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Across Three Languages: The Translingualism of Moroccan Basic Writers

November 19 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

In this study, we report findings from the analysis of short essays written by 113 Moroccan students who are literate in three languages: Standard Arabic, French, and English. Data were collected in two major public universities in Morocco from students enrolled in the first semester of their studies. Three equivalent prompts in each language were developed in which students were asked to make and defend a choice between two alternatives (one per essay): to be famous or rich, to live in the city or the country, or to learn from books or the internet. The essays were scored by Moroccan teachers fluent in all three languages and each essay was then coded by two equally trilingual Moroccan graduate students for evidence of translinguistic sharing across the three essays. The students’ translingual sharing was multidirectional. Most important, the greater the amount of translinguistic sharing writers used, the higher their essays were rated. These findings suggest that translingualism is not a sign of weakness but of strength in basic writers. In closing, pedagogical and theoretical implications of these findings are discussed.


November 19
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm