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Special Issue 2014: 'Teaching English to young learners'

Call for papers

The ongoing expansion of English language teaching for young learners and teenagers has been a notable feature of ELT in recent years. In many countries, English is now compulsory in primary as well as secondary education, whilst English for pre-school learners is also increasingly common. Indeed, some estimates suggest that up to 80 per cent of ELT globally is directed at students in primary or secondary schools, in a range of very diverse contexts around the world.

However, as both parents and educational authorities seek to increase younger learners’ English language skills, we cannot assume that an earlier start to learning English is automatically better. The advisability of an early start to learning English can be affected by a number of factors, ranging from the availability of suitably skilled teachers and appropriate resources to concerns about the possible implications for the teaching and learning of other languages.

ELT Journal invites submissions for a Special Issue focusing on ‘Teaching English to young learners’. By ‘young learners’, we mean pre-school, primary level and teenage learners of English.

The Special Issue provides an opportunity to explore the principles and practice which underpin the teaching of English to young learners, and also to examine and discuss issues which are implicit in teaching young learners and teenagers in context, for example, the effects of educational policy; review, testing and evaluation procedures; young learner teacher training and education; and cultural concerns in the teaching of English to young learners and teenagers.

Some key areas which contributors could explore include, but are not limited to:

• bilingual education
• blended learning for young learners and teenagers
• classroom practice, methods, and methodologies
• CLIL for young learners and teenagers
• educational policy and the teaching of young learners and teenagers
• home language literacy skills versus English language literacy skills development
• literature and teaching young learners
• parents' roles and attitudes towards ELT for young learners and teenagers
• researching the teaching of young learners
• syllabus and curriculum development
• young learner teacher training and education
• young learners’ assessment
• is starting English instruction earlier really better?


Contributions are welcome from anyone involved in ELT. Contributors should consult the current online ‘Instructions to authors’ before submitting articles, as this contains important information about the focus and format of articles. Articles not submitted in accordance with the ‘Instructions to authors’ will not be considered for publication. See our website:

The deadline for submissions is 31st August 2013.

Articles should be submitted online via ELT Journal’s ScholarOne Manuscripts system, and will be subject to anonymous peer review.

Information about writing for ELT Journal, the Journal’s style guidelines, and other ‘Instructions to authors’ can be found at:

For questions or further information, please contact the Editor of ELT Journal, Graham Hall, at