Researching trilingualism and trilingual education in China

Anwei FENG, Robert Damian ADAMSON

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapters


The introductory chapter gives the rationale and methodology of the chapters included in this volume. All chapters are research reports that emerged from a nationwide project on trilingualism and trilingual education in China. Traditionally, research in this area of study was conducted mostly in isolation in different minority regions or prefectures in the country. There was no known investigation done for gaining a comprehensive, comparable, and critical understanding of the contemporary situation of languages in use and language provision for indigenous minority groups. This chapter, firstly, provides the underpinning ideology and rationale for the nationwide project conducted through concerted efforts of research teams from key minority regions or prefectures and Guangdong Province which provides a particularly interesting case study. It then presents a detailed account of the design of the research, from the establishment of the nationwide network, the formulation of research questions, the methodology and methods used, the designing of research tools, to the organisation of the volume. The strategies used to deal with all these are clearly crucial from the point of view of comparability, validity and trustworthiness of research findings. Finally, the chapter lists the target audience of the volume, including policy makers, teachers and researchers in minority education. Copyright © 2015 Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTrilingualism in education in China: Models and challenges
EditorsAnwei FENG, Bob ADAMSON
Place of PublicationDordrecht
ISBN (Electronic)9789401793520
ISBN (Print)9789401793513
Publication statusPublished - 2015


Feng, A., & Adamson, B. (2015). Researching trilingualism and trilingual education in China. In A. Feng, & B. Adamson (Eds.), Trilingualism in education in China: Models and challenges (pp. 1-21). Dordrecht: Springer.


  • China’s ethnic minority groups
  • Sanyu Jiantong (mastery of three languages)
  • Sanyu Jiaoyu (trilingual education)
  • Policy making
  • Ethno-linguistic vitality
  • Additive trilingualism
  • Empowerment
  • Multiple case studies
  • Mixed methodology
  • Target audience


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