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Special Interest Groups (SIGs)

The American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) encourages members with shared interests to network and share information within the larger structure of ACTFL. To facilitate these activities, ACTFL has established Special Interest Groups (SIGs) to provide continuous networking and information sharing on a specific topic or area of interest to a subset of ACTFL’s overall membership. SIGs operate under the aegis of ACTFL and are a vital component of ACTFL's member service activities.

SIGs operate year-round through the ACTFL community, newsletters, webinars, and sessions at the ACTFL Annual Convention & World Languages Expo. The Basic membership level includes one free SIG, membership levels of Plus and above include two free SIGs. Each SIG after the allotted free amount is $5 per year.

To add a SIG to your existing ACTFL membership, submit a request or contact us at

Currently, ACTFL has the following SIGs:

African-American Students - provides a public forum for the discussion of issues relating to African American students and their needs as language learners.

Arabic – serves as a network for and information sharing among Arabic language and culture instructors. 

Cinema (Film) - seeks to respond to the increasing interest in and use of films in language instruction, acquisition and assessment.

Community Colleges - provides leadership and cohesiveness to the teaching of foreign languages at the community college level.

Comprehension-based Communicative Language Teaching - seeks to foster among members a better understanding of the role of input and comprehension in the development of language proficiency.

Critical and Social Justice Approaches - promotes and supports critical and social justice approaches in language instruction.

Distance Learning - provides a forum for the discussion of strategies, program models, and the many challenges facing distance learning educators.

Heritage Languages – represent the concerns of and provide a network for the heritage languages teaching community. 

Immersion - To expand opportunities for dialogue, information exchange, professional development and research initiatives among ACTFL’s dual language/immersion educators who work in and advocate for school-based, preK-16 language immersion programs throughout the U.S.

Korean – provides a forum for discussion of Korean teaching, a networking system and a voice for Korean teachers.

Language Learning for Children - promotes and supports early language programs in the U.S. through advocacy, networking and articulation.

Less Commonly Taught Languages (LCTL) - promotes the learning, knowledge and needs of LCTLs and the development of policies and the sharing of best teaching practices.

Modern Greek - provides a forum for the Modern Greek language and culture teaching community.

Portuguese - promotes and support Portuguese programs in the U.S.A. through advocacy, networking and articulation.

Research - provides leadership in conducting research to inform instructional practices and build theory, as well as demonstrate how research is shaped by knowledge and theory generated from instructional practices.

Small Undergraduate German Programs - promotes discussion of the issues and opportunities surrounding small German programs at colleges and universities.

Spanish for Heritage Learners - concerned with the teaching and learning of Spanish for individuals who have a home background in the language.

Teacher Development - provides a forum for the discussion of foreign language teacher preparation, both at the preservice and the inservice levels.

Teaching & Learning of Culture - encourages a better understanding of the teaching of culture and its place in the foreign language curriculum.

What Our Members Are Saying

I cannot tell you how invaluable these have been for me in my standards work with my district.  I have shared portions of them with my teachers as part of our summer professional development and I am also using the information and philosophies with my curriculum writers this summer.  I feel compelled to thank you all once again for your forethought in providing this amazing resource to all of us in such a 21st Century format!

Sandy Harvey, World Language Coordinator, Fort Bend ISD, Texas