TerminoCLIL: A terminology-based approach to CLIL

Alexandra Marina Nunes Albuquerque, Manuel Moreira da Silva

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Due to the extra-linguistic nature of knowledge, it is generally through the discourse that knowledge and its representations are reached. Knowledge, which can be organised by experts or by students as they construct their own competencies, is always transferred by a verbal text. Terms are, thus, the privileged means to represent knowledge. In this context, terminology asa discipline dedicated to the scientific study of concepts and terms used in specialized languages and to their structuring in specialized knowledge representation systems, appears as the link between the two dimensions of CLIL: (a) knowledge and competencies (concepts and expertise) and (b) language (discourse on the knowledge). Together, these dimensions can result in non-ambiguous and efficient communication about specialised knowledge since there is no term (language) without a concept (knowledge) and vice versa. We therefore propose a terminology-based approach to CLIL. It is our view that the linguistic elements (terms) can help students access, acquire, and use (represent) the knowledge from experts (CLIL teachers and materials). This paper also considers and describes a Learning Activity Plan based on the proposed approach, which covers learning objectives, terminology activities and related tools, developedto support teachers’ activity and help accomplish the objectives of acquiring specialised knowledge.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)177-189
Number of pages12
JournalLingue Culture Mediazioni - Languages Cultures Mediation (LCM)
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • Terminology-based approach
  • TerminoCLIL
  • CLIL
  • Terminology
  • Specialized knowledge


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