TRẦN Thị Minh


Asian-Africa Institute, University of Hamburg /
Faculty of Vietnamese Studies,  Hanoi National University of Education


Categories as a Tool for Evaluating Vietnamese Texts Written by Vietnamese-German Adolescents: Explanation, Limitation and Initial Analysis


Vietnamese comprise the largest Asian ethnic group in Germany (Bernd Wolf, 2007). An increase in educational achievements in school has been observed (Walter, 2011) and as a result there have been some projects related to Vietnamese immigrant children. So far, however, there are still few studies on language proficiency, especially as far as the home language, i.e. Vietnamese, is concerned. In this talk I will present a study dealing with the question of how to evaluate Vietnamese language proficiency of Vietnamese-German adolescents.

This study draws on Vietnamese data collected for the LiMA Panel Study (LiPS) within the Hamburg cluster of excellence: Linguistic Diversity Management in Urban Areas (LiMA). In a pilot study, 28 Vietnamese-German adolescents at the age of 15 were recruited. Data of 20 participants who provided a full set of written texts in both Vietnamese and German were chosen for the analysis.

To evaluate the Vietnamese proficiency of the participants, a tool with eight categories was created, such as Aufgabenbewältigung (task performance), Adressierung (addressing), Schriftsprachlichkeit-Bildungsprachliche Elemente (the elements of written language / academic language), Textstrukturierung (text structure), Klassifikatoren (classifiers), Wortschatz (vocabulary), Verbindung von Sätzen (cohesion), Zusammenfassung (summary).

In this talk, we would like to discuss the categories for evaluating written texts of Vietnamese-German adolescents and present an initial quantitative analysis based on these categories. We would also like to discuss the limitations of these categories in order to improve and expand them for further use.