English-medium instruction, English-medium higher education, multilingual higher education, pre-pandemic decade, trends.


The pre-pandemic decade (2010–2019) featured the intensive spread of globalisation worldwide, resulting in the spread of multilingual higher education with English-medium instruction. The pre-pandemic decade is likely to have become an era of rapid development of global multilingual higher education. Therefore, the article makes an effort to reveal the trends in developing a global multilingual higher education in the pre-pandemic decade, which could contribute to understanding this phenomenon in the post-pandemic times. Moreover, in the recent publications related to trends in the digital transformation of higher education during the COVID-19 pandemic, the issues of multilingual education are not considered. This remark makes this study timely and significant. The systematic examination of 38 scientific resources published primarily on the Web of Science Core Collection database in 2010–2019 makes it possible to reveal the following trends in multilingual higher education development on macro-, meso-, and micro-levels. The research covers the time frame from 2010 to 2019 – the official beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, the following research insights are presented in the paper. First, the author makes an effort to distinguish the main components of English-medium higher education. Second, the article presents the geographical distribution of multilingual higher education (2010–2019). Furthermore, the findings allow the assumption, that multilingual higher education in the pre-pandemic decade (2010–2019) experienced transformation to bilingual type with a dominant English-medium instruction, which, in turn, launched real multilingualism with a tendency to the equal development of national languages in educational settings.



Agai-Lochi, E. (2015). English as medium of instruction in university education. Proceedings of the 1st GlobELT Conference on Teaching and Learning English as an Additional Language, 199, 340–347.

Baker, W., & Huttner, J. (2017). English and more: a multisite study of roles and conceptualisations of language in English medium multilingual universities from Europe to Asia. Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development, 38 (6), 501–516.

Baker, W. and Huttner, J. (2018). «We are not the language police»: Comparing multilingual EMI programmes in Europe and Asia. International Journal of Applied Linguistics, 29 (1), 78–94.

Caruso, E. (2018). Translanguaging in higher education: Using several languages for the analysis of academic content in the teaching and learning process. Language Learning in Higher Education, 8 (1), 65–90.

Cenoz, J. (2012). Bilingual and Multilingual Education: Overview. In C. A. Chapelle (Ed.), The Encyclopedia of Applied Linguistics. Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Chríost, D. M. G., & Bonotti, M. (2018). Brexit, Language Policy and Linguistic Diversity. Palgrave Pivot Cham.

Costales, A. F. (2017). English-taught programmes in European higher education: A challenge to diversity or an opportunity to integrate language and content learning? 13th Conference on British and American Studies: Language Diversity in a Global World, 181–197.

Ding, F., & Stapleton, P. (2016). Walking like a toddler: Students’ autonomy development in English during cross-border transitions. System, 59, 12–28.

Doiz, A., Lasagabaster, D., & Sierra, J. M. (2011). Internationalisation, multilingualism and English-medium instruction. World Englishes, 30 (3), 345–359.

Doiz, A., Lasagabaster, D., & Sierra, J. M. (2014). Language friction and multilingual policies in higher education: the stakeholders’ view. Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development, 35 (4), 345–360.

Gao, X.S., & Zheng, Y. Y. (2019). Multilingualism and higher education in Greater China. Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development, 40 (7), 555–561.

Gimeno, A., Seiz, R., de Siqueira, J. M., & Martínez, A. (2010). Content and language integrated learning in higher technical education using the inGenio online multimedia authoring tool. Procedia – Social and Behavioral Sciences, 2 (2), 3170–3174.

Guarda, M., & Helm, F. (2017). 'I have discovered new teaching pathways': the link between language shift and teaching practice. International Journal of Bilingual Education and Bilingualism, 20 (7), 897–913.

Jenkins, J. (2009). English as a Lingua Franca: interpretations and attitudes. World Englishes, 28 (2), 200–207.

Kadenge, M., & Nkomo, D. (2011). The politics of the English language in Zimbabwe. Language Matters, 42 (2), 248–263.

Kunioshi, N., Noguchi, J., Tojo, K., & Hayashi, H. (2016). Supporting English-medium pedagogy through an online corpus of science and engineering lectures. European Journal of Engineering Education, 41 (3), 293–303.

Lu, S., & Singh, M. (2017). Debating the Capabilities of «Chinese Students» for Thinking Critically in Anglophone Universities. Education Sciences, 7 (1), 22.

Lauridsen, K. M. (2016). IntlUni – the opportunities and challenges of the multilingual and multicultural learning space in the international university. European Journal of Applied Linguistics, 4 (2), 349-354.

Liu, W. (2016). Conceptualising multilingual capabilities in anglophone higher degree research education: Challenges and possibilities for reconfiguring language practices and policies. Education Sciences, 6 (4), 39.

Macaro, E., Curle, S., Pun, J., An, J., & Dearden, J. (2018). A systematic review of English medium instruction in higher education. Language Teaching, 51 (1), 36–76.

Martin, I. P. (2018). Reconceptualizing English Education in Multilingual Philippines. In: Martin, I. (Eds.). Reconceptualizing English Education in a Multilingual Society. English Language Education, 13. Springer.

Mayaba, N. N., Ralarala, M. K., & Angu, P. (2018). Student Voice: Perspectives on Language and Critical Pedagogy in South African Higher Education. Educational Research for Social Change, 7 (1), 1–12.

Meiramova, S., Akylbayeva, A., & Shaibakova, D. (2015). Profession-oriented language learning in multilingual education perspectives. 7th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies (EDULEARN 15), 2382–2388.

Miranda, N., Berdugo, M., & Tejada, H. (2016). Conflicting views on language policy and planning at a Colombian university. Current Issues in Language Planning, 17 (3-4), 422–440.

Mishra, M., Mishra, Ch., Shukla., R., Bharani, A., & Jain., A. (2022). Emerging Trends in Higher Education. RFI Publication.

Moore, E. (2016). Conceptualising multilingual higher education in policies, pedagogical designs and classroom practices. Language, Culture and Curriculum, 29 (1), 22–39.

Mori, J., & Sanuth, K.K. (2018). Navigating between a monolingual utopia and translingual realities: Experiences of American learners of Yorùbá as an additional language, Applied Linguistics, 39 (1), 78–98.

Mospan, N. (2022). Factors 2020: Quality assurance in higher education and the labour market. In V. Ogneviuk (Ed.), Quality of University Education: Educological Discourse. (pp. 118–141). Oktan Print.

Mospan, N. (2023). Trends in emergency higher education digital transformation during the COVID-19 pandemic. Journal of University Teaching & Learning Practice, 20 (1), 50–70.

Ndebele, H., & Zulu, N.S. (2017). The management of isiZulu as a language of teaching and learning at the University of KwaZulu-Natal’s College of Humanities. Language and Education, 31 (6), 509–525.

Pinto, S., & Sa, M.H.A.E. (2019). Language education policy in Portuguese public universities: the voices of institutional stakeholders. Current Issues in Language Planning, 20 (2), 140–159.

Papashane, M., & Milondzo, K.S. (2010). Academic literacy and African English second language speakers: The need for a comprehensive language support initiative in higher education. 4th International Technology, Education and Development Conference (INTED 2010), 5290–5297.

Schmidt-Unterberger, B. (2018). The English-medium paradigm: A conceptualisation of English-medium teaching in higher education. International Journal of Bilingual Education and Bilingualism, 21 (5), 527–539.

UNESCO (2003). Education in a multilingual world: UNESCO education position paper.

Van Canh, L., & Renandya, W. A. (2017). Teachers’ English proficiency and classroom language use: A conversation analysis study. RELC Journal, 48 (1), 67–81.

van der Walt, Ch. (2016). Reconsidering the role of language-in-education policies in multilingual higher education contexts. Stellenbosch Papers in Linguistics Plus, 49.

Wächter, B., & Maiworm, F. (2008). English-taught programmes in European higher education. The Picture in 2007. Lemmens Medien GmbH.

Xu, Z. (2014). Functional English and Chinese as Mediums of Instruction in a Higher Institution in Hong Kong. In: Dunworth, K., Zhang, G. (Eds.), Critical Perspectives on Language Education. Multilingual Education, 11. Springer, Cham.

You, X. Y., & You, X. Q. (2013). American content teachers’ literacy brokerage in multilingual university classrooms. Journal of Second Language Writing, 22 (3), 260–--276.




How to Cite

Mospan, N. (2023). TRENDS IN MULTILINGUAL HIGHER EDUCATION IN THE PRE-PANDEMIC DECADE. Continuing Professional Education: Theory and Practice, 76(3), 5–16.