The role of the target language in social immersion of haitian immigrants in chile and educators’ beliefs about its teaching and learning



Palabras clave:

immigrant students, public school, socio-cultural immersion, Spanish as an additional language


Chile has received massive waves of immigration in a relatively short time, notably from Haiti. These migratory movements have highlighted the lack of preparation of Chilean public schools to incorporate young people from Haiti, or other non-Spanish-speaking students, into the educational system. The creation of public policies to address the teaching of Spanish as an additional language in school would help these adolescents achieve a higher level of academic and socio-cultural integration; however, there is resistance among teachers, administrators, and education scholars on this point. In this article, we aim to show how these resistances stem from a lack of consideration regarding what the teaching and learning of an additional language truly implies.

Biografía del autor/a

Gloria Toledo, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile

Gloria Macarena Toledo Vega is an Associate Professor at the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile (PUC). She holds a PhD in Philology from the University of Valladolid (2012). Since 1998 she has been working as a Spanish/L2 teacher for the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile (PUC), the Stanford University Study Center in Chile, and the University of British Columbia, Canada. She teaches classes in the areas of Pragmatics and Applied Linguistics and is head of the SFL program and the Specialization Diploma in SFL PUC program. Her research has to do with the development of Spanish among Haitian immigrants in Chile and the relationship between the acquisition and development of additional languages and socio-cultural immersion, and she is the author of several articles on this topic. She has been awarded research funding at the national level and has collaborated with organisations such as the Jesuit Service for Migrants and Spanish schools for immigrants within Chile.

Andrea Lizasoain, Universidad Austral de Chile

Andrea Lizasoain has a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature and Linguistics from the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile (UC). She obtained her Master's degree in Acquisition of English and Intercultural Communication from the Autonomous University of Barcelona and her PhD in Linguistics from the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile. She is Assistant Professor at the Institute of Linguistics and Literature of the Austral University of Chile, where she teaches subjects related to English as a foreign language, educational linguistics, and translation. Her current lines of research are related to the analysis of pedagogical and linguistic discourse applied to the teaching of foreign languages. 


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