In a globalized world, those who can communicate effectively in more than one language and across cultures, have a great advantage.
Such language proficiency is critical for business, trade, diplomacy, and can help to promote mutual understanding and respect.
For students, learning more than one language can enrich their academic and life experiences and open doors to opportunities.
Since 1959, CAL has actively worked with partners around the world to promote literacy in world languages and improve the learning of English as international language. Currently, CAL staff conduct research and develop practical solutions to support successful language programs for learners at all levels of instruction (early childhood, elementary, secondary, higher education, and adult education).
We are committed to supporting language learning and cultural understanding within the United States and around the world.
CAL's World Language Team Can Help Achieve Your Goals
CAL offers virtual, in-person, and hybrid models of professional development, technical assistance, and tailored services for educators of world languages at all levels of instruction.
Here are some of the areas where we can assist and guide you:
- program evaluation;
- needs assessment;
- design services;
- curriculum review;
- assessment development;
- review of local language assessments, rubrics, and rater training materials;
- workshops and courses on planning for language assessment and developing classroom assessment tasks; and
- research studies.
Our services are tailored for your target audience: for teachers, administrators, schools, districts, and/or other institutions that are planning or implementing programs for language learners.
CAL’s World Languages team is pleased to offer research solutions resulting in written reports and presentations based on quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methodologies. Our research activities include literature reviews, classroom observations, focus groups, interviews, surveys, review of extant program data, and proficiency testing.
To learn more about CAL's work and resources about this topic, browse the subtopics within this section below.
To ensure the quality of Massachusetts’ world language education, the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) contracted CAL to research and provide recommendations on how to update their existing Massachusetts world language standards.
Research the needs of less common programs and develop supplementary resources to ensure that the revised 2021 Massachusetts World Languages Curriculum Framework is actionable and inclusive for all educators.
The Center for Applied Linguistics is working in collaboration with Georgetown University to establish the Assessment and Evaluation Language Resource Center (AELRC) funded by the U.S. Department of Education.
STARTALK was created in 2006 to provide learning opportunities in the critical languages for students (K-16) and professional development for teachers of the critical languages, mainly through programs offered during the summer.
CAL is serving as an external consultant to the Peace Corps to review and validate the Peace Corps standards for a Peace Corps Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) Certificate.
CAL conducted a national survey of foreign language instruction in public and private elementary and secondary schools to provide an updated national and regional portrait of foreign language instruction in the United States.
CAL was awarded a grant to fund a study designed to provide study abroad programs, students, host families, and institutions of higher education with information on how to optimize the language learning benefits of the homestay setting.
The COPI is a comprehensive oral proficiency assessment that provides reliable, valid results to help inform instruction and gauge student progress. The COPI is available in Mandarin Chinese, Modern Standard Arabic, and Spanish.
The Multimedia Rater Training Program (MRTP) is a hands-on introduction to oral proficiency assessment that teaches rating skills via CD-ROM. This computer assisted professional development program was modeled after live rater training workshops and CAL's self-instructional Rater Training Kits.
CAL surveyed public and private elementary and secondary schools across the country to identify current patterns and shifts over time in foreign language education. This report provides detailed information about the survey results and includes recommendations for increasing language capacity in the United States.
This book explores bilingual community education, specifically the educational spaces shaped and organized by American ethnolinguistic communities for their children in the multilingual city of New York.
Handbook of Heritage, Community, and Native American Languages in the United States: Research, Policy, and Educational Practice
This timely and comprehensive publication provides a state-of-the-art overview of major issues related to heritage, community, and Native American languages in the United States, providing a foundational perspective on how these languages are learned and used in a variety of contexts and outlining the importance of drawing on these languages as valuable national resources.
Evaluation and Program Design Services
CAL offers evaluation and program design services to schools, districts, and other institutions that are planning or implementing programs for language learners.
News & Events
CAL has launched supplementary World Language resources to ensure that the revised 2021 Massachusetts World Languages Curriculum Framework is actionable and inclusive for all educators.
As part of their work with the Assessment and Evaluation Language Resource Center (AELRC) at Georgetown University, researchers at the Center for Applied Linguistics (CAL) recently launched two updated resources for world language and heritage language educators.
The ACTFL Annual Convention and World Languages Expo is where language educators from around the world come to meet. This global event brings together more than 7,000 language educators from all languages, levels, and assignments.
This session presents findings from 6 educator focus groups on the needs of less common programs in writing and implementing state world language standards and a literature review on best practices for 8 specialized areas: non-alphabetic, classical, and heritage languages, ASL, elementary programs, students with disabilities, SEL, and assessment. View proposal.