Bilingual Child Migrants in a Multilingual Europe

COST New Speakers Workshop

Location: Faculty of Modern Languages, University of Warsaw, Poland 

Dates: 16-17 November 2016

Local Organiser: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 



Although European societies are becoming increasingly multilingual due to migration, data on the developmental trajectories of bilingual children are still scarce. We also know little about the socio-economic factors and social attitudes shaping language use in “new speaker” contexts.

The two-day workshop will focus on bilingual children from migrant families. In particular, it will be devoted to an examination of the bilingual child’s language development in the areas of phonology, lexis, morpho-syntax and discourse. We will also discuss the linguistic identities of migrant families and their impact on literacy transmission practices in these families across Europe.

The event will bring together researchers from several countries (Cyprus, Germany, Great Britain, Israel, Poland, Sweden), but a strong emphasis will be placed on the data gathered from children of Polish migrants to the UK. We will present the research outcomes of two large complementary projects carried out at the University of Warsaw: BI-SLI-PL Cognitive and language development of Polish bilingual children at the school entrance age - risks and opportunities (carried out at the Faculty of Psychology, 2010-2015) and WLRB Phonological and Morpho-syntactic Features of Language and Discourse of Polish Children Raised Bilingually in Migrant Communities in Great Britain (carried out at the Faculty of Modern Languages, 2014-2017).

The confirmed keynote presenters (involved in COST Action IS0804 and IS1306) are:

  • Prof. Shula Chiat (City, the University of London), UK
  • Prof. Natalia Gagarina (Humboldt University and ZAS, Berlin), Germany
  • Prof. Ewa Haman (University of Warsaw), Poland
  • Prof. Theodoros Marinis (University of Reading), UK
  • Dr Zofia Wodniecka (Jagiellonian University), Poland