Globalization and Language and Education Reform in Colombia: A Critical Outlook.


  • Jaime Usma Universidad de Antioquia



globalization, education policies, language policy, National Program of Bilingualism.


This paper explores the connection between economic, political, and cultural globalization processes and recent education and language reforms in Colombia. Throughout the article, the author attempts to demonstrate that current education and language policies in Colombia are tightly connected to transnational agendas and models of reform that do not necessarily represent a real benefit for the majority of the population, but, instead, may render privileges for a few. With this analysis, the author insists on the need for an equitable plan for the improvement of language teaching and learning in Colombia in a way that considers local priorities of economic development, respects local knowledge and culture, and accounts for a systemic and fundamental improvement of the public system based on the dissimilar conditions that affect schools, teachers, and students in both the private and the public sectors in the country

Recibido: 16-02-09 / Aceptado: 30-06-09

How to reference this article:

Usma, J. (2009). Globalization and Language and Education Reform in Colombia: A Critical Outlook. Íkala. 14(2), pp.19-42. 


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Author Biography

Jaime Usma, Universidad de Antioquia

Jaime Usma is a foreign language teacher educator and active researcher at Grupo de Investigación Acción y Evaluación en Lenguas Extranjeras GIAE, Escuela de Idiomas, Universidad de Antioquia. PhD Candidate in Curriculum and Instruction and Researcher at the Wisconsin Center for Education Research, WCER, University of Wisconsin, Madison. His academic and research interests include: education and language policies, autonomy in foreign language teaching and learning, action research, teacher professional development, and teacher education.


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How to Cite

Usma, J. (2009). Globalization and Language and Education Reform in Colombia: A Critical Outlook. Íkala, Revista De Lenguaje Y Cultura, 14(2), 19–42.