Though the term immersion is associated with Canadian French immersion—a program viewed as the best vehicle for developing proficiency in a second (L2) or foreign language (FL) while maintaining fluency in the mother tongue, and developing literacy in both—immersion programs have expanded to other countries and have responded to local conditions and needs. The term has also been inappropriately applied to other programs. The popularity of immersion programs shows no signs of abating.

On the contrary, it is likely to expand as bi-/multilingualism is increasingly viewed as a necessary condition for participation in today's interconnected global economy. Immersion education is one model of bilingual education: an “enrichment” model. Bilingual education entails content-based instruction through the medium of two languages. It differs from learning an L2 or ...

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