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Chinese expertise comes to Cardiff

17/02/2009

Dr Qi Yan and Dr Tim Jilg

Dr Qi Yan to share techniques to help improve Welsh language learning

Unique methods of teaching English to the Chinese will be shared with staff and students at the School and the Welsh for Adults Centre, as part of a joint research project.

Dr Qi Yan from Nanjing University in China will spend the next three months in the School where she will work with staff and students to experiment with specific techniques for language learning brought from China to inform new approaches to the teaching of Welsh.

Based on the memorisation of phrases, sentences and texts - collectively referred to as ‘formulaic language’, the techniques are known to promote fluency and accuracy. In particular, Dr Qi Yan will investigate whether these methods can help with the complexities of ‘front mutation’- where words change their initial sound in response to the grammatical or
phonological environment.

Professor Alison Wray, School of English, Communication and Philosophy, who is working with the School of Welsh on this specific project, will travel to Beijing and Nanjing in the next phase of the project said:

“We are delighted to welcome Dr Qi Yan to the University as part of this unique research project. Learners of Welsh and their tutors will hopefully benefit from this research, as we explore opportunities for using Chinese techniques in teaching and learning.”

Dr Qi’s visit follows a two-week research visit to Nanjing by Dr Tim Jilg where he observed classes and conducted experiments with Chinese learners of English.