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Title: Social meanings of language policy and practices : a critical, linguistic ethnographic study of four schools in Pakistan
Author: Ali Khan, Muhammad
Awarding Body: Lancaster University
Current Institution: Lancaster University
Date of Award: 2012
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In this thesis, I present a study in which I investigate language-in-education policy and practices in four schools in Pakistan: School (A) and (B) are both fee-charging private English-medium schools, located in Karachi, with a wide margin between their fee structure. School (C) is a no-tuition-fee, public sector Urdu-medium school, located in Quetta, north-west of Pakistan, and School (D) is also a no-tuition-fee Urdu-medium religious school in Karachi, locally known as a Dini Madrassah. The study aimed to address the following over-arching research questions: 1) What is the relationship between the language-in-education policy of Pakistan and the everyday language practices found in its schools? '2) How do pupils, teachers and parents become socialized into the language practices of a school, in the classrooms, at school functions and in the social spaces in the school? 3) How are the languages of pupils, teachers and parents valued/legitimized or constrained by the schools' overt and covert language practices? 4) Why is a particular discursive practice legitimized in some schools but not in others? Following the critical interpretive tradition of research on multilingual classroom discourse (Martin-Jones and Heller, 1996; Heller & Martin-Jones, 2001), I combined methods and perspectives mainly from post-structuralist theory (Bourdieu, 1991), critical ethnographic sociolinguistics (Heller, 2011), and sociolinguistics (Bakhtin, 1986; Gumperz, 1982). I gathered data using a number of different methods, mainly: observation, audio-recording, note-taking, interviews, photography and the use of a questionnaire. The findings of the study suggest that there is a mismatch between the language practices observed in these schools and language policy at the government level. The language practices of the research participants are more complex than they are assumed to be at the governmental policy level and in findings of survey-based research on language-in-education in Pakistan.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available