Towards a Language Policy on Chinese as an Alternative Language in Taiwan, the Republic of China.
The present paper examines the current policy of Taiwan, the Republic of China for Chinese as a second language, points out a number of limitations and makes several suggestions on the theoretical/principle level as well as on the concrete policy level. Specifically, we believe that a culturally responsive policy should target all learners/users whose current dominant language is not Chinese but who have the need to make Chinese their dominant language for daily use. The policy should focus on the diverse cultural contents that represent the broad Chinese community and encourage the learning and use of different varieties of Chinese. The goal of the policy is to take the Chinese cultures abroad and bring the Chinese learners in. The specific tasks include writing the National Policy for Promoting Chinese as an Alternative Language (CAL) in the International Community, with the goals of making Chinese the essential vehicle and media of information and knowledge in the future and of making Chinese a language of valuable possession. To achieve the goals, the government need to formulate the educational objectives of CAL that are in line with the trend of international language education, to enrich the contents of the Chinese language with respect to diversity, variability, and comprehensiveness, to prepare a task force with diverse talents and expertise, and to develop tests of CAL that meet the educational objectives and can support the learning of CAL.
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