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The status of English as a medium of instruction in Sub-Saharan Africa: A systematic review of Nigeria and Tanzania (2002-2023)

Tom-Lawyer, O and Thomas, M (2024) The status of English as a medium of instruction in Sub-Saharan Africa: A systematic review of Nigeria and Tanzania (2002-2023). European Journal of English Language Teaching, 9 (1). pp. 1-22. ISSN 2501-7136

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While research has considered the effectiveness of language policies on English as a Medium of Instruction (EMI) in Nigeria and Tanzania, no comparative studies of both countries currently exist. To address this gap, this paper adopted a systematic review approach. One of the principles arising from the British Council Jubal Language-inEducation Conference (2012), a key point of reference for language policy in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), states that the transition from one language to another as a medium of instruction should be a gradual process and not a sudden one; the change should take place after learners have become competent in their mother tongue and proficient in the second language. Arising from this, the aim of this study was to determine why students in Tanzania, who spend a longer time learning in their mother tongue before transiting to English (Kumar, 2015), still face significant challenges with English compared to Nigerians who follow the early transition model (NPE, 2014). The Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) approach was used to ensure a robust analysis was undertaken (Sarkis-Onofre, Catala-Lopez, Aromatris & Lockwood, 2021). The paper concludes that the challenges in the Tanzanian context are not related to the policy but to its ineffective implementation. Recommendations for Nigeria’s use of the late exit model (NLP, 2022), stress that policymakers should draw lessons from the weaknesses of the Tanzanian case and develop strategies to implement the model effectively.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: L Education > LB Theory and practice of education
P Language and Literature > PL Languages and literatures of Eastern Asia, Africa, Oceania
Divisions: Education
Publisher: Open Access Publishing Group
SWORD Depositor: A Symplectic
Date Deposited: 17 Jan 2024 14:27
Last Modified: 17 Jan 2024 14:30
DOI or ID number: 10.46827/ejel.v9i1.5165
URI: https://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/22305
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