Research

The goal of this site is to provide a central location for a collection of references, proficiency assessments, questionnaires, and research tools that may be utilized for assessing or conducting research on heritage speakers/learners' language skills. We hope that researchers, teachers, and program administrators will both use and contribute to this site, creating a community that exchanges ideas on current issues involving heritage languages and promotes collaboration and further study of this topic.

Go to tools »

Although heritage languages have been an area of interest for American linguistics for a number of years, Heritage English -- a distinctly non-American phenomenon -- has not received enough attention. Heritage English is the English spoken by second-generation English speakers who grew up hearing it but who are dominant in a different language. Studies of Heritage English are aimed at identifying the main areas of syntactic, morphological, and lexical differences between this variety of English and English spoken by fully competent speakers. With this information, educators can work towards English language curricula that match the needs of these heritage speakers; linguists can move forward in better understanding grammar as viewed through the prism of a well-studied language; and cultural scholars can take another look at the role of language in bicultural development. In order to facilitate research in these areas, a collection of data on Heritage English that includes data sets from Israel and France is now available online.