School of Education, Communication and Language Sciences

Applied Linguistics

Applied Linguistics & Communication Research

Overview of Research

The work of the Applied Linguistics & Communication Research Group encompasses a range of research interests related to language and communication and the application to professional and everyday contexts.

Areas of Research

 

Our main areas of research expertise are:

Our researchers draw upon a wide variety of research approaches, including various forms of discourse and interaction analysis, corpus linguistics, multimodality, social psychology, quantitative statistical analysis, interview-based research, mixed methods, interventions and ethnographic fieldwork.

Within Newcastle University, the expertise of our staff is utilised in a number of research groups, such as, iLAB:learn, the Multimodal Analysis Research Group (MARG), the Language and Cognition group, Pro-Com and the Centre for Learning and Teaching (CfLaT).

Outside of Newcastle University, our staff are active in a range of national and international research and professional networks. We have research collaborators in Austria, China, Denmark, France, Germany, Japan, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Spain, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey and the United States. We are part of formal international research groups. These include the British Association of Applied Linguistics and International Association of Language and Social Psychology.

Our staff have published very widely in terms of journal articles, books and other media; details can be found on individual staff webpages below.

Current and recent large grants include:

  • Linguacuisine, a €324K Erasmus Plus KA2 Strategic Partnerships for Adult Education grant 2016-18 (Seedhouse).
  • Critical Skills for Life and Work (CSLW) cslw.eu Developing the Professional Intercultural Communicative Competence of Highly-Skilled Refugees £125K Erasmus Plus-funded project 2017-19 (Young).
  • Approaches and Tools for Internationalisation at Home (ATIAH) https://research.ncl.ac.uk/atiah/ Erasmus Plus-funded project 2016-18 (Schartner).
  • Video Enhanced Observation Europa, a €270K Erasmus Plus KA2 Strategic Partnerships for School Education grant 2015-17 (Seedhouse).
  • Propic, a €76,780 Erasmus Plus KA2 Strategic Partnerships for Higher Education grant 2017-20 (Seedhouse) http://www.propiceuropa.com/
  • Assistive communications technology for people living with dementia and their carers.  www.demtalk.org.uk. Economic and Social Research Council 2016 – 18 (Young) £25K.  

 

Applied Linguistics & Communication Research Group Staff

Kirsty Blewitt
Teaching Fellow in Cross-Cultural Com.

Email:
Telephone: 0191 208 8567

Dr Adam Brandt
Lecturer in Applied Linguistics

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5273

Dr Sara Ganassin
Lecturer in Applied Linguistics & Comm

Email:

Dr Spencer Hazel
Senior Lecturer in Applied Linguistics & Communication

Email:
Telephone: 0191 2086374

Saeede Haghi
Teaching Fellow in Applied Linguistics-TESOL

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5094

Dr Christopher Leyland
Lecturer in Applied Linguistics

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0)191 222 6000 (ext. 7384)

Dr Mei Lin
Senior Lecturer

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5070

Dr Elaine Lopez
Lecturer in Applied Linguistics and TESOL

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 6564

Dr Muge Satar Coen
Lecturer in Applied Linguistics and TESOL

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 7797

Dr Alina Schartner
Lecturer in Applied Linguistics

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0)191 208 6593

Professor Paul Seedhouse
Professor of Educational and Applied Linguistics

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 8873

Dr Peter Sercombe
Senior Lecturer in Applied Linguistics

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5657

Professor Steve Walsh
Professor of Applied Linguistics

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5094

Dr Tony Young
Reader in Applied Linguistics and Communication

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 7515

Language Education Research

We are interested in the acquisition, learning and teaching of second/additional languages.

We do this by advancing theory-grounded practical outcomes for second-language use, both in the classroom and outside it. Our research explores a range of topics, including how to inform teaching practice through models of second language/bilingual development, improving second language teacher education by using reflective practice, and understanding patterns of language use in learners and teachers through corpus and discourse analysis.

In our research, we make use of a variety of quantitative and qualitative data, methods and analyses, including experimental designs, classroom interventions and video recordings of language teaching and learning activities, such as classrooms, student group work, online chat, lesson planning, and innovative technologies like the digital kitchen. Members work in these research groups: the Multimodal Analysis Research Group (MARG), the Language and Cognition group, Pro-Com.

Our work looks at phenomena such as:

  • second language acquisition, learning and assessment
  • language teaching and teacher education
  • classroom discourse
  • the language of classroom management and language teaching
  • multilingualism
  • critical and creative thinking in foreign and second language education
  • language learning and migration
  • classroom interactional competence
  • language planning and policy

Current and recent research projects include:

  • Digital kitchens for language learning (Seedhouse) 
  • Video Enhanced Observation Europa, a €270K Erasmus Plus KA2 Strategic Partnerships for School Education grant (Seedhouse).
  • cslw.eu Critical Skills for Life and Work (CSLW) Developing the Professional Intercultural Communicative Competence of Highly-Skilled Refugees Erasmus Plus-funded project 2017-19 (Young, Schartner, Ganassin)
  • Which English?, with a focus on language varieties around the world.  British Council English Language Teaching Award  (Young, Schartner and Walsh)
  • Reflective practice in English Language Teaching (Walsh) Pro-Com
  • An examination of experienced online language teachers’ multimodal instruction-giving practices (Satar) Faculty Research Funding (2018-19)
  • The acquisition and instruction of the English article system (Lopez)
  • Bilingual cognition (Lin)
  • Integration of teaching critical and creative thinking into English curriculum in higher education and primary schools (Lin)

Language Education staff

Language Education Research

Kirsty Blewitt
Teaching Fellow in Cross-Cultural Com.

Email:
Telephone: 0191 208 8567

Dr Spencer Hazel
Senior Lecturer in Applied Linguistics & Communication

Email:
Telephone: 0191 2086374

Saeede Haghi
Teaching Fellow in Applied Linguistics-TESOL

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5094

Dr Christopher Leyland
Lecturer in Applied Linguistics

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0)191 222 6000 (ext. 7384)

Dr Mei Lin
Senior Lecturer

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5070

Dr Elaine Lopez
Lecturer in Applied Linguistics and TESOL

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 6564

Dr Muge Satar Coen
Lecturer in Applied Linguistics and TESOL

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 7797

Professor Paul Seedhouse
Professor of Educational and Applied Linguistics

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 8873

Dr Peter Sercombe
Senior Lecturer in Applied Linguistics

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5657

Professor Steve Walsh
Professor of Applied Linguistics

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5094

Intercultural Communication Research

Our research interests lie in challenging ‘essentialist’ notions of culture. We see ‘culture’ as fluid, not tightly bounded, as well as being contestable and dynamic.

Much of our teaching and research adopts post-structural, interpretive perspectives on ‘culture’. This necessitates detailed, contextualised investigations of how cultural groupings are socially accomplished. Members work in these research groups: the Multimodal Analysis Research Group (MARG), and Pro-Com.

We look at this through the actions and interactions of:

  • professionals and their various types of clients
  • groups coalesced around ethnicity, gender or social status, for example
  • those from multilingual backgrounds

We are interested in communication in intercultural and international settings; sociolinguistics, with a particular focus on code-mixing processes; language maintenance and change among minority groups, and the causes of these; and language policy in Southeast Asia.

We do this by exploring intergroup and interpersonal communication from intercultural perspectives, and investigating video recordings of interactions in institutional settings such as international business and other workplaces. Members of our group have also conducted research among ethnically minor groups in insular Southeast Asia, particularly (but not only) on the island of Borneo, to try and understand the processes that uphold maintenance of groups’ languages and cultural practices, as well as those that stimulate language and culture change, along with describing forms of adaptation that occur.

Our work looks at phenomena such as:

  • English as a lingua franca, or global language of communication
  • Language attitudes and ways in which these are encoded, informally and / or through official discourse, and how these stimulate processes of maintenance and change
  • The internationalisation of higher education, in particular the student experience
  • Intercultural transitions, and the social psychology of communication
  • The interactions found in culturally and linguistically dynamic settings such as international workplaces, Higher Education, the Arts etc., especially in multilingual and lingua franca settings.

Current and recent research projects include:

  • Language as key to perceptual diversity: An interdisciplinary approach to the senses (Sercombe) (http://www.rj.se/en/) .
  • the Erasmus+ funded project Approaches and Tools for Internationalisation at Home (ATIAH) (Schartner) (https://research.ncl.ac.uk/atiah/)
  • cslw.eu Critical Skills for Life and Work (CSLW) Developing the Professional Intercultural Communicative Competence of Highly-Skilled Refugees £125K Erasmus Plus-funded project 2017-19 (Young)
  • Person-Centred Communication and the care of people living with dementia:  Exploring the perspectives of medical students in the UK and Malaysia.  Economic and Social Research Council and International Partnership Fund £14K 2017 – 19 (Young). 
  • Enhancing the Quality of the International Student and Staff Mobility Experience: A Multiregional Enquiry in Thai Higher Education. £68K Newton Fund Advanced Fellowship 2016 – 18 (Young)
  • Transient Multilingual Communities and the Formation of Social and Linguistic Norms (TMC), The Danish Council for Independent Research, Humanities http://cip.ku.dk/english/research/research_activities/transient-multilingual-communities/ (Hazel)
  • Cultural and Linguistic Practices in the International University http://calpiu.dk/ruc/Home.html (CALPIU) (Hazel)
  • An International Partnership funded project exploring attitudes towards dementia and person-centred care in the UK and Malaysia (Schartner, Young)

Intercultural Communication staff

Inter-Cultural Communication Research

Kirsty Blewitt
Teaching Fellow in Cross-Cultural Com.

Email:
Telephone: 0191 208 8567

Dr Adam Brandt
Lecturer in Applied Linguistics

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5273

Dr Sara Ganassin
Lecturer in Applied Linguistics & Comm

Email:

Dr Spencer Hazel
Senior Lecturer in Applied Linguistics & Communication

Email:
Telephone: 0191 2086374

Dr Alina Schartner
Lecturer in Applied Linguistics

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0)191 208 6593

Dr Peter Sercombe
Senior Lecturer in Applied Linguistics

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5657

Dr Tony Young
Reader in Applied Linguistics and Communication

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 7515

Social and Professional Interaction Research

We look at social and professional interaction in institutional and non-institutional settings.

We are interested in understanding – and improving – communication in language learning, intercultural and professional contexts.

We do this by examining how language and social interaction is managed in order to perform social and professional activities, to achieve understanding, and to deal with miscommunication. We examine interaction in a wide range of real-world settings such as workplaces, clinical settings, interactions involving people living with dementia, the Arts, educational settings, counselling services, business meetings, call centres, shops and markets, and on the telephone.

For example, within professional settings we uncover how the organisation of interaction is related to the institutional goals. Close examination of the detail of the interaction can reveal issues and problems which can then be tackled through policy or training. Another area of interest is the rich multimodality of face-to-face interaction, and we are particularly interested in international settings, where people come from different language or cultural backgrounds.

We examine these issues and settings through the naturalistic observation of human social interaction, using video recordings of real-life communicative events as data, and analyse data using a range of micro-analytic research methodologies, including interaction analysis, ethnomethodological conversation analysis, membership categorisation analysis, discourse analysis, and interactional sociolinguistics. Members work in these research groups: the Multimodal Analysis Research Group (MARG), and Pro-Com.

Our work looks at phenomena such as:

  • second language learning and use
  • professional and interactional competence
  • English as a lingua franca
  • multilingualism
  • professional interaction

Current and recent research projects include:

  • Multilingual theatre rehearsals  (Hazel)
  • Language and Interaction in the Internationalised Corporation (LINGCORP) (Hazel)
  • Interaction in IELTS Speaking Tests  - 4 research reports (Seedhouse) 
  • Haggling in tourist marketplaces (Brandt)
  • Language classrooms (Seedhouse, Walsh)
  • Language speaking tests (Seedhouse, Leyland)
  • Lesson planning meetings (Leyland)
  • One-to-one writing tutorials at a university (Leyland, Brandt)
  • Multilingual university meetings (Hazel, Brandt)
  • Grant of £26.5K from British Council IELTS Research Programme on ‘Which specific features of candidate talk do examiners orient to when taking scoring decisions?’ Paul Seedhouse PI; Muge Satar Co-I: 2018-20.
  • Creative arts interventions for people living with dementia (Brandt, Leyland, Hazel)

Social Interaction staff

Social and Professional Interaction Research

Kirsty Blewitt
Teaching Fellow in Cross-Cultural Com.

Email:
Telephone: 0191 208 8567

Dr Adam Brandt
Lecturer in Applied Linguistics

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5273

Dr Spencer Hazel
Senior Lecturer in Applied Linguistics & Communication

Email:
Telephone: 0191 2086374

Dr Christopher Leyland
Lecturer in Applied Linguistics

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0)191 222 6000 (ext. 7384)

Dr Muge Satar Coen
Lecturer in Applied Linguistics and TESOL

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 7797

Professor Paul Seedhouse
Professor of Educational and Applied Linguistics

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 8873

Dr Peter Sercombe
Senior Lecturer in Applied Linguistics

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5657

Professor Steve Walsh
Professor of Applied Linguistics

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5094

Language & Technology Research

We have a long history of research in the area of language learning and teaching using technology.

The iLab:Learn initiative is a long-term joint venture started in 2009 between Applied Linguistics specialists in ECLS and the Newcastle School of Computing Science, designed to develop the next generation of educational technology.

 

ECLS and the HaSS Faculty contributed funding for space and installations whilst Computing Science contributed digital technology and expertise. The facility and the collaboration that it supported were instrumental in attracting the following significant grants: the initiative was selected for an EPSRC impact case study and won the European Language Label award in 2012:

  • Language Learning in the Wild’, 2010-2012. Grant of £156K from the EPSRC Digital Economy Programme (Seedhouse)
  • Grant of €400K received from the EU Lifelong Learning Programme for project ‘Learning Languages, Cultures and Cuisines in Digital Kitchens’ 2011-2014 (Seedhouse)
  • Linguacuisine, a €324K Erasmus Plus KA2 Strategic Partnerships for Adult Education grant 2016-18 (Seedhouse)
  • Video Enhanced Observation Europa, a €270K Erasmus Plus KA2 Strategic Partnerships for School Education grant 2015-17 (Seedhouse) 
  • Propic, a €76,780 Erasmus Plus KA2 Strategic Partnerships for Higher Education grant 2017-20 (Seedhouse) 
  • IELTS VEO, a £26.5K IELTS grant from British Council 2018-20 (Seedhouse & Satar)

The main focus has been on exploring ways in which technology can help effective language learning; describing and analysing the language promoted by the use of technology; studying foreign language learning and teaching in technology enhanced and online environments; and investigating issues in second language learning.

We do this by collecting multiple sources of data such as recordings of language learners’ and pre-service teachers’ online communication, interviews and questionnaires, video- and audio-recordings of classrooms and other professional settings and helping teachers to analyse these recordings using a range of tools and procedures. Analytical techniques include multimodal analysis, content analysis, social network analysis, thematic analysis, VEO (Video Enhanced Observation), stimulated recall, interaction analysis, discourse analysis and quantitative methods. We also examine how languages are learned and taught via computer-mediated communication, telecollaboration, blended learning and distance education.  

Through dialogic reflection and using technology, teachers (and other professionals such as doctors, engineers and architects) gain closer understandings of their professional communication and improve their workplace practices.

Our work looks at phenomena such as:

  • collaborative online interaction and language learning
  • second language learning and teaching in technology enhanced environments
  • reflective practice for second language teacher education
  • social presence
  • multimodality and digital literacies

Current and recent research projects include:

  • SETTVEO, looking at communication and reflective practice in global English language teaching contexts (Walsh)
  • An examination of experienced online language teachers’ multimodal instruction-giving practices (Satar) Faculty Research Funding (2018-19)
  • Robotics and Social Interaction Expertise (ROSIE) (Hazel, Leyland, Brandt)
  • Virtual exchange for teacher education; a focus on critical digital literacy (Satar)

Language and Technology staff

digital kitchen
Digital Kitchen

Language and Technology Research

Dr Adam Brandt
Lecturer in Applied Linguistics

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5273

Dr Spencer Hazel
Senior Lecturer in Applied Linguistics & Communication

Email:
Telephone: 0191 2086374

Dr Christopher Leyland
Lecturer in Applied Linguistics

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0)191 222 6000 (ext. 7384)

Dr Muge Satar Coen
Lecturer in Applied Linguistics and TESOL

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 7797

Professor Paul Seedhouse
Professor of Educational and Applied Linguistics

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 8873

Professor Steve Walsh
Professor of Applied Linguistics

Email:
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5094

Seminars

Applied Linguistics Seminar Series

Programme Schedule

Coming up in September!