Welcome to the Language Development Group


About our Work

The Language Development Group (LDG) is an inter-faculty unit in the Academic Development Programme, located in the Centre for Higher Education Development.

The LDG has been in existence since the 1980s, and was one of UCT's first responses to promoting equity. The group focuses on the role of English in academic literacy in a multilingual society. We promote and facilitate access to higher education within an ethos of social justice and national redress.

Mission Statement

The Language Development Group promotes and facilitates access to higher education at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels within an ethos of social justice and redress. The role of English in a multilingual society is an abiding concern of the group.

We are a university-wide resource, and understand lanuage development' to include teaching, research and curriculum development centred on the discipline of Applied Language Studies and the related ideas of academic literacy.

We focus on these aspects of language in education:

  • The concerns of students who have English as a second language;
  • The acquisition of discipline specific discourses from undergraduate to postgraduate levels;
  • The impact of schooling on academic literacy.

We set about our work in a variety of context-dependent ways. We aim to:

  • Keep the teaching, research and curriculum development aspects of our work closely integrated;
  • Form strong partnerships (with individuals, departments, faculties and institutions).

We provide a service for students (both undergraduate and postgraduate) and staff at UCT by:

  • Teaching and curriculum development in academic literacy courses, foundation courses (especially in the reception environment) and Applied Language Studies;
  • Providing a drop-in-consultancy for students at all levels, through the Writing Centre;
  • Offering services such as tutor training, professional development and workshops on writing to courses and departments;
  • Conducting research into access to academic literacies;
  • Contributing to policy development in language related areas;
  • Collaborating with the Multilingual Education Project in the development of multilingualism in the environment.


Teaching Interventions

Our teaching interventions include the following:

  • Accredited academic literacy courses
  • Academic literacy modules wi thin accredited content courses
  • Academic literacy interventions which are integrated into courses both at Undergraduate and at Postgraduate level
  • Postgraduate Student Association workshops
  • Academic literacy workshops both at Undergraduate and at Postgraduate level
  • Writers Circles
  • Training of Writing Centre consultants and training of tutors
  • Academic Staff Development workshops
  • Accredited courses in masters programmes
  • Guest seminars and lecture