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date: 21 January 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter traces the main pedagogical and political agendas that are implicit in medium of instruction (MOI) policies. It begins with an important worldwide effort to promote mother-tongue MOI: the Education for All initiative. Although this initiative has gained wide support among education scholars, MOI policies that privilege former colonial languages remain dominant in many contexts. The second section focuses on colonial and postcolonial contexts. In recent years debates about MOI in postcolonial education have focused on the spread of English MOI under globalization. The third section examines globalization, specifically with the examples of Malaysia, Hong Kong, China, and European higher education. The fourth section examines a major counterforce to English MOI: the language rights movement. Finally, the chapter ends with a discussion of explicit efforts to use MOI to reduce inequality.

Keywords: Education for All, China, higher education, Europe, Hong Kong, language rights, medium of instruction, Malaysia

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