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This online, searchable database of profiles allows heritage language programs to exchange ideas and resources with one another.

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English Language Learners

Heritage Languages

As this nation faces a critical shortage of adults with proficiency in languages other than English, we need to develop our own rich linguistic resources, the languages spoken in communities across the United States. CAL and the National Foreign Language Center have joined forces in an effort to overcome the neglect of heritage languages in the United States and to help U.S. schools recognize and develop the heritage language resources of this country.

Heritage Languages in America logoAlliance for the Advancement of Heritage Languages

CAL provides leadership for the Alliance for the Advancement of Heritage Languages with a goal of promoting the conservation and development of the heritage language resources of this country as part of a larger effort to educate citizens who can function professionally in English and other languages. The Alliance recognizes that the United States has a critical need for individuals who have high proficiency in both English and one or more additional languages. To meet this need, the Alliance promotes information exchange, research, and policy development. Visit the Alliance Web site.

Publications and Resources

Heritage Languages in America book coverHeritage Languages in America:  Preserving a National Resource
Heritage Languages in America
outlines what needs to be done to help heritage language speakers develop their languages for use in academic and professional arenas. Read more.

Heritage Language EducationHeritage Language Education:
A New Field Emerging

This volume presents a multidisciplinary perspective on teaching heritage language learners. Learn more.


Pathways Book CoverPathways to Multilingualism: Evolving Perspectives on Immersion Education
This volume focuses on the evolution of perspectives and practices within language immersion education and offers theoretical perspectives, research reviews and empirical studies. Learn more.

Sustaining Linguistic Diversity: Endangered and Minority Languages and Language Varieties NEW
Sustaining Linguistic Diversity brings together a diverse collection of papers by leading researchers and practitioners that describe efforts to maintain and revitalize languages and language varieties throughout the world. Learn more.

Browse more online and print resources on the Heritage Languages in America Web site.