Linguistica Educativa e bisogni speciali
Origini e stato dell’arte della ricerca italiana
This chapter provides an overview of the studies on Special Educational Needs (SEN) conducted in Italy in the field of Educational Linguistics (EL). The first part analyses the papers produced between 2008 and 2019. The results show that EL research on SEN has grown quantitatively and diversified the types of SEN being studied, ranging from sensory and intellectual disability to socio-cultural disadvantages. The second part discusses early studies within the field of EL, dating back to 1970s, including some pioneering experimental reports whose results are in line with recent trends in cognitive linguistic research. Overall, data show that EL research on SEN is neither a recent phenomenon nor a marginal area of studies. Therefore, since general research on SEN has been promoting an interdisciplinary approach, EL should play a major role when the issues of language learning in formal education are taken into consideration.