Monthly Archives: November 2012

What is CLIL?

CLIL stands for Content and Language Integrated Learning. The term is now used widely in Australia to describe the method of learning curriculum content (eg. science, maths, history, geography etc) via the medium of a language other than English. CLIL is often interchanged or linked to the term immersion.

CLIL is a method of language learning that is markedly different from LOTE (now referred to as Languages). One of the distinct advantages of CLIL programs is that students engage with a diverse range of authentic texts (eg. newspaper articles, films,television, radio etc ) from the target culture (eg. Taiwan, Italy or Germany). This gives them insights into cultures beyond Australia. It also provides them with a working knowledge of the types of texts their fellow students in these cultures are reading, watching or listening. This helps them to communicate with their peers down the track; via social media or face-to-face through student exchange programs.

At the 2012 MLTAV conference “Languages Without Borders” a number of sessions focus on CLIL. Two are listed here:

Viviana Golding & Kylie Farmer: CLIL in Action: The Impact of CLIL

Margaret Gearon: The potential for introducing CLIL in Victorian Schools (handout not available)

The 2012 DEECD publication, Languages 2025, mentions CLIL in the context of increasing Victorian student numbers in language studies (p 11):

“Schools and other education and training partners will need to:
– engage and use speakers of languages in their schools, in tertiary institutions, in the broader community and across the world to provide more time for languages learning and opportunities for students to use the language they are learning in real life situations;
– implement approaches, such as bilingual, immersion and content and language integrated learning (CLIL) to provide authentic language learning content and contexts”


Department for Education and Early Childhood Development (2012) Languages 2025 Draft plan for implementing the Victorian Government‟s Vision for Languages Education Communications Division for the Languages, EAL and Multicultural Strategy Division Melbourne

Modern Language Teachers’ Association Victoria Conference Workshops website viewed on November 16 2012

Smala, S & Sutherland, K (2011) A Lived Curriculum In Two Languages, Curriculum Perspectives, 31, 3.


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