European Journal of Language Policy

Linguistic requirements for students and staff on EMI undergraduate degrees at universities in the Community of Madrid

European Journal of Language Policy (2019), 11, (1), 95–107.


The present article examines the new linguistic demands that have arisen with the growing implantation in the Spanish university system of English as a Medium of Instruction (EMI) and bilingual undergraduate single and double degrees. Specifically, we will look at the case of the Community of Madrid which currently has 14 traditional on-site universities (six of which are public, and eight private) and analyse the requirements made of the prospective students and teaching staff on these degree programmes in terms of language certification and entrance tests that must be passed in order to be accepted on the degree programmes or hired to teach on them. We will also seek to examine the rationales behind these requirements, attempting to identify varying patterns between different types of university, the implications for the future recruitment and training of teaching staff, as well as the impact of these developments on students.

Cet article examine les nouvelles exigences linguistiques qui ont été établies suivant l’implantation croissante dans le système universitaire espagnol de l’anglais comme moyen d’instruction (EMI) et des diplômes bilingues simples et doubles. Plus précisément, nous examinons le cas de la Communauté de Madrid, qui compte actuellement quatorze universités traditionnelles (dont six publiques et huit privées). Nous analysons les exigences auxquelles sont soumises les étudiants prospectifs et le personnel enseignant, en matière de certification linguistique et de tests d’entrée pour étudier ou pour enseigner dans ces programmes en premier cycle. Nous examinons la raison d’être de ces exigences, les différences de pratique entre différents types d’université et les implications pour le recrutement et la formation futurs du personnel enseignant, aussi bien que l’impact de ces évolutions sur les étudiants.

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Author details

Jeffrey, Susan Joyce Mary

Melchor, María Dolores Rodríguez

Walsh, Andrew Samuel