Monthly Archives: October 2019

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Paul Simon Study Abroad Act Reintroduced to House

Representatives Cheri Bustos (IL-17) and John Katko (NY-24) recently reintroduced the bipartisan Senator Paul Simon Study Abroad Program Act. The bill would establish a competitive grant program, run by the Department of Education, for colleges and universities to expand study abroad opportunities for undergraduate students. It is named after the late Illinois senator Paul Simon,…

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Hungary Amends Language Requirements

From 2020, high school graduates in Hungary are required to possess at least one upper-intermediate language certificate or a higher-level Hungarian Matura from one language to be able to meet new university admission standards. Until now, the system worked slightly differently—university students had been expected to submit their language certificates in order to be able…

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New Unified Inuktut Writing System Approved

The national Inuit organization of Canada has decided on a new standard of writing for a unified Inkutut writing system. The system is called Inuktut Qaliujaaqpait and uses Roman orthography (the alphabet used in English) rather than syllabics. Syllabics look like rows of circles, squares and triangles. The written language will be able to be…

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Spanish through Music & Friendship in Tijuana

Univoice Corporation, the developer of a language-learning platform that teaches languages exclusively through music, has started its first learning class in Tijuana, Mexico. This inaugural class focuses on teaching Spanish to English speakers in an immersive, collaborative, and fun environment. The free classes began in August at Espacio Migrante, a cultural center and shelter for…

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UN Combats False Claims on Cantonese

Multiple recent posts on Facebook and Twitter that claim that the United Nations (UN) has officially defined Cantonese as a language and not a dialect and that it is not recognized as one of the six “leading languages in daily use” has turned out to be false. The UN told AFP Fact check that the…

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What Assembly Bill 5 Means for Linguists

On Sept 18th, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed Assembly Bill 5 (CA AB 5) into law which will take effect in January. The new California state law reclassifies a large number of independent contractors as employees, making them entitled to labor protections, such as minimum wage and unemployment benefits. While AB 5 was written with…

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Healthcare Hurdles for Limited English Proficient Patients

People whose first language is not English deal with additional hurdles to their healthcare. For non-native English speakers, talking to a doctor or dentist can mean listening to unfamiliar medical terms that may be difficult to understand. Trained medical interpreters can bridge the gap between patients, doctors, nurses, and hospital staff. Often, unqualified but well-intentioned…