Language study boost

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 10 December, 1997, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 10 December, 1997, 12:00am

Funds totalling $8.7 million have been approved for research into language projects.

Director of Education Helen Yu Lai Ching-ping, who also is Trustee of the Language Fund, approved money for the first batch of 15 projects.

Two of the projects recommended address the committee's priority research tenders.

One involves studying the application of computer software to enhance Chinese-language learning.

The other will investigate the development of phonological awareness (as related to reading and spelling competence) in primary students learning English.

Of the nine other Chinese projects approved, seven are targeted at improving primary language education, which is the vetting priority of the SCOLAR committee involved in choosing recipients.

Most of the English projects approved are aimed at enhancing language ability at the pre-primary and primary levels. These include the production of an English-language television series, and the development of an English teaching package for primary schools.

'All these projects meet the criteria set by the Standing Committee on Language Education and Research [SCOLAR] for allocation of the Language Fund,' Mrs Yu said.

'They should be immensely helpful in raising standards of our students in Chinese and English.' The fund supports 125 projects involving grants of $149 million.