Prof. Dr. Claudine Kirsch

Claudine Kirsch

Associate professor

Fachgebiet(e) Languages & linguistics / Education & instruction
Forschungsthemen Multilingualism, Acquisition of multiple languages, Didactics of teaching languages, Development of oracy and literacy in young children
Fakultät oder Zentrum Fakultät für Geisteswissenschaften, Erziehungswissenschaften und Sozialwissenschaften
Department Fachbereich Geisteswissenschaften
Postadresse Université du Luxembourg
Maison des Sciences Humaines
11, Porte des Sciences
L-4366 Esch-sur-Alzette
Büroadresse MSH, E03 15-050
Telefon (+352) 46 66 44 9802
Video Development of oral skills
Development of oral skills
Gesprochene Sprachen English, French, German, Luxembourgish
Forschungsaufenthalte in United Kingdom
This video introduces the ipad App iTEO and its development out of the programme TEO. Researchers and a policy-maker explain how iTEO facilitates language learning and the development of ...

Claudine Kirsch is Associate Professor at the Faculty of Humanities, Education and Social Sciences at the University of Luxembourg and member of the Institute for Research on Multilingualism (MLing). She specialises in Language Learning and Teaching, Multilingualism, and Early Childhood Education. She read Science of Education at the ISERP (Teacher Training Institution) in Luxembourg and subsequently worked for nine years as a primary school teacher in Luxembourg. She took both her Masters and her PhD in Education at Goldsmiths, University of London, funded through the British Council and a grant from the ESRC. While carrying out her PhD, she was a visiting tutor at the University of Luxembourg where she delivered continuous professional development in didactics of language learning and mathematics. She also worked part-time in the research project DECOTEC (Development of Expertise in Collaborative Open Technologically enriched Educational Contexts). From 2003-2011 she worked as a lecturer at Goldsmiths and taught on BA, MA and PhD programmes and the Primary PGCE. She set up and coordinated several courses including the primary Modern Foreign Languages programme and the bilateral exchange programmes between England, France, Germany and Spain. This required close collaboration with the Teacher Development Agency (TDA), an executive agency of the Department of Education, and the National Centre for Languages (CILT) where she acted also as a national languages trainer. Claudine Kirsch was as an external examiner for an MA programme in Languages at King’s College in London and the BA in Education, Culture and Childhood at the University of Sheffield. In January 2012, she was appointed at the University of Luxembourg. She teaches on BA, MA and PhD programmes.

Claudine Kirsch’s research interests include foreign/second language learning and teaching, multilingual pedagogies, translanguaging, multilingualism, family language policies, early childhood, and language learner strategies. Since her appointment in Luxembourg, she has been the PI of four research projects: 

  • iTEO (2013-2017) which examined the use of the App iTEO for teaching and learning languages in preschools and primary schools (funding: Ministry of National Education, Childhood and Youth (MENJE) and the University of Luxembourg)
  • MuLiPEC (Developing Multilingual Pedagogies in Early Childhood) (2016-2019) which investigated the influence of professional development on the development of multilingual pedagogies in formal and non-formal early childhood education settings (funding: Luxembourg National Research Fund (FNR) and MENJE)
  • COMPARE (Collaboration with Parents and Multiliteracy in early Childhood Education, 2020-2023) which examines the development of multilingual literacies and collaboration in crèches (funding: FNR, MENJE, National Youth Service (SNJ) and the University of Luxembourg)
  • COVID-KIDS (Understanding the influence of COVID-19 on children’s and adolescents’ school experience and subjective well-being  (01.05 2020– 30.04.2021) which examines the ways in which social distancing coupled with the challenges of home schooling affects children’s and adolescents’ educational experiences and subjective well-being.

She also takes part in the project CALIDIE (Capitalising on Linguistic Diversity in Education) (2017-2022) led by Adelheid Hu, in Gabrijela Aleksić's FNR CORE Junior project TRANSLA (2019-2021) and in the EERA funded project Developing Multilingual Literacies – Exploring the role of communities for literacy development in multilingual families (January 2020 – December 2020) with Sabine Little (PI, University of Sheffield), Joana Duarte (University of Stenden), Mirjam Günter-van der Meij (University of Stenden), and Irina Usanova (University of Hamburg).


Last updated on: Dienstag, den 19. April 2022

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Present appointment

  • Associate Professor of didactics of languages and literacies
  • University of Luxembourg, Faculty of Humanities, Education and Social Sciences
  • Department of Humanities, Institute for Research on Multilingualism

Previous appointments

  • Jan. 2012 – present: Associate Professor at the University of Luxembourg
  • Sept. 2003 - Dec. 2011: Full time lecturer at Goldsmiths, University of London, teaching on BA, MA, PhD programmes, and the Primary PGCE
  • (Feb. - Sept. 2009: Maternity leave)
  • (Feb. - Sept. 2007: Maternity leave)
  • Sept. 2000 - August 2003: Visiting Tutor at Goldsmiths: Developing the Primary PGCE with a Specialism in Modern Languages
  • Sept. 2000 - July 2001: Research scientist (part-time) at the University of Luxembourg (research project DECOTEC)
  • Sept. 1997 - July 2003: Visiting Tutor at the University of Luxembourg: courses in languages and mathematics
  • Sept. 1990 - July 1999: Primary school teacher in Luxembourg

Professional and academic qualifications

  • 2007 National languages trainer (CiLT, UK)
  • 2006 PhD in Education, Goldsmiths, University of London (UK) (excellent)
  • 2000 MA in Education, Goldsmiths, University of London (UK) (excellent)
  • 1990 BA, Higher Education/ ISERP (Teacher Education), Luxembourg (excellent)

Academic functions at the university of Luxembourg

  • Member of the Faculty Council (2020- )
  • Head of the Bilingualism Matters @Luxembourg branch (2021-)
  • Head of the Institute for Research on Multilingualism (MLing) (2022-)
  • Vice-director of the Institute for Research on Multilingualism (MLing) (2018-2021)
  • Member of the steering committee of the BScE (2012-)
  • Member of the steering committee of the DTU CALIDIE (2017-2021)
  • Vice-director of the institute of Applied Educational Sciences (AES) (2014-2015)
  • Co-leader of the Cluster ‘Early Childhood’ of the Research Priority ‘Education: Focusing on Multilingualism and Diversity’ (2014-2018)
  • Vice director of the Bachelor des Sciences de l’Education (BScE) (2012-2015)

Consultancy positions

  • Member of the scientific advisory council éducation plurilingue (Ministry of National Education, Youth and Early Childhood) (2017- )

Current memberships and representations


  • National coordinator of the EU Kids Online together with Gabrijela Aleksić, Robert Reuter, Isabelle Albert
  • Member of the Maternal, Newborn, Child & Adolescent Health (MNCAH) COVID-19 Research Network of the WHO (2020- )
  • Founding Member of the LuxERA (2018- )
  • Member of 07 ‘Social Justice and Intercultural Education’ of the European Educational Research Association (ECER)
  • Member of network 31 ‘Network on Language and Education’ (ECER)
  • Member of REYLL (Multilingualism and Early childhood network)
  • Member of the scientific board of the Œuvre Nationale de Secours Grand-Duchesse Charlotte for the call “Youth Action – live well through Covid” (2021)
  • Editorial board member of the journals Language, Culture and Curriculum (LCC, since 2013) and Zeitschrift für Grundschulforschung. Bildung im Elementar- und Primarbereich (ZfG, since 2017)
  • Reviewer for the journals International Journal of Bilingual Education and Bilingualism; International Journal of Multilingualism; Language, Culture and Curriculum; Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development; Language and Education; European Journal of Teacher Education; Language Policy; Zeitschrift für Grundschulforschung, Bildung im Elementar- und Primarbereich; WHO Adolescent well-being
  • Reviewer for the National Research Fund (FNR) (2008-2011)


Prizes and awards

  • Merit-based funding (2022-2026) as assessed by the European Science Foundation
  • Senior Fellow: awarded by Advanced Higher Education in the UK. The nomination testifies to an understanding of effective approaches to teaching and learning support as a key contribution to high quality student learning
  • FNR awards (2020): prize “Outstanding-research driven innovation” for the movies of the research project MuLiPEC
  • Merit-based funding (2018-2022) as assessed by the European Science Foundation
  • “Women in Science and Engineering in Luxembourg” (WISE) (2017) - one of the 12 women selected by the National Research Fund (FNR)
  • “Meet the Scientist” (2016) - selected by the National Research Fund (FNR) to present academic work
  • British Council bursary for MA studies, accommodation, fees and travel, £5,000
  • Economic and British Research Council (ESRC) bursary (“fees only studentship on a part-time basis) of £10,000 for PhD studies from 2001-2006 (R42200154285)


Last updated on: 29 Aug 2022

Research activities (PI or researcher) at the University of Luxembourg

  • May 2021-November 2023: Digital Media as Language and Literacy Learning Spaces in Multilingual Families (DigiFam), Dr. Maria Obojska (PI), Dr. Potheini Vaiouli. Dr. Claudine Kirsch is the local mentor, Dr. Åsa Palviainen the external mentor. Funding: FNR Core Junior
  • May 2021-April 2022: Children’s voices during the Covid-19 pandemic. Insights into their learning experiences, perceptions and well-being (COVID-Kids II) Dr. Claudine Kirsch (PI), Dr. Pascale Engel (PI), Dr. Džoen Bebić-Crestany, Dr. Potheini Vaiouli, Dr. Cyril Wealer. Funding: Oeuvre Nationale de Secours Grand-Duchesse Charlotte (117,325€) (see also
  • May 2020-April 2021: Influence of social isolation and school closure on children’s and adolescents’ well-being and education (COVID-Kids I). Dr. Claudine Kirsch (PI), Dr. Pascale Engel, Dr. Sascha Neumann. Funding: Oeuvre Nationale de Secours Grand-Duchesse Charlotte (21,000€), Assurances Foyer (12,500€)
  • January 2020-December 2023: Collaboration with Parents and Multiliteracy in Early Childhood Education (COMPARE). Dr. Claudine Kirsch (PI), Dr. Sascha Neumann (January – April 2020), Dr. Gabrijela Aleksić, Dr. Džoen Bebić-Crestany, Valérie Kemp, Laura Colucci. Funding: Ministry of National Education, Childhood and Youth; National Youth Service; FNR CORE; University of Luxembourg (878,227€)
  • January 2020-December 2021: Developing Multilingual Literacies – Exploring the role of communities for literacy development in multilingual families: Sabine Little (University of Sheffield) (PI), Claudine Kirsch (University of Luxembourg), Joana Duarte (University of Groningen), Mirjam Günter-van der Meij (NHL Stenden) and Irina Usanova (University of Hamburg); EERA funding (5,000€)
  • February 2019-July 2021: Translanguaging Training Programme for Teachers Working with Language Minority Preschool Children in Luxembourg (TRANSLA). Dr. Gabrijela Aleksić (PI), Džoen Bebic-Crestany, Claudine Kirsch (local mentor). Funding: FNR Core Junior
  • January 2017-December 2022: Capitalising on Linguistic Diversity in Education (CALIDIE). Dr. Adelheid Hu (PI), 11 supervisors (of which Claudine Kirsch is one) and 11 PhD students
  • January 2017-December 2018: New Migration of Families from Greece to Europe (MIGREC). Dr. Claudine Kirsch (PI), Dimitra Tsagkogeorga. Funding: University of Luxembourg. International project with Prof. Panagiotopoulou (University of Cologne), Prof. Rosen (University of Cologne), Associate Prof. Chatzidaki (University of Crete), Claudine Kirsch)
  • May 2016-April 2019: Developing multilingual pedagogies in Early Childhood (MuLiPEC) Dr. Claudine Kirsch (PI), Dr. Katja Andersen, Dr. Gabrijela Aleksić, Simone Mortini, Laurence Di Letizia. Funding: FNR CORE and Ministry of National Education, Childhood and Youth. (457.786€)
  • July 2014-June 2016: Family Language Policies among Greek Migrants in Luxembourg (FLPAGL). Dr. Nikolaos Gogonas (PI) and Dr. Claudine Kirsch. Funding: FNR AFR
  • May 2014-December 2014: Multilingual Oracies (MULTORA). Dr. Claudine Kirsch. (PI) and Dr. Katja Andersen. Funding: Ministry of Family (24,200€)
  • September 2013-February 2017:  iTEO, a tool for learning and teaching languages (iTEO 2). Dr. Claudine Kirsch (PI), Dr. Gérard Gretsch (2013-2015), Laurence Di Letizia (2013-2015), Dr. Asuncion Bes (2016), Dr. Roberto Gomez (2014-2015). Funding: University of Luxembourg, Ministry of National Education, Childhood and Youth (334.157€)
  • January 2012-October 2012: Researching language acquisition with the tool iTEO (iTEO Pilot). Dr. Claudine Kirsch (PI) and Dr. Gérard Gretsch. University of Luxembourg


Research projects at Goldsmiths (University of London) and Luxembourg (prior to 2012)

  • October 2011-May 2012: Changing country, changing language. Dr. Claudine Kirsch. University of Luxembourg.
  • 2009-2011: Creativity in the community languages classroom: pedagogies and professional development. Dr. Jim Anderson (PI), Prof. Eve Gregory, Dr. Clare Kelly, Dr. Charmian Kenner, Dr. Claudine Kirsch, Dr. Ana Souza, Prof. Yangguang Chen and Yu-Chiao Chung. Goldsmiths, University of London. Funding: Nuffield project.
  • 2009-2011: Storytelling in modern language lessons in primary schools. Dr. Claudine Kirsch. Funding: Goldsmiths, University of London.
  • 2009-2010: Childhood bilingualism: Luxembourgish parents raising their children bilingually in England. Dr. Claudine Kirsch. Funding: University of London.
  • 2007-2008: The development of trainee teachers’ intercultural competence. Dr. Claudine Kirsch. Funding: Goldsmiths, University of London.
  • 2004-2007: New developments in teacher education and the benefits and challenges of the PGCE students’ month-long school experience in a foreign country. Dr. Claudine Kirsch. Funding: Goldsmiths, University of London.
  • 2001-2006: English children’s practices of learning foreign languages at home and at school and the development of their language learning strategies. Claudine Kirsch. Funding: ESRC.
  • 2001-2003: Luxembourgish children using and learning foreign languages at home and at school. Claudine Kirsch. Funding: ESRC.
  • 2000-2004: DECOTEC (Development of expertise in a collaborative open technologically enriched educational context). Gérard Gretsch (PI), Charles Max, Claudine Kirsch (2000-2001), Stammet Brigitte. University of Luxembourg.
  • 1996-1999: DECOPRIM I, II, III (Development of oral and written communication skills at primary school). I was a teacher-researcher. Funding: Ministry of Education (MENFP).
  • 1995-1996: DECOLAP (Development of oral and written communication skills at pre-school). I was a teacher-researcher Funding: Ministry of Education (MENFP).
  • 1992-1995: Differenzieren im offenen Unterricht I and Differenzieren im offenen Unterricht II’. ISERP.

Last updated on: 16 Mär 2022

Teaching responsibilities

  • Bachelor in Sciences of Education (BScE) (2012 -)
  • Master in Learning and Communication in Multilingual and Multicultural Contexts (2012-)
  • Doctoral School, transferrable skills training (2014 - )
  • Doctoral School in Humanities and Social Sciences (DSHSS) (2015 -)
  • DTU CALIDIE (2017 - 2021)
  • Bachelor in social Sciences and educational Sciences (BSSE) (2018 - 2020)

Last updated on: 17 Mär 2022

Supervision of PhD students

I currently supervise 2 students (of which two are FNR funded):

  • Valérie Kemp: A qualitative study on parent and child engagement in multiliteracy activities in creches in Luxembourg (15.07.2020 - predicted 14.07.2024) - funding through FNR CORE COMPARE
  • Mahdi Mowlaei Aghblagh: Children's experiences of multilingualism in Luxembourg at home, school and social media (01.03.2022 - predicted 28.02.2026) - AFR funding

I am a member of CET (comité de thèse) of 2 students:

  • Kevin Simoes Loureiro: The implementation of the plurilingual education policy in the Luxembourgish non-formal early childhood and care sector? A policy field analysis confronting perspectives from policy and practice level experts by using a mixed-method approach (01.07.2019 –  predicted 30.06.2023) - funding through FNR CALIDIE PRIDE
  • Peiru Bai: Plurilinguisme, représentations et identités des familles chinoises au Grand-Duché de Luxembourg : tensions entre héritage et intégration  (01.05.2018 – predicted 31.04.2022) - self-funded

 Completed PhD:

  • Dr. Melanie Noesen: Mehrsprachigkeit und Inklusion. Sprachlernzugänge durch Portfolioarbeit entwickeln (15.11.2014 – 15.05.2022, defence on 15 July 2022) - self-funded
  • Dr. Flavia Bley: (Trans)-local Language Learning Spaces of Three Newly Arrived Brazilian Preschool Children in Luxembourg: Two Multi-Sited Ethnographic Case Studies on the Supporting Structures of Their Parents, Teachers and Educators (15.10.2015 – 14.10.2021, defence on 14 December 2021) - self-funded
  • Dr. Simone Mortini: Emergent multilingual children's agency within translanguaging practices with peers and practitioners in formal and non-formal early childhood education settings in Luxembourg (15.07.2016 –  14.06.2021, defence on 4 October 2021) funding through FNR CORE MuLiPEC
  • Dr.  Sarah Degano: Understanding multilingual pupils’ translanguaging practices: a qualitative study in two primary schools (15.01.2017 –  14.01.2020, defence on 31 March 2021) funding through FNR CALIDIE PRIDE
  • Dr. Demosthenes Dimitrakoulakos, 2018. I was a CET member

I co-supervised 4 students with Prof. Dr. Eve Gregory at Goldsmiths, between 2008 and 2011.

Last updated on: 29 Aug 2022