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Micronesian Language Institute

Micronesian Area Research Center


The Micronesian Language Institute

Hafa Adai! The Micronesian Language Institute is a special part of the Micronesian Area Research Center (MARC), and is one of the reach units under the Office of Sponsored Programs at the University of Guam. MLI was established at UOG in May 1990 and began full operations in December 1991.  The purpose of MLI is to conduct research, service, and teaching activities that enlarge our understanding of the indigenous Micronesian languages of Micronesia, and promote appreciation, documentation, instruction, the creation of new materials, and further development of Micronesian language resources.

A diverse selection of language research and service activities are underway, developed either in response to specific needs identified by governments and agencies within the Micronesian region, or because they are specialty areas of MLI professionals.

Especially prominent in MLI’s past decade have been federally funded grants supporting professional development for educators in instructional strategies that address educational effectiveness in the indigenous  languages as well as English; e.g., dual certification of teachers in a modern language as well as a content area; family literacy; and collaborative  program development with George Washington High School for English language learners.  As part of these grants, MLI has been able to sponsor courses featuring national and international language and linguistic experts.  MLI faculty and associate scholars work closely with academic centers in Germany, multiple locations in the U.S., and throughout the Pacific. MLI is proud of its history of addressing the interests and needs of Micronesian language communities of Guam and the region.  These include several studies related to Micronesian migration induced by the Compacts of Free Association and its multi-directional impacts.  Assessment of children’s competencies in indigenous and English languages, and in academic content areas, continue to be important interests of MLI.  Basic language research with Chamorro elders and child cognitive and language development research with Chuukese children are among active faculty efforts. New course.