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Two new courses to help boost Gaelic language and community development efforts

Sabhal Mòr Ostaig UHI is to offer two new courses, the CPD awards in Language Development and Community Development, starting next year, in a bid to bolster Gaelic and community development work. The awards are aimed at those working in Gaelic language and community development, and will provide them with a professional accreditation and some of the necessary skills to promote language and community in a variety of ways and levels.

The two CPDs will be delivered via supported distance learning and will be available through the medium of Gaelic or English. Each CPD contains two modules, which are based on modules from the BA (Honours) Gaelic and Development. The programme will be particularly useful to Gaelic development officers and anyone who is involved in Gaelic development and revitalisation, to people who are involved in community development where Gaelic is a part of that work, and to those involved in education. Students will gain key skills and knowledge vital to development work. They will learn about policies, best practice, planning and many other areas which are central to language and community development.

John Norman MacLeod, SMO’s Director of Studies, said: “Language and community development are increasingly important professionalising fields, as recognised within the National Plan for Gaelic 2012-17. Students on the CPD awards will acquire a thorough understanding of the particular situation of the Gaelic language, of communities in the Gaidhealtachd and further afield and learn of best practice from international research into minority language revitalisation and community regeneration.

“Staff involved in delivering the awards are active researchers and practitioners and have extensive experience, not only of delivering distance learning provision, but also of working with and within Gaelic-speaking communities and of actively engaging with development agencies. In undertaking the CPDs, students have an opportunity to utilise and extend their language skills and to develop an awareness of the importance of Gaelic within language planning and community development situations. Opportunities exist through the College for further advanced language learning and for the further utilisation of Gaelic in a work-related capacity.”

The CPD in Language Development teaches students about language policy and language planning and how they take effect in all areas and at every level – in the family, in the community, in the work place, within charitable and voluntary organisations, and at all levels of government, from local to international.

With the CPD in Community Development, people will learn about how community development work can help to strengthen Gaelic and the many ways in which that can be achieved, and about the requirements of different communities, from big cities to rural areas. The course will not simply concentrate on theory, but will equip students with a number of practical skills as well.

The induction programme for the two CPD courses will begin on 21 January in the new year, and anyone interested in applying should do so before 7 January.

For more information contact Gillian Munro on or 01471 888311.

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