Subject Name

What is CLIL? The CLIL Module


Master in Bilingual Education
ECTS Credits
Year and four month period
First year, first four month period
Type of subject Compulsory


What is CLIL? It  a mixture of many methods and techniques that have been combined  to form a system of teaching content through a second language. CLIL- Content Language Integrated Learning is comprised of 4 c’s: Content, Communication, Cognitive and Culture.

CLIL is a method that is used for teaching content in a second language. Since all teaching is based on some type of content, general English teachers and teachers of other foreign languages can use CLIL as well.

There is a lot of  theory behind CLIL, and it will be made available to the participants of this course. However, focus will be placed on simplifying the theory and applying it directly to our current classroom situations. The information will be practical and useful.

While learning the components of CLIL, a techniques and methods “toolbox” will be constructed and made available to all participants. This is a must for being prepared to teach in a CLIL format. The participants will be exposed to the best that traditional methodology has to offer as well as the latest and upcoming methods and techniques.

CLIL is a new way of thinking about teaching. A willingness to try new things in the classroom is key.


Basic Competences

  • BC6. Achieve and understand the knowledge that provides a base and an opportunity to be original in the development and implementation of the ideas, often in a research context.
  • BC7. That the students are able to apply the knowledge acquired and their ability to solve the problems in new or not very well known environments among wider contexts (or multidisciplinary) related to their field of study.
  • BC8. That the students are able to integrate knowledge and face the complexity of judging from an information, that being incomplete or limited, includes reflections about the social and ethic responsibilities linked to the application of their knowledge and judgements.
  • BC9. That the students know how to communicate their conclusions and knowledge and reasons that support them to specialized and non-specialized audiences in a clear and unequivocal way.
  • BC10. That the students have the abilities to learn that allow them to continue studying in such a way that will be self-directed or self-sufficient..

General Competences

  • GC1. Know the specific problems of teaching in a foreign language both linguistically and culturally, in an environment of bilingual education.
  • GC2. Develop skills to promote an atmosphere that ease learning and interaction among students.
  • GC3. Transmit social and cultural values in accordance with the multilingual and multicultural context.
  • GC4. Understand the legislation and regulations concerning the organization and management of bilingual centers.
  • GC5. Understand the effectiveness and necessity of promoting the integrated teaching of a foreign language and the own contents of the non-linguistic discipline.
  • GC6. Analyze critically the performance of teaching work and good practices using assessment models and quality indicators.
  • GC8. Be competent users of L2 in all the skills necessary for teaching.

Specific Competences

  • SC2. Design an integrated curriculum in their area of expertise with linguistic contents.
  • SC3. Create and adapt learning materials for bilingual education considering the educational level of students according to the CEFR.
  • SC4. Develop, plan and guideline the contents of discipline in bilingual environments according to the formal format CLIL Module.
  • SC7. Add new teaching strategies and new information technologies to bilingual education for the design of new learning environments in the classroom.
  • SC8. Know the organization of bilingual education centers at all levels and the diversity of actions that includes their operation.
  • SC9. Understand the organization of a bilingual classroom: activities, teaching material, training plan.
  • SC11. Develop and implement teaching methodologies adapted to the diversity of students in a bilingual environment.
  • SC12. Be able to foster the application of different techniques and procedures to develop the students’ abilities.
  • SC13. Know and apply the advantages of the communicative approach and task-based learning for linguistic interaction in two languages.

Transversal Competences

  • TC1. Analyze reflexively and criticize the most important issues of today's society for a coherent decision-making.
  • TC2. Identify new technologies as teaching tools for communication exchange in the development of processes of investigation and group learning.
  • TC3. Apply the knowledge and skills acquired by the studies to real cases and in an environment of workgroups in companies or organizations.
  • TC4. Acquire the ability to work independently, promoting the organization and encouraging independent learning.


Unit 1: Introduction to content-based language learning
History and Background
Why language and content
Content-Language Based Methods / CLIL

Unit 2: Introduction to CLIL: standards and competences
The 4 C’s of CLIL: Competence in Content, Communication, Cognitive, and Culture
Knowing the standards: LOMCE
CLIL Teacher competences

Unit 3: CLIL 4C’s–First C is Content
What is content?
Where does content come from?
Can general English teachers use CLIL?

Unit 4: First C – Content: input
Surveying your Content
What is Rich Input?
Choosing Supplemental Material

Unit 5: CLIL 4C’s – Second C: Communication
Content vs. interpersonal language? CALP /BICS of /for/through
Questioning Techniques in CLIL
Communication Techniques, cognates, circumlocution

Unit 6: Second C – Communication– Teacher’s Use of English in CLIL

Unit 7: CLIL 4C’s: Third C–Cognitive: introduction to Cognitive Theory and Techniques
Background on Cognitive Theory
Why is Cognitive Theory important in education?
Cognitive related methods for educators

Unit 8: CLIL 4C’s: Third C–Cognitive: Activation of Prior Knowledge
What is Prior Knowledge?
How do you activate PK?
Choosing age and level appropriate materials form activation of PK.

Unit 9: CLIL 4C’s: Third C–Cognitive. Learning to Learn: What does “learning to learn” mean?
Changing practices and standards
Critical and Creative Thinking: Bloom’s Taxonomy
How do we include “learning to learn” in our lessons?

Unit 10: Techniques Toolbox I
Total Physical Response
Multiple Intelligences
Cooperative Learning

Unit 11: Techniques Toolbox II
Task-Based Learning
Skill-Based Learning
Project-Based Learning

Unit 12: What is Culture in CLIL?
What –culture, community, citizenship (local and global)
Why –life skills, empathy, respect, diversity, tolerance, multiple perspectives
How –UNESCO, ask an expert, apprenticeship, museums, European agenda, LOMCE

Unit 13: Technology and CLIL
Fulfilling the Digital Competence Standard
Incorporating ICTS into CLIL lessons
CLIL Culture Digital –Citizenship

Unit 14: CLIL plans and assessment
Output and Assessment
Teacher’s Notes
Lesson Plans

Unit 15: Complements for CLIL
Chunking –Mnemonic Devices
Jazz Chants
Whole Brain Teaching



The different tasks and activities programmed during the semester have been developed with the goal of adapting the learning process to the different capabilities, necessities and interests of the students.

The activities included in the subject are:

  • Assignments.In your weekly program you will see the different kind of tasks designed for the course such as practice cases, research, critical thinking and, also, you will find information about how to complete them and when to send them to your teacher.
  • Participation in events. During the course you will be participating in different events. Some of those events are attendance to online classes, forums, self-evaluation tests.

In the weekly program you can find the specific tasks you need to complete in this subject.
Descarga el pdf de la programación

These activities are combined with the following aspects:

  • Personal Study
  • Tutoring. The tutoring class can be implemented through different tools and means. During the course of the subject, the teacher-tutor plans the individual tutoring on specific days for the resolution of academic-oriented doubts through “Consultation sessions”. Supplementing these sessions, students have also available the “Ask your teacher” forum through which they can formulate questions and check the corresponding answers on general aspects of the subject.  Due to the very nature of the media used, there are no fixed schedules for the students.
  • Mandatory on-site final exam

The hours dedicated to each activity are detailed as follows:

Attendance to virtual classes
Master lessons
Basic material study
Additional resources readings
Task and practice cases and self-evaluation test
Collaborative work, forums, debates, etc.
Attendance to the exam


You can personalize your study plan choosing the type of activity that best matches your profile. The tutor will advise you and help you elaborate your study plan. S/he will always be available to guide throughout the course.


Basic bibliography

The section Basic Bibliography is essential for the course. If any document (reading, article,…) is not available in the virtual classroom, you will have to find it by other means: UNIR bookshop, virtual library…

The necessary texts for the study of this subject had been elaborated by UNIR and are available in a digital format for consultation, download and print in the virtual classroom.

Unit 1

  • Coyle, D., Hood, P. & Marsh D. (2010). Content and Language Integrated Learning (pp. 1-13). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Available at the virtual campus with a CEDRO* license.

 Unit 2

  • Cano, W. (2013). Manual CLIL para Centros Bilingües. Logroño: Universidad Internacional de La Rioja.

Available at the virtual campus with a CEDRO* license.

Unit 3

  • Ikeda, M. (2013). Does CLIL Work for Japanese Secondary School Students?
Potential for the ‘Weak’ Version of CLIL. International CLIL Research Journal, 2 (1), 31-32. Retrieved from: 

Unit 4

 Unit 7

 Unit 8

Unit 9

 Unit 10

  • Richards, J. C. (2014). Approaches and Methods in Language Teaching (pp. 277-283). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press

Available at the virtual campus with a CEDRO* license

  • Richards, J. C. (2014). Approaches and Methods in Language Teaching (pp. 230-238). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press

Available at the virtual campus with a CEDRO* license

  • Richards, J. C. (2014). Approaches and Methods in Language Teaching (pp. 244-253). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press

Available at the virtual campus with a CEDRO* license


Additional bibliography

You can also find useful information in these reference books.

Krashen, S.D. (1981). Second Language Acquisition and Second Language Learning. Oxford: Pergamon.

Chamot, A.U., & O’Malley, J.M. (1994). The CALLA handbook: Implementing the cognitive academic language learning approach. Reading, MA: Addison Wesley.

Cambridge ESOL (2009). Teaching Knowledge Test (TKT) and Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL). Handbook for Teachers. Cambridge: University of Cambridge. Retrieved from:  

Tomlinson, B. (2012). Materials development for language learning and teaching. Language Teaching, 45(2), 143–179.

Ausubel, D. P. (1962). A subsumption theory of meaningful verbal learning and retention. The Journal of General Psychology, 66, 213-244.

Gardner, H. (1983). Frames of Mind: The Theory of Multiple Intelligences. New York: Basic Books. (Introduction available at:

Asher, J. J. (1969). The Total Physical Response Approach to Second Language Learning. The Modern Language Journal, 53 (1), 3–17.

Education Week. (2011). Technology in Education. Retrieved from:

Graham, C. (1978). Jazz Chants: rhythms of American English for students of English as a Second Language, 1. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Biffle, C. (2013). Whole Brain Teaching for Challenging Kids (and the Rest of Your Class, Too!). Yucaipa, CA: Whole Brain Teaching LLC.


Evaluation and assessment

The evaluation system is based on the following numerical chart:

0 - 4, 9



5,0 - 6,9



7,0 - 8,9



9,0 - 10



The grade is made up of two components:


On-site final exam (60%). At the end of the semester, you need to assist a mandatory on-site final exam. You need to pass the final exam so the grade obtained from the assignments (continuous assessment) is summed up to the final grade of the subject. 

Continuous assessment (40%): this type of assessment will be measured through the different assignments you need to complete during the course:

    • Active participation and involvement in forums, online classes.
    • Tasks. The completion of the different activities the students need to send through our virtual classroom such as research, critical thinking, practice cases.
    • Self-evaluation tests. At the end of each unit, students will find a short quiz which will help the students to check the knowledge acquired during the course.

Remember that you can check the points (value) of each assignment in the weekly program.

Take into account that the sum of the grades of the assignments included in the continuous assessment is 6 points. You can do as many as you want to until a maximum grade of 4 points (which is the maximum grade you will be obtaining in the continuous assessment). In the weekly program, you can find the grade of each assignment. .

Assessment method
Min. Score
Max. Score
Participation in forums, classes, etc.
Task, practice cases and activities
Self-evaluation test
On-site final exam


Bear in mind…
That if you decide to only take the final exam, you will need to have 5 points out of 6 to pass the subject.


María Rodríguez Rodríguez

Education: BA in English Philology. MA Education. PhD in Philosophy and Language Sciences.

Professional experience: Professor in Applied Linguistics, CLIL and English Teaching at the Autonomous University of Madrid.
Mentor for English teachers at the University of Manchester.
Spanish teacher for postgraduate students at the University of Liverpool.

Lines of research: CLIL, Bilingal education.


Orientación para el estudio

Studying online means you can organize your study as you wish, as long as you meet the due dates of the different assignments (activities, tasks and tests). In order to help you, we propose the following steps:

  1. From our online platform you will have access to each of the subjects you are enrolled. Apart from this, the virtual classroom of Lo que necesitas saber antes de empezar (All you need to know before starting). In this section, you have available all the documents on how to use the different tools included in the virtual classroom, how a subject is organized and you will also have the possibility to organize your study plan with the tutor.
  2. Do not forget to check the weekly program. You will see which part of the content of the course you have to work on every week.
  3. After knowing your work for the week, go to Temas in your virtual classroom. There, you will have access to the study material (theory and practice) from the unit you need to study throughout the week.
  4. Start by reading the Key ideas of each unit, there you will find the specific study material and it will help you understand the most important points of the unit. Afterwards, check out the sections Specially Recommended and More Information where you will find more resources in order to deepen on the topic of the unit. .
  5. Devote some time to the practical cases and tasks in the subject (assignments and test). Remember that in your weekly program you find all the information related to the schedule for each assignment and the maximum grade you can obtain in each of them.
  6. We strongly recommend you to participate in the Events of the course (online classes, forums….). To know the precise schedule of the events, you need to check the communications tools in the virtual platform. Your teacher and tutor will inform you on the updates of the course.
In the virtual classroom of Lo que necesitas saber antes de empezar (All you need to know before starting) you will always find available information on the structure of the units and information on their sections

Remember that in Lo que necesitas saber antes de empezar (All you need to know before starting) you can check how the different tools of the virtual classroom work: email, forum, online classes, sending the tasks, etc.

Please, take into account the following tips…

  • Whatever you study plan is, go often to the virtual classroom so that you are always up to date about the course and you are in contact with your teacher and your tutor.
  • Remember you are not alone: send an email to your tutor if you have any doubt. If you attend the online classes, you can also ask your teacher about the contents of the unit. Also, you can always write your doubts and questions about  the contents in the Forum of each subject (Ask the teacher).
  • Be active and participate!  Whenever it is possible, attend the online classes and take part in the forums. The exchange of information, opinions, ideas and resources enrich us and the course.
  • And, remember, you are studying online: your effort and perseverance are the key element to obtain good results. Don’t leave everything to the last minute!!!