You are here: News → Expert in the Spotlight → Alberto Fernández Costales & Xosé Antón González Riaño

Expert in the Spotlight June 2014: Alberto Fernández Costales & Xosé Antón González Riaño

The Expert in the Spotlight feature gives you the chance to interact one-on-one with our Ask the expert-section. The feature also provides interesting and insightful comments regarding the subjects mentioned above, in-depth content and exclusive Q and A’s.

Featured Expert / Area of focus

Alberto Fernández Costales (left) and Xosé Antón González Riaño (right) are the authors of the Regional dossier Asturian: the Asturian language in education in Spain (PDF), published by Mercator Research Centre in 2014.

Alberto Fernández Costales works as a professor at the University of Oviedo, Department of Education in Oviedo (Spain). His specialisations are bilingualism and multilingualism, didactics of language and literature and CLIL ( Content and Language Integrated Learning).

Xosé Antón González Riaño also works as a professor at the University of Oviedo, Department of Education. His specialisations are didactics, linguistics and literature.

Face to face with Alberto Fernández Costales and Xosé Antón González Riaño

What is your background in the field of regional and minority languages/education/multilingualism?

Costales: I work with language learning, language teaching and foreign language acquisition. I am particularly interested in the implementation of bilingual programmes at any level, the relationship between English and minority languages, and also Content and Language Integrated Learning.

Riaño: I started as a teacher of Asturian language in Primary Education; later on, I completed my PhD thesis on the language interferences between Asturian and Castilian Spanish. From that point, I have been working at the University of Oviedo on bilingualism at schools, minority languages, and socio-linguistic aspects and interculturality.

What do you think is the major challenge in your field of work?

The need to promote Asturian students a comprehensive language training and not separate language skills in regard to their mother tongue and other languages.

What is one of the hottest new projects / items you are working on?

Currently, we are working with sociolinguistic attitudes of academic staff in educational establishments in Asturias (focusing on Primary and Secondary Education); the relationship between language and intercultural attitudes. In addition, we are also conducting research on teachers’ attitudes and students’ perception on the implementation of bilingual programmes in institutions of higher education.

Are there any important references such as articles, links, etc. you would like to mention?

Fernández Costales, Alberto & González Riaño, Xosé Antón (2015), "Teacher Satisfaction Concerning the Implementation of Bilingual Programmes in a Spanish University", Porta Linguarum, in press. Porta Linguarum is an international interuniversity journal specialised in foreign language didactics. It aims to publish empirical studies, critical revisions, and theoretical models related to the factors that influence the teaching and learning processes.

González Riaño, Xosé Antón, Hevia Artime, Isabel & Fernández Costales, Alberto (2013). “Language Attitudes of Asturian Students in the Area of Navia Eo”, Language and Intercultural Communication 13(4): 450-469.

Do you have any questions on these topics?

Ask Alberto & Xosé Antón