Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) Volume 13. Number1.  March 2022                           Pp. 313 -329

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From Natural Translanguaging to Planned Translanguaging: Developing
Classroom Translanguaging as Pedagogy in a Private University in China

Yumei Zhang
Graduate School of the Human Sciences
Assumption University, Bangkok, Thailand
English Department
Heilongjiang International University, Harbin, China
Corresponding Author:

Andrew Jocuns
Graduate School of the Human Sciences
Assumption University, Bangkok, Thailand


Received: 11 /25/2021               Accepted:  1/19/2022                            Published:3/24/2022


Despite a large body of literature on English learning using translanguaging, such research on the role of translanguaging on English reading among Chinese private university students is minimal. The present study presented a need for teachers in an English medium instruction context to mitigate language deficiencies where the students are not able to perform in an English-only classroom. The research examined when and how translanguaging emerges in Chinese private university students’ English reading practice. Ethnographic research methods were implemented over a six-month period. Twenty-eight students and their teacher participated in this study. Data were collected through classroom observations, open-ended interviews. Translanguaging as theoretical framework and nexus analysis as analytical framework were employed to examine the real reading practice of private university students and their trajectories of the shift from natural translanguaging to planned translanguaging. The findings indicated that: a) reading using translanguaging rather than English medium instruction is typical in teaching and reading practices among private university students in China; b) although Chinese private university students as a community of low English proficiency appreciated the pedagogical translanguaging, they still needed time, space, and planned translanguaging to reconcile the tension between translanguaging and English medium instruction.
Keywords: Chinese private university students, English medium instruction, monolingual ideology,
nexus analysis, translanguaging

Cite as:  Zhang, Y., &  Jocuns, A.  (2022). From Natural Translanguaging to Planned Translanguaging: Developing Classroom Translanguaging as Pedagogy in a Private University in China
Arab World English Journal, 13 (1) 313 -329.


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Received: 11 /25/2021
Accepted: 1/19/2022
Published: 3/24/2022 

Yumei Zhang is an associate professor in English Department at Heilongjiang International University, China. Her research has focused upon nexus analysis, classroom discourse analysis, translanguaging and EFL teaching. She is now an ELT PhD student at Assumption University, Thailand. Orcid ID: 0000-0002-1802-9966