Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in Applied Linguistics and University Honors


Applied Linguistics

First Advisor

G. Tucker Childs


Native language and education -- Case studies, Heritage language speakers -- Oregon -- Portland, Portland State University -- Students -- Attitudes, Language and languages -- Study and teaching




This paper presents the findings of the Campus Language Capacity Survey 2013, a study conducted as an online survey to investigate heritage language usage at Portland State University. Heritage language is defined as “an indigenous or immigrant language other than English.” The survey was sent to 15,000 randomly selected participants from the PSU student, staff, and faculty body; over 1,000 responses were collected. There was a 10% response rate with 119 participants self-identified as heritage language speakers and/or learners. These participants are individuals in the PSU community who have ties to their heritage community. The top five heritage languages named were Spanish, French, German, Russian, and Japanese. From the 119 identified heritage language learners and/or speakers, 64% indicated that they would be interested in having their heritage language available as an online course through PSU and 72% indicated that they would be interested in having their heritage language fulfill the 2-year foreign language credit requirement. The data from this study will inform the creation of new programs tailored to the needs of those enrolling in, teaching, or funding heritage language courses.


An undergraduate honors thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Bachelor of Arts in University Honors and Applied Linguistics and Psychology.

Persistent Identifier