches that focus on Modern Languages.


SCILT Vacancy - Professional Development Officer

18 January 2013 (SCILT)

Due to recent staffing changes, a vacancy for a Professional Development Officer at SCILT/CISS has arisen.

This is an exciting opportunity to work at national level and support the planning and implementation of the new “1+2” Languages Policy. The turnaround time for applications is tight – the deadline is the 28th January – and we hope to interview on the 4th or 5th February.

This post is available on secondment or as a fixed-term contract to 31st March 2015, with strong possibility of extension beyond that date.

For further details and an application pack, please visit the HR website.


Sacre bleu! Getting children to study languages is tough

11 January 2013 (TESS)

The difficulties in persuading pupils to study foreign languages at Higher has been underlined by a report that compares languages and social subjects uptake.

The report, which uses social subjects as a comparator since many pupils choose these over languages, finds that the "conversion rate" for languages from Standard grade and Intermediate is "significantly" below that for social subjects.


Primary adds success by teaching 1+5

14 December 2012 (TESS)

The prospect of teaching 1+2 languages from P1 is a daunting one for many in the primary sector.

But today, the Scottish Parliament's European and External Relations Committee will launch an inquiry into the teaching of languages in primary - at a school where 1+5 is the norm.

At Dalmarnock Primary, in the east end of Glasgow, pupils have access to French, Spanish, Italian, Russian and Greek, in addition to their home language of English.


Christmas websites

7 December 2012 (SCILT)

We have pulled together a list of our favourite Christmas websites for teachers to use in class. These websites cover Christmas in France, Germany, Spain and around the world.


New CPD for primary and secondary teachers

29 November 2012 (SCILT)

SCILT is delighted to announce we have expanded our Professional Learning menu to include further options for Primary and Secondary teachers from our colleagues, the Institut Français and the Consejería de Educación. To download the new menus visit the relevant Professional Development pages on our website.


EDL 2012 blog

27 November 2012 (SCILT)

Our EDL2012 blog is now live! For a sneaky peek to see how the prize winning and other schools celebrated 26th September visit our EDL 2012 blog. There’s still time to add details of your school’s EDL, please send a short description of the event and any photos or film you would like included in your post to our Information Officer.

If you are already thinking ahead to 21st February 2013 (International Mother Language Day) or 9th May 2013 (Europe Day) or even the next European Day of Languages on 26th September 2013, all our EDL blogs over recent years have lots of great ideas that you might want to borrow or adapt for your own celebrations.


Improving language opportunities for Scotland’s young people

27 November 2012 (Engage for Education)

Sarah Breslin, Director of SCILT, Scotland’s National Centre for Languages at the University of Strathclyde, talks about the importance of the Scottish Government’s 1+2 languages policy.


Latest edition of SCILT newsletter published

20 November 2012 (SCILT)

The latest edition of the SCILT newsletter has been published. It includes stories on language activities and events from schools across Scotland, including how schools celebrated this year's European Day of Languages. SCILT updates readers on the pilot schools and the 1+2 languages agenda. There are also details on SCILT's new website and the brand new competition we are running this year - the Spelling Bee! As ever, readers will be interested to read about the great work of our partners in promoting languages in Scotland, including a fabulous new website from Education Scotland supporting languages in the primary school.


Interview: Sarah Breslin

2 November 2012 (TESS)

The director of SCILT, Scotland's National Centre for Languages based at the University of Strathclyde, talks about the 1+2 policy, the benefits of CfE and how to persuade pupils to stick with languages.


Related Links

A reader's response to the TESS Interview: Sarah Breslin (2 November)

"This has been a most interesting article to read. Many thanks to Sarah for all her hard work and support of the MFL teachers in Scotland. We are lucky to have such a fantastic professional with great personality. The 1+2 is an ambitious but not impossible goal to achieve - if all stakeholders are willing to work together for the benefit of generations to come."  (rosered27, TES Letters, 9 November 2012)

SCILT European Day of Languages 2012 Competition Winners

23 October 2012 (SCILT)

We are thrilled to announce the prize winners for our European Day of Languages 2012 competition.

With up to £500 worth of prizes to award in each of the three categories, our judges were particularly looking out for EDL celebrations that best showcased creativity and innovation, pupil voice and responsibility, interdisciplinary learning and partnership working. Entries involved game shows, fundraising events, construction challenges, treasure hunts, dances, film making and peer led language learning among other language and culturally focused experiences.

In the primary category, 1st prize went to Glasgow Academy Prep School’s ‘Ambassador’s Project’, 2nd prize was awarded to Battlefield Primary School ‘European Challenge Game Show’. The S1-S3 category was won by Jordanhill School’s ‘EDL Celebration’. After much deliberation, the judges awarded joint 1st prize in the S4-S6 category to All Saint’s Secondary’s ‘EDL IDL event’ and Madras College’s ‘Languages Need You!’.

Congratulations to all schools that took part, goodie bags and prizes will be with you all shortly.

Why not put European Day of Languages, 26th September 2013 in your diary now? SCILT’s annual EDL competition will run next year too, and you have to be in it to win it after all.

University of Strathclyde Education Scotland British Council Scotland The Scottish Government
SCILT - Scotlands National centre for Languages