English Education Policy in Sweden: Global and Local Engagement

Project: ResearchIndividual research project

Research areas and keywords

UKÄ subject classification

  • Didactics
  • Specific Languages


In 2011, a new set of national curricula took effect in Sweden (SFS 2010:800; SFS 2010:2039). Along with the curricula came new syllabi for upper secondary subjects, including languages. This was the first major reform by the Swedish National Agency for Education (hereafter Skolverket) of the national syllabus for English in the decade since the previous language education syllabi came into force in 2000. The 2011 policy purports to advance further a globalized stance (Gy 2011a), raising the issue of how the teaching and learning of English can be conceptualized in this light.

To date, the 2011 curricula have not been carefully investigated from the perspective of educational language policy. Accordingly, this project draws upon a discourse analytic approach to language policy to investigate English education curricula from a two-fold perspective: (a) policy content and (b) teacher engagement with policy content.

The first part of the project focuses on an analytical reading of the core documents that govern upper secondary English education: the national syllabus for English, Skolverket’s accompanying guide and commentary on the syllabus, and the general upper secondary curriculum. The second part of the project focuses on how policy is interpreted by educational practitioners, specifically pre-service English teachers, by using role-play situated in a teacher education course to document how teachers develop as language policy arbiters.

Layman's description

This project examines English education policy in Sweden for the upper secondary level along two dimensions: policy content and teacher engagement with policy content. In the first part, the text of educational policy related to English teaching in Sweden is analyzed to understand how the subject of English is situated in Sweden. In the second part, pre-service teacher engagement with policy interpretation is investigated using role-play to document how they learn to interpret and negotiate educational policy as part of teacher training.
Short titleEnglish Education Policy in Sweden
Effective start/end date2015/03/152018/01/01


  • Hult, Francis (PI)

Related research output

Hult, F. 2018 In : ELT Journal.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Hult, F. 2017 Discourse and Education. Wortham, S. E. F., Kim, D. & May, S. (eds.). 3 ed. Springer, p. 111-121 (Encyclopedia of Language and Education)

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingBook chapter

Hult, F. 2017

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper, not in proceeding

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Related activities

Francis Hult (Invited speaker)
2017 Jan 31

Activity: Talk or presentationInvited talk

Francis Hult (Invited speaker)
2016 Oct 18

Activity: Talk or presentationInvited talk

Francis Hult (Invited speaker)
2015 Oct 22

Activity: Talk or presentationInvited talk

View all (4)