Taalvaardigheid, attitudes en motivatie van Nederlandstalige en Franstalige leerlingen in het Nederlandstalig onderwijs in Brussel



In Brussels, parents can freely choose to enrol their children in either Dutch
or French language schools. In many cases, and increasingly so, Francophone
parents prefer the Durch language education system which they believe will
provide their children a bilingual learning experience. This influx of predominantly
French-speaking, as well as other non-Dutch-speaking pupils, has
resulted in a linguistically diverse, rather than a predominantly Dutch-speaking
pupil population in Dutch language schools in Brussels. As a consequence,
a form of non-structured immersion education has materialized,
which tends to be perceived as problematic and even detrimental to the language
learning process.
Earlier cross-sectional research into the language proficiency, attitudes and
motivations of Dutch and French-speaking pupils in Dutch language schools
in Brussels (Housen, Mettewie & Pierrard 2004; Mettewie, 2004), has shown
that Dutch-speaking pupils have similar language proficiency levels, as well as
attitudes and motivations, as their Flemish peers. It further demonstrated that
the Dutch language or L2 proficiency of the French-speaking pupils equals
the Dutch-speaking pupils' Dutch or L1 (1st language) proficiency in most
domains of language proficiency. These French-speaking pupils in addition
displayed more positive attitudes and srronger motivation towards the L2 (2nd
language) learning process.
The current longitudinal research followed up on two cohorts of Dutch
and French-speaking pupils during three consecutive school years (2001,
2002 and 2003), in order to study the long-term development of their language
proficiencies, as well as their social-psychological orientation towards
French and Dutch. It also investigated the relationship between both these
latent constructs. The ultimate goal of this research is to determine to what
extent such a form of non-structured immersion education leads to bilingual
proficiency, and how attitudes and motivation relate to this process in the
long term.