Tuesday, July 22, 2014

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U.Va. To Host Chinese Language Training Program for Teachers

A University of Virginia-based training program for middle- and high-school Chinese language teachers will continue this summer, thanks to a $99,370 federal grant.

The STARTALK Chinese Teacher Academy is coordinated by Miao-fen Tseng, an expert in second language acquisition and teacher education who teaches in the East Asian Languages and Cultures department in U.Va.’s College of Arts & Sciences. The program has been based at the University since 2010.

The three-week program recruits 15 teachers of Mandarin Chinese from around the country for intensive language instruction training. The teachers earn up to five hours of graduate credit, and are able to immediately apply what they learn in the classroom by teaching 24 area high school students who participate in the program.

The federal STARTALK program funds similar training opportunities across the country to boost acquisition of languages deemed critical to the national interest. Mandarin Chinese has been on that list since 2006 and the first Chinese STARTALK programs began in 2007.

The Chinese Teacher Academy began at Virginia Commonwealth University and moved to U.Va. in 2010. During the program, which runs from June 17 through July 5, participating teachers stay in a nearby hotel and take classes on Grounds. Volunteer high school students from the greater Central Virginia area attend during the day from June 24 through July 3.

Information about participating in the 2013 program will be posted here.

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