Official launch of the first MA in Language Planning in Europe at NUI Galway

Monday, 28 May 2007

Dr. Iognáid Ó Muircheartaigh, President of NUI Galway today launched an MA in Language Planning, the first MA of its kind in Europe. Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, NUI Galway's pioneering Irish Language college, which provides third-level education through the medium of Irish, developed this innovative and pioneering programme in the field of language planning.

The MA programme is offered as a one-year full-time or a two-year part-time taught postgraduate degree course from September 2007. Dr. Conchúr Ó Giollagáin, Director of the Course, Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge said "this is a very interesting and challenging course and primarily concentrates on the development of the professional, academic and analytical requirements for strategic language planning in various aspects of life. It has been designed to provide opportunities for professional and academic development for both recent graduates and for practitioners already working in a professional capacity in a language planning context or in a related sector."

Dr O Giollagain added, "This is the first third level course in this discipline in Ireland or indeed in Europe and the Acadamh is the first institution in Europe to offer such a course".

The MA programme researches and examines the various aspects of strategic language planning required by a language community to ensure their community is sustainable. The course will cover every aspect of language planning, including linguistic theories and sociolinguistics, language planning as a process, organisational function, community development and language discourse. The course will enable participants to use analyses and strategy to implement effective language planning in their own areas.

"This is a very important step. Up to 90% of the world's languages could be extinct before the end of this century", according to Seosamh Mac Donnacha, Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge's Academic Co-ordinator. "Specific cultures cannot be protected without protecting their own unique languages. The new MA is being provided to develop language planning in professional, training and academic areas and to help postgraduate students and professionals analyse and understand the language requirements of strategic planning".

Applications for this course are being accepted until the 22 June, 2007. For more information contact Bríd Seoige, Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge, NUI Galway on 091 495302 or email brid.seoige@oegaillimh.ie

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