"My route to the MA Multilingualism, Linguistics and Education (MLE) was quite meandering in many ways. My background had been in English Literature and I had spent the last few years teaching in a South London primary school, increasingly within the field of English as an Additional Language (EAL).
I was itching to start delving into research and theory that I could apply to my evolving practice as a teacher. I had looked around at many MAs which offered a straight-up 'teaching practice' and supporting EAL learners in the school or EAL in practice. What caught my eye about the MA MLE was the breadth of what you can cover and its interdisciplinary and inter-departmental approach.
It was a place where I could develop my knowledge in sociolinguistics (an area I’d always wished I'd gone down in my first degree) as well as look, through an international lens, at multilingual education systems and practices. This international dimension was one of the great positives about the course: getting to compare and contrast different educational systems across the globe (and not just on a Western axis of Europe, USA and Australia), as well as how multilingual the student body was: we would share first-hand experiences of education from places as diverse as China, India, Turkey and Chile. In many of the modules we did not shy away from vital questions of teacher and student reflexivity in relation to race, gender and class, which was also something that seemed lacking from more narrow and 'neutral' (of course there is no such thing) looking MAs I researched.
I also enjoyed how much I was able to delve into my arts-based education interests, as I was able to get involved with the Education department's Multilingual Digital Storytelling Global project. I felt my voice and ideas were really valued in this project.
Through a module called Children’s Literature and Cultural Diversity, I was also able to explore how to use filmmaking and creative writing can be used effectively for critical pedagogy in the classroom.
After two years researching and writing about multilingualism in mainstream education contexts, I have now decided it is time to develop my own multilingualism and am currently living and teaching in Barcelona. I can already feel the benefit that the experiences and research and I envisage it will continue to have a huge impact on the people, spaces and projects I will encounter over here."