Over the last few decades, population mobility
and movement from one country to another has resulted in linguistic and
cultural diversity being much more visible.
This increase in visibility has, for many, been seen as constituting a
positive outcome. However, this is not a
universal outcome. Recently, and partly as a result of large refugee influxes
as well as in conjunction with economic pressures on the middle class, worldwide
there has been an increase in the number of ethnocentric identity groups
believing that people who are linguistically and culturally different from
themselves constitute a negative influence, and therefore must be excluded.
Greece is an example of a country historically monolingual and monocultural,
gradually becoming more diverse because migrants came to stay in the 1990s and 2000s. Recently though, large numbers of refugees
have arrived, who unlike former migrants, do not want to stay, cannot leave and
while wanting to learn other languages, are reluctant to learn Greek, thus
adding contextual challenges.
To this end, we are currently completing
administration of adjusted versions of a) Chen and Starosta’s (2000) IS Scale,
b) Guyton and Wesche’s (2005) ME Scale and c) survey questions on perceived
values of being able to communicate in additional languages to 400
third/fourth-year teacher-education students in different geographically
situated Greek universities.
tend to be characterized by increased movement of people from their point of
origin to other places. Worldwide one notes that people are moving for a variety
of reasons, some because they seek something new and thus choose to move and do
so on their own terms. Others because they
have no other choice. In 2015, 4.7 million
people immigrated to one of the 28 EU countries while another 2.8 million EU residents
migrated out of EU states (Eurostat, 2017). The number of children from
immigrant and migrant families attending schools throughout many European
countries has increased during the last two decades. This increase has changed
classroom demographics moving them from cultural and linguistic homogeneity to
one more markedly heterogeneous (Spinthourakis & Katsillis, 2003).