Project management

Thomas Studer


(Santi Guerrero Calle research manager till August 2021)

Comparatively little research has been conducted on how adult migrants – both those with low literacy skills (non-literates) and those who have competence in a non-Latin alphabet (non-roman alphabet literates) – acquire reading and writing skills, and scholarly findings on the subject are correspondingly sparse. This condition is all the more surprising as specialist discourse on the topic of “literacy levels in adults” has long revealed that traditional differentiations between so-called...

Project management
SWIKO is a multilingual learner corpus describing learner language according to principles of corpus-linguistics. The corpus is an umbrella project developed during the 2016–2019 research period and being further developed in the 2021–2024 period. It incorporates data from other projects at the Research Centre on Multilingualism. SWIKO can currently be accessed via a request to the Institute of Multilingualism.


Further development and applications of the Swiss learner corpus SWIKO
Project management
In line with the strong presence of usage-based approaches to language description and research in language acquisition, research in corpus linguistics has intensified and diversified in recent years. This applies equally to corpus-based and corpus-oriented research into language acquisition as well as to applied pedagogical research. Nevertheless, research gaps and desiderata remain. For instance, in regards to learner corpora, certain bias towards English as the target language, intermediate...

Project management

Project supervision

Literacy courses designed for adult migrants have been offered for decades in countries experiencing significant immigration. The recent past has seen an increase in research on the teaching and learning processes that are involved in successful and sustainable literacy development for adult migrants in a non-native language and that therefore should be taken into account in literacy classes; nevertheless, significant research gaps remain. Current practice in literacy development for...

Language courses for personnel in the Federal Administration

Evaluation and analysis of courses offered and their attendance

Project conducted by the Università della Svizzera Italiana (USI)

In the interest of advancing multilingualism in public services, the Swiss Confederation is legally bound to promoting federal employees' language skills in Switzerland's official languages. The divisions within the Federal Administration are obligated to ensure that all employees have sufficient knowledge of a second official language and that persons in a leadership role additionally have passive skills in a third official language. To implement these directives, the Federal Administration...