Jessica Mueller

(University of Hamburg/University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf (UKE))

Languages of Instruction: English as a Lingua Franca in the Multilingual University

To date, the use of English as a lingua franca in academic contexts has been relatively well documented. However, previous studies have often focused on a narrow perspective of English as the first foreign language learned by native speakers of a particular nationally defined language. Through an initial pilot study, we aimed to examine how and to what degree the linguistic repertoire of monolingually raised and multilingually raised students and instructors influences English as a lingua franca. In light of the fact that the metalinguistic competencies of multilingual speakers of English have been largely neglected in the research thus far, these competencies have been placed in the foreground of the current study. In the first round of data collection, information about the multilingual resources of 1454 students and 341 instructors of the University of Hamburg has been gathered with the help of an online questionnaire. This questionnaire included questions related to participants’ individual linguistic biographies and language use in various situations at the University as well as in their private lives. In addition, data were collected on participants’ attitudes and motivation regarding English as a lingua franca, multilingualism and German as a foreign language.