Language perspectives

""Available Queensland wide

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students in Queensland have rich and complex language backgrounds.

Today many of these students speak, as their first language/s, varieties that have arisen due to language contact and language shift, making them  learners of Standard Australian English (SAE) as an additional language or dialect when they come to school.

Recognising, respecting, responding

Recognising students' language backgrounds involves careful and considered community based research to identify the local language ecologies.

Respecting the predominant language backgrounds of students, mostly English lexified contact varieties, requires the implementation of ongoing language awareness processes at all levels (community, schools, admin, department).

Responding to such language situations by supporting educators in linguistically complex classrooms (teaching SAE explicitly, identifying students' language backgrounds, making students visible).

Language Perspectives conducts research, partners with community, university and government organisations to conduct significant projects and delivers professional development to educators to foster their knowledge and skills about language and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander EAL/D learners, including looking at the following aspects:

  • Language ecologies and students' language backgrounds
  • Awareness of language contact and resulting varieties
  • Linguistic analysis of target language and student work
  • Assessment of second language proficiency in Standard Australian English (SAE)
  • Explicit language teaching of SAE in whole class contexts
  • Second Language Acquisition processes, progressions and enablers
  • Language data in schools.

Specialist services

The Language Perspectives team is a key contributor and lead implementer to EAL/D materials, pedagogical frameworks and resources such as Education Queensland's Break it Down, Build it Up framework (PDF 433KB), Writing Steps (PDF, 264KB), and ESL Language and Teaching Strategies (ESLATS) (PDF, 450KB).

The team also extends workforce knowledge base and skill sets around EAL/D teaching and assessment for optimising student achievement and regularly provides responses and research to peak professional bodies and government enquiries.

Language Perspectives also provides specialist linguistic and language teaching services to support schools in implementing Education Queensland's EAL/D policy (DOC, 265KB)​.

Language Perspectives staff undertake coaching and mentoring, data collection and analysis, research and publishing, workshops and training and the production of language teaching resources and materials.

Language Perspectives partners with schools and communities to carry out this work in English as an Additional Language/Dialect, contact language varieties and traditional languages.


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 Related information


All training and capacity building services delivered by the Language Perspectives team develop teacher capacity in the Capability Framework for teaching Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander EAL/D learners (PDF, 1.3MB) (RTF, 419KB)

Last updated
08 September 2014