Multilingual Manchester

Multilingual Manchester is a cluster of research activities based in the School of Arts, Languages and Cultures.

Closely linked with local communities and services, these activities raise awareness of linguistic diversity in the region, as well as identifying and responding to language needs. There are numerous opportunities for students of the University to get involved with Multilingual Manchester and explore the city's rich mosaic of over 150 languages.

Diversity is an integral part of Manchester's identity, and the visible signs of a thriving, interweaving web of languages are impossible to miss. Digging beneath this surface, Multilingual Manchester aims to understand how these languages are used, the ways in which they are maintained, and both the challenges and enormous benefits that they bring to the area. To this end, the team of researchers has forged partnerships with Manchester City Council, Greater Manchester Police, Central Manchester University Hospitals, Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service, several local schools, community centres, third-sector organisations and more.

Man giving talk in front of Multilingual Manchester banner
Multilingual Manchester 2016 event.

Community-based research projects

Supported by Multilingual Manchester staff, Linguistics and English Language students can lead their own accredited, community-based research project and work directly with local authorities, businesses and the linguistically diverse public. Learning through research not only yields the most up-to-date data using pioneering methods, but also grants a unique opportunity to experience Manchester's cultural fabric first-hand.

In addition to this taught element, students from all academic and linguistic backgrounds can engage with the city's communities through Multilingual Manchester’s well-established volunteer scheme. In 2014, activities on offer include filming and editing a DVD to be used by NHS Speech Therapists; providing English Language support to parents of schoolchildren; exploring the vibrant Chinese community with guidance from a key community centre; and recording patient experience, alongside hospital interpreters, at Manchester Royal Infirmary. Participation in Multilingual Manchester activities is recognised by the Manchester Leadership Programme and the Higher Education Achievement Record. In terms of developing career skills, public and private sector employers value candidates with direct experience of working with people from diverse backgrounds and cultures.

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