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Evidence-based foreign language learning – Multilingualism in education (EBFL)


Background to the theme
Foreign language learning (FLL) is a key factor for educational success and integration in a modern, globalized world. European countries have set ambitious educational standards for FLL in the last decades, and migration and globalization have given rise to increasingly heterogeneous and multilingual student populations in schools. In this challenging context, sophisticated empirical research on the effectiveness of FLL in educational contexts is paramount. Reflecting this complex agenda, the first conference on «Evidence-based foreign language learning – Multilingualism in education (EBFL)» aims to bring together empirical researchers on FLL from the fields of «Fachdidaktik», educational and cognitive psychology, neurolinguistics and applied linguistics.

Date | Location
New date: 4th–7th October 2021, Monte Verità Hotel, Ascona, Switzerland, CANCELLED

Plenary Speakers

  • Baumert, Juergen (Max Planck Institute for Educational Research, Berlin): Starting foreign language learning early at school — Long-term proficiency of early, middle, and late beginners
  • Festman, Julia (School of Teacher Education, Tirol): Mixed-methods designs for empirical research on FFL and multilingualism.
  • Ludwig, Peter H. (Univ. Koblenz-Landau): The quality of learning strategy use in foreign language classes. Video-based measurement of trace data in cooperative learning environments.
  • Meyer, Martin (Univ. Zürich): Beyond Broca and Wernicke – new insights about the brain-language relationship
  • Stern, Elsbeth (ETH Zürich): Challenges and progress in researching STEM learning in a real class context

Call for Papers
Submission period from 15th January until 15th February 2021

We assume that a few new places will become available for the conference in October 2021. For that reason there will be a new Call for Papers from 15th January to 15th February 2021. Researchers who had not submitted a paper for the original conference can submit a proposal at that time. Their contributions will be evaluated by the scientific committee.

We welcome proposals about empirical evidence on foreign language learning and learners across varied geopolitical contexts and spanning the widest possible range of methodologies, epistemologies, and fields. We are keen to offer a rich program that explores phenomena at different nested levels — societies, schools and classrooms, communities and families, minds and brains.

To register for this conference, please submit an abstract (300 words) for a conference paper by 15th February 2021. The organizing committee will evaluate all submitted abstracts on the basis of the following criteria: theoretical background, empirical design, originality and relevance of research until 31st March 2021. If your paper for the conference is accepted, you will be able to register for it. It is possible for two researchers or a team to submit a paper jointly.

Submit a paper

The registration for the original conference date ran from 1st to 15th June 2020. Papers which were accepted for the original conference will automatically be transferred to the conference in 2021. Researchers who registered for the 2020 conference but do not want to be part of the edition in 2021 should inform conference organizers.
New registration period from 1st until 15th May 2021.
The number of participants at this conference is limited to 50.

Intended addressees

  • Researchers in first and foreign language acquisition and related fields
  • Researchers in educational sciences with an interest in SLA
  • Researchers and lecturers in second language teaching and learning (Fachdidaktiker*Innen)
  • PhD and post-doctoral students in these fields

The conference languages are English and German.

Contributions by participants will consist of individual presentations/lectures of 20–30 minutes. These will be grouped into «workshops» of similar topics and approaches.
Papers can be presented by a maximum of two participants attending the conference.


  • Stefan Keller (PH FHNW and University of Basel)
  • Jens Möller (University of Kiel)
  • Simone Pfenninger (University of Salzburg)
  • Olaf Köller (IPN – Leibniz Institute for Science and Mathematics Education, Kiel)
  • Claudia Finkbeiner (University of Kassel)

Conference Fees

  • Regular fee: CHF 470.–
  • Reduced fee (PhD students): CHF 320.–

The fees cover admission to all scientific sessions and all conference material, accommodation (3 nights), all meals, the participation in the evening networking events and other social activities. (Note that fees may be subject to small change.)

Fees will be refunded in full if notice of cancellation is received by 1st June 2021. 50 % of the conference fees will be refunded in case notification of cancellation is received later, but not later than 1st July 2021. After 1st July 2021, no fees are refunded. Delegates who fail to attend without notifying the organizers will be liable for the whole conference fees.


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Datum und Zeit

04.10.2021 - 07.10.2021 iCal


Monte Verità Hotel

Veranstaltet durch

Pädagogische Hochschule

University of Basel | University of Kiel | University of Salzburg | IPN – Leibniz Institute for Science and Mathematics Education, Kiel | University of Kassel | University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland, School of Education


English and German

Detailed information

Detailed information is also available for download.


Conference program

Detailed information is available for download.

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