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Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (Autonomous University of Barcelona)

Oralpha: Literacy for new citizens, a course for trainers

Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (Autonomous University of Barcelona) via Coursera


You are interested in welcoming processes of migrants and refugees? You want to dedicate yourself to teaching lamguage and literacy? The objective of this course is to get to know the simultaneous process of literacy and language learning in the host society for migrated young people and adults.
The linguistic integration is key for integration in the society. This course offers insight into international migration today and the real linguistic needs of migrated people in the countries of arrival. Furthermore, throughout the course you can learn about teaching methods and tools in language learning and literacy. The focus is on oral competencies, and processes starting from the students’ needs and difficulties them and the teaching staff are facing, implementing hands on experience and providing practical solutions supporting your class.


  • Oralpha: Literacy for new citizens, a course for trainers
    • The aim of this course is to learn about international migration and the experiences of immigrants in the receiving societies, as well as to train trainers to guide them in simultaneous processes of language and literacy learning, as an essential need for social integration in the host society.
  • Human mobility: Migration and integration in Europe
    • This module provides a general overview of international migration and social integration in 21st century Europe and the essential role of languages in it. Topics covered:
      a) Migration flows, regions and types.
      b) Rights, regulations and migrants’ profiles.
      c) Super-diversity, cities and refugees in Europe.
      a) Reception systems for newly arrived migrants and asylum seekers and language provisions.
      b) Immigrants’ experiences, interactions and language learning.
      a) Integration models alongside history, with a particular focus on the intercultural approach.
      b) Intersectionality, belonging and bordering .
  • Literacy to new citizens: Students & teachers
    • This module aims at providing a general overview of the students’ and teachers’ profile. Topics covered:
      1. EXPECTATIONS AND NEEDS from students in relation to integration (i.e. staying or leaving the country; working; studying) and language.
      2. PLURILINGUAL COMPETENCE (which are the students’ communicative practices? Which languages they already use? In which contexts? To reflect on key concepts to describe communicative competence of migrant and refugee students (Plurilingualism, translanguaging, superdiversity…)
      3. STUDENTS’ BARRIERS to access language and education rights beyond classroom methodology. For example: enough number of courses; gender-related lack of ”awareness”/discrimination, system knowledge barriers; legal status; gaps in the educational system; policies to discourage to remain, mobility issues, linguistic diversity lack of awareness (e.g. the role of literacy in mother tongue).
      4. TEACHERS’ PROFILES: expectations, working conditions, ideologies, training, expertise… in relation to ORALPHA methodology and NEEDS of training.
      5. TEACHING COMPETENCIES: (i.e. adaptation skills, how to overcome stereotypes; gender issues; to value previous language
  • Literacy methods: theory and practice
    • This module aims at providing a general overview of the theoretical basis that is beyond L2 literacy classes. Topics covered:
      1. L2 THEORY on second languages teaching and the specificities of low educational background students.
      2. LITERACY THEORY, main theories of literacy teaching and the specificities of L2 teaching to people with a mother tongue that differs from the host language.
      3. WAYS OF LEARNING, illiterate people ways of learning and ways to develop reading and writing skills.
      4. ORAL SKILLS the importance of oral skills development in the L2 literacy class; specifics mechanisms to promote the orality in L2 literacy lessons
      5. GROUP DYNAMICS, the importance of emotions and socialization in L2 literacy class; specifics mechanisms to promote group cohesion, motivation, self confidence, etc. In L2 literacy lessons.
      6. INTERCULTURAL COMPETENCES L2, the importance of introducing intercultural approach (students, teachers and materials).

Taught by

Rosario Reyes Izquierdo, Guiomar Gude Romero, Marta Vilar, Silvia Carrasco, Montse Ros Serra, Mar Montoya Gómez, Laia Narciso Pedro and Marieke Piepenburg

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