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By Michele A. Hernández
A former admissions officer at Dartmouth collage unearths how the world's so much hugely selective faculties rather make their judgements.
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Additional info for A Is for Admission: The Insider's Guide to Getting into the Ivy League and Other Top Colleges
Although relatively cohesive in terms of population with only two indigenous languages, the Dutch have not remained rigidly monolingual. The emphasis in this case study by Maria Oud-de Glas and colleagues, of the Institute for Applied Social Sciences of the University of Nijmegen, is on the motivations of a small trading country towards the languages of its trading partners, and on the identification of language need and language knowledge in the country. In presenting the complex linguistic situation of the former USSR, Frances Knowles, of Aston University, notes the origin of language planning, its relationship with political ideology and practical politics, and the effects, both Page 12 of domination by Russian speakers and of the drastic political events of the past two years.
The Language Criterion It is true enough that most European languages fall into one of the seventeen main language phyla (cf Ruhlen, 1987). But within the same phylum (Indo-Hittite) appears also the extinct Hittite language, and within the same Indo-European family 9 groups, each fairly remote from the others in terms of today's communication needs: Armenian, Tocharian, the Indo-Iranian languages (including for example Hindi, Urdu, Punjabi and Romany, and Farsi, Pashto and Kurdish), Albanian, Greek, Italic, Celtic, Germanic, and Balto-Slavic (including Latvian and Russian).
As an illustration of the complexity of this challenge, Belgium is a textbook case. Officially Belgium is a trilingual country, where the three languages-French, Dutch and German -enjoy equality which is guaranteed by a series of language laws. This official trilingual situation is moreover affected by the presence of immigrant languages. Both the trilingual and the immigrant situation produce bilingual children, whose condition is however hardly comparable: the differences in their situation are closely related to socio-economic expectations and esteem factors, while school provision and particularly the bilingual approach in it does not adequately respond to these factors.
A Is for Admission: The Insider's Guide to Getting into the Ivy League and Other Top Colleges by Michele A. Hernández