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English language and linguistics research

Departmental staff research interests cover the interrelated areas of sociolinguistics, psycholinguistics, stylistics, pragmatics, social media discourse, and intercultural communication.

We research language at different levels aiming to gain an in-depth grasp of its intricate nature as a human faculty as well as its diversity as a social and cultural phenomenon.

Our research feeds directly to our learning and teaching curriculum and delivery via the Special Study modules and the Dissertation Project where students can explore a topic in an area of our expertise. Currently, our staff specialises in the following areas: 

  • second language vocabulary
  • bilingualism
  • language aptitude
  • intercultural advertising
  • language and the media
  • sociocultural linguistics
  • narratology and personal narratives including personal and trauma experiences
  • stylistics (literary linguistics)
  • pragmatics and relevance theory
  • prosody and meaning
  • electronically-mediated communication
  • acquisition of co-speech gesture in typically developing children (monolingual and bilingual)
  • atypical development of co-speech gesture
  • babysign
  • use of gesture with acquired language disorders
  • processing and use of co-speech gesture in adults


Facilities include a computer lab which is specially set up with Sanako software, which enables the tutor to direct the class eg with listenings which are stored on the system or to leave students to work alone or in pairs or small groups, while at the same time to be able to listen in. Students can record and listen back to their own speaking individually or in pairs or small groups. You can save the files and listen to the recordings again at a later date - even with other software. 

Masters by research or MPhil/PhD

We welcome applications from students interested in pursuing a Masters by Research or MPhil/PhD in an approved research topic within the areas of department staff expertise. We also welcome expressions of interest from researchers in the areas of linguistics studied in the department.

Please contact Paul Booth for further details.

Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
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