Is English really the culprit? Investigating the content versus language distinction

Ewa Clayton


The language issue is a pressing one in tertiary education. Some English L2 university students
perceive the language barrier to be a serious hindrance on the path to academic success and
similar sentiments are voiced by lecturers and tutors. This research investigates the content vs
language dichotomy and - in answering the question whether more emphasis should be put on
language skills or on reiriforcing subject specific knowledge - it supports the view that the
problem appears to be more content related
Die taa/kwessie in tersiere onderwys is van dringende belang. Party Engelssprekende T2-
universiteitstudente beskou die taalgrens as 'n ernstige versperring onderweg na akademiese
sukses, en soortgelyke standpunte word deur dosente en tutors geopper. Hierdie navorsing
ondersoek die tweespalt tussen inhoud en taal en, in die beantwoording van die vraag of
taalvaardigheid bo die verwerwing van vakspesifieke kennis beklemtoon moet word of
andersom, onderskryf dit die standpunt dat die probleem. waarskynlik vera/ inhoudverwant is.

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ISSN 2224-0012 (online); ISSN 0259-2312 (print)

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