To Enhance Armenian Studies We Must Teach Armenian as a Foreign Language, Says Mkrtchian

YEREVAN (Noyan Tapan)–The Armenian ministry of Education and Sciences has begun developing an official curriculum to teach Armenian as a foreign language, Minister of Education and Science Levon Mkrtchian said during a press conference on Wednesday.
Such a program needs to be developed in order to enhance Armenian Studies programs in the country, according to Mkrtchian, who expressed dissatisfaction with the current language programs in Armenia.
Mkrtchian said that the only way to develop Armenology internationally is to have a method of promoting the language abroad and teaching it in foreign languages. The Diaspora, he said, would greatly benefit from such a policy as it experiences difficulty in preserving the language.
He expressed discontent with the language policy carried on in the country, be it a native or foreign language. And for the purpose of developing Armenology, according to him, we should first have a possibility of teaching it in foreign languages, as promotion of the Armenian language abroad is done through foreign languages, in particular, in the Diaspora, which has a problem of preservation of the Armenian language.
Mkrtchian said the Ministry of Education and Science is currently working out methods for teaching Armenian as a foreign language for Diasporan Armenian students.
It is also necessary to devise methods for teaching Armenian to the nearly 4000 foreign students studying in Armenia, he explained, adding that foreign students living and receiving education in Armenian higher education institutions, currently speak in Russian or English with Armenian citizens.
"We wish to create methods, through which a foreign student will be able to learn Armenian in two years," he said. "After graduating from the University and leaving our country he will also take our language with him, automatically assisting in the spreading of Armenian," he said.

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