Below is a list of three current trends in research on CLA pedagogy.
These are discussed further in Chapter 10 of Shapiro’s forthcoming book,
Cultivating Critical Language Awareness in the Writing Classroom

Trend 1: Linking CLA to critical media literacy

Some recent case studies of CLA pedagogy in English language arts/literacy classrooms have focused on linking CLA to critical media literacy. Three particularly prominent examples are: 

  • Baker-Bell, A. (2020). ” We Been Knowin”: Toward an Antiracist Language & Literacy Education. Journal of Language and Literacy Education, 16(1), n1. [available here]
  • Janks, H. (2018). Texts, identities, and ethics: Critical literacy in a post‐truth world. Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy, 62(1), 95-99. [available here]
  • Janks, H., Dixon, K., Ferreira, A., Granville, S., & Newfield, D. (2013). Doing critical literacy: Texts and activities for students and teachers. Routledge. [more info here and excerpt here]

Trend 2: Mapping students' development of CLA

A number of researchers are adapting developmental frameworks from multicultural education  (e.g., Nieto, 2006; 2017) in order to map out students’ trajectories as learners of CLA, including measuring shifts in linguistic attitudes, biases, and behaviors. Three examples of this work are:

  • Endo, R. (2015). From unconscious deficit views to affirmation of linguistic varieties in the classroom: White preservice teachers on building critical self-awareness about linguicism’s causes and consequences. Multicultural Perspectives17(4), 207-214.

  • Godley, A. J., & Reaser, J. (2018). Critical Language Pedagogy: Interrogating Language, Dialects, and Power in Teacher Education. Peter Lang.

  •  Shi, L., & Rolstad, K. (2020). “A good start”: A new approach to gauging preservice teachers’ critical language awareness. Journal of Language, Identity & Education, 1-15

Trend 3: Infusing CLA into in world language curricula and instruction

Researchers in world language instruction are doing exciting work in CLA curriculum development and assessment. Several Spanish language scholar-practitioners have considered how CLA pedagogy can be used to make language courses and programs more inclusive of heritage learners. Here are three examples:

  • Beaudrie, S., Amezcua, A., & Loza, S. (2019). Critical language awareness for the heritage context: Development and validation of a measurement questionnaire. Language Testing, 36(4), 573-594.
    [DOI here.]

  • Gasca Jiménez, L., & Adrada-Rafael, S. (2021). Understanding heritage language learners’ critical language awareness (CLA) in mixed language programs. Languages6(1), 37. [Available here]

  • Holguín Mendoza, C. (2018). Critical language awareness (CLA) for Spanish heritage language programs: Implementing a complete curriculum. International Multilingual Research Journal12(2), 65-79. [Available here]

    **Also check out this AAAL webinar on CLA in Spanish instruction, and Holguín Mendoza’s online
    resources, including co-authored, CLA-informed “Can Do” statements.                                                                     

    CLA pedagogy is also being used in curriculum and instruction for other world languages. Below are two examples: 

  • [French] Blyth, C., & Dalola, A. (2016). Translingualism as an open educational language practice: Raising critical language awareness on Facebook. Alsic. Apprentissage des Langues et Systèmes d’Information et de Communication19(1). [open access- Available here]
  • [Chinese bilingual education]: Chang, S., Torres-Guzmán, M. E., & Waring, H. Z. (2020). Experiencing critical language awareness as a collective struggle: Methodological innovations in language awareness workshops. The Language Learning Journal, 48(3),
    356–369. [DOI here]

For more case studies of CLA pedagogy, check out my curated list of Readings for Teachers