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Promoting the take-up of languages and student mobility


Signing of the French and Mandarin Bespoke Language Programme

We are pleased to announce the signing of the French and Mandarin Bespoke Language Programme, which is a collaborative initiative involving Routes into Languages, Institut Francais and Confucius Institute Headquarters (Hanban) UK Office. The signing ceremony, which took place at the French Embassy in London, was attended by Laurent Batut, Deputy Head of the Institut Francais in the UK, Yves Letournel, French Language Attaché, Institut Francais in the UK, Mr Tongdu Chen, Director of Hanban UK, Christina Zhang, Senior Manager, Marketing, Hanban UK, Professor Mike Kelly, Programme Director of Routes into Languages, Dr Neil Hughes, Co-Director of Routes into Languages (East Midlands), University of Nottingham.
The French and Mandarin Bespoke Language programme is based on a model developed at Nottingham Trent University and is aimed at students taking French AS and A level at schools located in economically and socially disadvantaged areas. The initiative grew out of the recognition by all of the partners involved that sustainable relationships with schools must be developed if the goal of widening participation in languages is to be achieved. The Routes into Languages, Institut Francais and Confucius Institute Headquarters (Hanban) UK Office are committed to improving students' French language skills, increasing their knowledge and understanding of French society and culture and introducing them to Chinese language and culture via an exciting programme of activities taking place at different times in the school year. Activities will include French master classes and Chinese taster classes delivered by native speakers as well as trips to Institut Francais and Confucius Institutes in London. There will also be visits to local university campuses to raise students' awareness of the importance of learning modern foreign languages within an increasingly globalised economy and the opportunities universities provide for students to continue with language studies after A levels.
A pilot project will be taking place in the East Midlands beginning in February with 3 schools already committed to taking part: The Joseph Whitaker School, Ashfield School and Ormiston Sandwell Community Academy. If you would like more information about the Bespoke Programme or would like your school to take part in the East Midlands pilot, please contact:

YouTube Contest - Win a free language holiday and have fun with the language of your choice


LanguageLearningPortal will help you to find the perfect language course for you! Therefore, we are very curious to understand which language you would like to learn or may be improve..?

By participating in our contest, you get the opportunity to create a video, upload it on YouTube and tell the whole world which language you would like to learn. The best part is..: You have the chance to win a free language holiday!

What do you need to do?

  1. Create and upload a video on YouTube where you explain which language you would like to learn or improve and why - maximum video length is one minute!
  2. Mention in the description of your video
  3. Submit your YouTube video link to join the contest
  4. Share the video with all your friends!

The creators of the 5 videos generating the most views on YouTube win a prize, 100% guaranteed! So, what are you waiting for?

  • Make your video funny, special, inspiring, or attractive in any imaginable way
  • Share the video with all your friends and motivate them to share your video!


  • From the top 5 participants with the most views (the finalists), a jury will select a winner who will be send on a free language holiday!
  • The other 4 finalists will receive a € 20 Amazon Gift Voucher.


  • Deadline for submitting videos: 19 December 2014
  • End of contest - moment of counting amount of views of your YouTube video: 19 December 2014, 16.00h (GMT+1)

Submit your YouTube video link for the contest

Terms and Conditions of this contest

More info


Our Portals


Language Teacher of the Award


Do you know a very special language teacher or a student language ambassador?

A teacher who inspires pupils through superb teaching and supports colleagues by sharing their expertise and ideas? Or a student language ambassador who motivates young learners, showing them that learning languages is exciting, cool and contributes to their future success?

If you do, then why not nominate them for a Routes into Languages / Association for Language Learning Award?

For background documents and entry forms please click here

Student Finance for Outward Mobility event 24 October 2014


This 4-hour seminar is an excellent professional development opportunity for anyone advising students on UK higher education outward mobility programmes. It is an opportunity to hear from representatives of student finance in the four UK nations.  

For further details, please go to:


Threlford Memorial Cup - nominations now open


Each year, the IoL Educational Trust (IoLET) hosts an Awards Evening to honour candidates who have performed exceptionally well in the IoL Educational Trust (IoLET) examinations.

Along with awards of academic recognition, the Threlford Memorial Cup is also presented during the ceremony and is awarded to an individual, organisation or project that has made a significant contribution to ‘fostering the study of languages’. The David Crystal Trophy is presented to the runner up.

The winners of the Threlford Memorial Cup and the David Crystal Trophy are chosen by a panel who now invite nominations for the 2014 awards.

If you know of a person or organisation that deserves to be recognised for their work within the field of language study we would be very pleased to hear from you; please use the nomination form below.

For further information please contact: Debbie Butler at the Chartered Institute of Linguists via email or telephone +44 (0)20 7940 3100.

CLOSING DATE FOR NOMINATIONS: Friday 5 September 2014 (Downloadable form can be found below)

Awards will be presented in November.


More about the award and past winners

The Threlford Memorial Cup was originally presented in 1935 by the founder of the Institute of Linguists, Sir Lacon Threlford, for “fostering the study of languages”. This award attracts a strong field of contenders and the David Crystal Trophy is given as a Special Commendation.

Previously awarded for excellence in an examination, the Threlford Memorial Cup is now presented to a person, institution or organisation that has strived to foster the study of languages, in keeping with Sir Lacon’s intent. A wide range of winners representing a diverse and innovative spectrum of language learning has been presented with the cup.


The current cup holder is 2013 award winner Lizzie Fane, founder of the website Lizzie was astonished by the lack of information and advice available to help her prepare for her year abroad as a student of Italian. The website she developed in response to this has grown into a flourishing business, offering practical advice to language students embarking on their third year abroad, including a jobs board for students and graduates with linguistic and intercultural skills.

As the founder of a start-up, it's incredibly exciting to receive recognition at this level from such a prestigious organisation as the CIOL. It's a validation stamp that the site is making a difference.’                                                    

                                                                                            Lizzie Fane


The 2012 winner, Arsenal Double Club Languages, were praised for their ambition to address both gender and social imbalance in language learning and their innovative blend of education through enjoyment. Special mention was also given for the careful and thoughtful nomination application.


2011 winners, Italian in Italy, were commended for their work both in their language centre and through participating in Europe-wide projects. In 2010, Luisa Ribeiro was awarded for her work with the Portuguese speaking Community, and on the importance of home languages, on behalf of Lambeth Council, and in 2009, the ‘Our Languages Project’ won for supporting community languages and aiming to encourage community cohesion, celebrating pupil achievement and promoting plurilingualism.

New campaigns for Languages


Languages Manifesto

The All Party Parliamentary Group on Languages is launching its Manifesto Campaign for Languages aimed at all political parties in the run-up to the next election.

The University Council of Modern Languages (UCML) GCSE requirement

UCML is launching a campaign aimed at all universities to ask for a language qualification as an entry requirement regardless of subject of study.

More information on these campaigns is available on the UCML website