Jim Cummins (2024) How can emerging technologies advance the creation of language-friendly and literacy-friendly schools?, Language, Culture and Curriculum, 37:1, 106-119, DOI: 10.1080/07908318.2024.2306286

The evolution of digital technologies has frequently been hailed as a ‘game-changer’ in education. However, like previous technological innovations, such as television, these recent developments have failed thus far to demonstrate any significant large-scale improvement in the quality of educational provision or in educational outcomes. The papers in this special issue suggest that there is potential to change this scenario. Digital platforms such as Binogi have been able to exploit technological advances such as vastly improved crosslinguistic machine translation ushered in by artificial intelligence to make curriculum content much more accessible to multilingual students. Drawing on the papers in this special issue, I highlight three dimensions of digital learning environments that have demonstrated pedagogical credibility to enhance multilingual learners’ development of literacy and their acquisition of academic content in the target language: (a) they provide extensive access to and promote engagement with written (and oral) input in the target language, (b) they provide instructional scaffolds within the digital environment to promote both awareness of how language works and intentional learning of academic concepts and subject matter content, and (c) they encourage and enable students to become autonomous learners who are capable of self-regulating and evaluating their own learning.