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Lingua - Socrates Action 4 - Language Learning and Teaching

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- Objectives - How to apply
- Who's eligible? - Further information
- Lingua activities - Information on previous projects

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- Objectives

The promotion of language teaching and learning is an objective of the SOCRATES programme as a whole, and of the Erasmus, Comenius and Grundtvig Actions in particular. Lingua supports these Actions through measures designed to:

  • Encourage and support linguistic diversity throughout the Union; 
  • Contribute to an improvement in the quality of language teaching and learning; 
  • Promote access to lifelong language learning opportunities appropriate to each individuals needs.

In the context of Lingua, language teaching covers the teaching and learning, as foreign languages, of all of the official Community languages as well as Irish and Luxembourgish. The national languages of the EFTA/EEA countries and of the candidate countries participating in SOCRATES are also eligible. Particular attention is paid to the development of skills in the less widely used and less taught official Community languages (the LWULT languages).

- Who is eligible?

The following types of organisations are eligible under Lingua: language schools; universities, centres providing initial or continuing training for language teachers, language resource centres, centres for research into language education; establishments developing curricula, issuing diplomas or devising methods for testing and evaluating knowledge; local or regional authorities; local, regional, national or European associations active in the field of languages teaching and learning; cultural and language support associations, including national associations; international associations of language teaching establishments; radio, television or media companies with an internet presence; publishing houses and software producers or distributors; adult education establishments and open and distance learning centres.

Should you wish to specify, whether or not your institution is eligible for funding, please contact the National Agency of your country.

- Lingua Activities

Lingua is divided into two actions: 

  • Lingua 1 - Promotion of the language learning
  • Lingua 2 - Development of language learning tools and materials
Lingua 1 - Promotion of language learning

The objectives of Lingua 1 are to promote language teaching and learning, to support the linguistic diversity of the Union, and to encourage improvements in the quality of language teaching structures and systems. Multinational partnerships, which include at least one eligible institution in each of at least three participating countries (including at least one EU Member State), are invited to submit projects in one or more of the following areas of activity:
  • Raising citizens awareness of the multilingual character of the Union and of the advantages of lifelong language learning, and to encourage them to take up language learning themselves;
  • Improve access to language learning resources and increase the support available for those learning languages;
  • Promote the dissemination of information about innovative techniques and good practices in foreign language teaching in Europe, among its target groups (especially decision-makers and key education professionals).
  • Facilitating access by individuals to language learning

Lingua 2 - Development of language learning tools and materials

The objective of Lingua 2 is to help raise the standards in language teaching and learning by ensuring the availability of sufficient high quality language learning instruments, and tools for assessing linguistic skills acquired. Lingua 2 will encourage both the development of new tools and a wider dissemination of existing tools which represent best practice and provide European added value.

The specific operational objectives are:

  • to encourage innovation in the development of  language learning and teaching tools for all sectors of education;
  • to encourage the sharing of best practices;
  • to provide a wider variety of language teaching materials to more clearly defined groups, by encouraging the production of language tools which are commercially under-represented or difficult to market on a large scale, notably because of the target group or the nature of the educational approach involved;
  • to encourage the acquisition of sufficient knowledge of foreign languages to meet the requirements of particular situations and contexts, provided that these measures are not linked to a specific profession (this would fall more within the scope of the Leonardo da Vinci programme);
  • to improve the distribution and availability of products.

- How to apply?

There is a two-phase selection process:

  1. a pre-proposal is submitted (deadline 1st November). Only if your proposal is successful you will be invited to make
  2. a full-proposal (deadline 1st March of the following year).

The Socrates General Call for Proposals 2005 and the Guidelines for Applicants (edition June 2004) should be read together. They contain all the information needed in order to apply for Socrates grants.

All applications have to be submitted to the Executive Agency.

- Further Information

If you have a specific question you can contact the Executive Agency by email

Other sources:

- Information on previous projects

Several sources of information on past projects are available concerning this Action.

  • The Compendium is a serie of documents containing a description of all the projects by selection round.  It includes a brief summary of the activities and the contact details of the participants. 
  • The  ISOC database (Socrates projects database) is an interactive database containing all the projects selected in the past.  It is updated by the project coordinators directly.
  • The Lingua Catalogue (choice of languages - EN, FR, DE, ES) on the Europa website provides detailed information about materials for teaching and learning languages. These materials have been developed by transnational partnerships with the support of the European Commission under the Lingua Programme (1990-1994) and under Lingua Action D of the Socrates Programme (1995-1999).

European Commission:


DG Education and Culture

  Projects Kick-Off Meeting
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