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Breaking the Language Barriers: Free Movement and Language Learning in the European Community

  • Guido ReverditoEmail author
  • Sarah K. St. John
Chapter

Abstract

A founding principle of the European Community has been the free circulation of people. This important feature brought about a new migration phenomenon that required pragmatic responses, namely the need for language learning and teaching. With the European Community’s development, the need for language learning continued to gain momentum, and between 1989 and 1996, the Council of Europe (COE) developed the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages: Learning, Teaching and Assessment (CEFR) as part of a larger project ‘Language Learning for European Citizenship’. This chapter explores the significance of language learning for the European Community and details the CEFR, which provides a common basis for developing language syllabi, curriculum guidelines, examinations, textbooks and so on across Europe, and defines six levels of language proficiency, the use of which the COE recommended in a Resolution in November 2001.

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Smith CollegeNorthamptonUSA
  2. 2.School of EducationUniversity of GlasgowGlasgowUK
  3. 3.European University InstituteFlorenceItaly

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