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Literacy in Indian Akshara and Other Transparent Orthographic Languages – Teacher Education Considerations

Srimani Chakravarthi, Professor, University of St. Francis, USA, schakravarthi@stfrancis.edu

I. P. Gowramma, Professor of Education, Regional Institute of Education, Bhubaneswar – 751022. Email. – gowriip@gmail.com

Year: 2023


Alphabet-based languages are more often researched in literacy acquisition and education than akshara languages. Languages that use alphasyllabaries including symbols, called aksharas, represent a large portion of the world’s languages, including the languages of the second most populous country, India. This conceptual research paper addresses teacher education in literacy related to the akshara languages. Using the theory and research base of existing letter and akhara acquisition, with teacher education standards for literacy in alphabet-based languages, this paper presents a model for teacher education in literacy for akshara languages. This framework provides teacher education standards and other considerations, such as evaluation of teacher education curriculum and performance, to enable data-based decision making in literacy instruction. The premise of this paper is to approach the problem of dismal literacy rates by drawing into the robust research in alphabetic language literacy education by using a systematic approach to target the source – pre-service teacher education. While this paper addresses examples of languages in India, other transparent orthographies that use symbols or aksharas can draw from this to inform their teacher education in literacy.

Keywords: Teacher education, Literacy, Standards, Akshara languages; Transparent orthography; India.


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Literacy in Indian Akshara and Other Transparent Orthographic Languages – Teacher Education Consideration