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La Grande Illusion : why Scottish further education has failed to grasp the potential of modern languages

Doughty, Hannelore (2011) La Grande Illusion : why Scottish further education has failed to grasp the potential of modern languages. Scottish Languages Review (23). pp. 7-14.

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Abstract

The most recently available data from the Scottish Qualifications Authority show that modern language provision in the Scottish further education sector is on the verge of a total collapse. Building on previous research by Doughty (2005) and Bourdieu’s concept of habitus this article shows how the self-perpetuating belief that ‘English is enough’ has unintentionally affected data that are used to inform the content of vocational qualifications. The taken-for-granted assumptions underlying the data collection methods are challenged and some alternative conceptualisations are proposed regarding the role of modern languages in vocational education and society.