Who are we?
We are a group of researchers at the University of Edinburgh who work on language development and bilingualism in children and adults.
Director: Professor Antonella Sorace
What can we do?
We want to bridge the gap between researchers and the community (bilingual families, educators, and policy makers) in order to enable more and more children to benefit from bilingualism.
What service do we provide?
Do you have a bilingual household and do you want to raise your child bilingual but you are not sure how to do this? Do you worry about how bilingualism might affect your child's school achievement? Do you want to know more about how the mind of a bilingual child works?
If you need information or advice on these or other issues, you can either consult the resources on this website or you can email us on email@example.com. Note that we can advise only on typical bilingual language development: we are not qualified to deal with medical or psychological conditions of any kind. If you are concerned about your child's physical and mental well-being, please consult appropriate experts.
Talks for Parents, Teachers and Educators
We are happy to come to schools, nurseries and other venues to give accessible and informative talks about bilingualism.
We offer information sessions and consultancies to international organisations and we are also ready to engage with policy makers in an advisory role and contribute to reports and consultations concerned with the promotion of bilingualism and multilingualism in the Scottish society.
What are the long-term aims of our service?
Our primary aim is to disseminate accurate information about bilingualism among bilingual families and educators.
In the longer term, we would like to:
- Raise awareness among bilingual families, educators and policy makers of the facts and advantages of bilingualism.
- Contribute to the establishment of communication channels and resources for the encouragement of bilingualism in Scotland.
- Contribute to shaping public language strategies in Scotland to include specific policies for promoting bilingualism from early childhood.
- Identify knowledge gaps where dissemination of research on bilingualism is especially needed.
Scotland As A Multilingual Society
Scotland is a multilingual country where, according to a recent survey, at least 106 different languages are spoken. In a population of over 5 million, this wide range of languages holds significant potential for cultural diversity, economic opportunity, and enriched education. However, are we prepared to celebrate linguistic and cultural diversity?
In many parts of the world it is common for children to be exposed to two or even more languages right from birth, but bilingualism is a relatively new phenomenon in most of Europe. As a consequence, growing up with more than one language is often regarded as 'special' and even 'dangerous' for a child's development, and bilingualism is still surrounded by negative beliefs and misunderstandings. This is largely due to lack of information. We are here to help inform the public about the benefits of bilingualism and encourage families, educators, and policy makers in supporting children's development of multiple languages.