Peter Sercombe presents at Hunting-Gathering conference in Vienna

Peter Sercombe recently attended the ‘Eleventh Conference on Hunting and Gathering Societies’ (CHAGS), in Vienna, giving two presentations related to his interests in language and communication in hunting-gathering communities.


He presented in two panels: In the first – ‘Is hunter-Gatherer Kinship Special and (how) Does It Change? Perspectives from Anthropology, Linguistics, History and Beyond‘ – Peter’s paper (‘The Changing Face of Penan Nomenclature’), described and attempted to explain decline in the use of Penan teknonymy and necronymy.

Continue reading Peter Sercombe presents at Hunting-Gathering conference in Vienna

Peter Sercombe research grant for project on language and perceptions

Peter SercombePeter Sercombe is a recent successful co-applicant to the Bank of Sweden’s Tercentenary Foundation for a grant of around  €1.25 million. The grant will fund a large project, involving universities from around Europe and led by Niclas Burenhult (Lund University, Sweden), entitled ‘Language as key to perceptual diversity: an interdisciplinary approach to the senses’.

Continue reading Peter Sercombe research grant for project on language and perceptions

Alan Firth and Adam Brandt to present at first talk in Applied Linguistics Seminar Series

The first talk in the Applied Linguistics Seminar Series will take place tomorrow, Tuesday 13 October, at 4-5pm.

Alan Firth and Adam Brandt will be presenting their research on haggling in Bangkok. Click on the poster below for further details.

ALC seminar series - Firth and Brandt talk (photo)

The full schedule for this academic year’s Seminar Series can be seen here.


Applied Linguistics Seminar Series starts again next week!

Every year, the Applied Linguistics & Communication team organise a series of lectures from leading researchers in the field of Applied Linguistics. The series for this academic year was organised by Rachelle Vessey, and the programme can be seen below (click for larger image).

Applied Linguistics Seminar Series 2015-16 schedule

Continue reading Applied Linguistics Seminar Series starts again next week!

Paul Seedhouse leads ‘Video-Enhanced Observation’ project, funded by EU

paulseedhouseA team of researchers, led by Paul Seedhouse, has recently been awarded €270K from the ‘Erasmus Plus KA2 Strategic Partnerships for School Education grant’. The project, which also includes Paul Miller and Jon Haines (School of ECLS, Newcastle University), brings together six partners from five countries, and aims to improve the quality and efficiency of education and training by using ‘Video Enhanced Observation‘ (VEO), an innovative technological approach to support initial teacher training and continuing professional development.


Continue reading Paul Seedhouse leads ‘Video-Enhanced Observation’ project, funded by EU

MARG schedule for 2015-16 semester 1

This semester’s MARG data session schedule is now set! As ever, we have a wide range of exciting interactional contexts for us to examine, analyse and discuss. Over the course of the coming semester, staff and students will be presenting their audio-video data, typically from second language and/or international settings, for collaborative analyses and discussion.

MARG schedule 2015-16 sem 1 photo

As ever, MARG data sessions take place during term-time on Wednesdays at 4-6pm. This academic year, all data sessions will take place in KGVI Building, room 2.11. Email MARG co-ordinator Kirsty Blewitt for further details.

We will doubtless have more updates about MARG in the weeks and months to come. You can read our first blog post about MARG here.


About Micro-Analysis Research Group (MARG)

marg logo

MARG (pronounced ‘marge’, perhaps confusingly!) began in the School of ECLS way back in spring 2007. At that time, the newly-arrived Alan Firth and Chris Jenks (now of University of South Dakota) decided that the School should take more advantage of the growing team of researchers and students interested in language, discourse and social interaction. Along with Paul Seedhouse and Steve Walsh, the team began to meet on a weekly basis, along with PhD students, to jointly analyse pieces of audio/video data of real life spoken interaction.

marg1In the ten years since, MARG has grown in size and stature, now being regularly attended by 15-20 staff and students from the school and other parts of the university. MARG also regularly welcomes visitors from other universities, both in the UK and overseas, and has developed a worldwide reputation for being an exciting forum for the collaborative analysis of social interaction, particularly in settings related to second language learning and use, and typically from the research approach of ethnomethodological conversation analysis. Continue reading About Micro-Analysis Research Group (MARG)

Adam Brandt and ALC students attend HUMAN workshop and conference in Ankara, Turkey


Last month, Adam Brandt and ALC research students, Nur Binti Abdullah and Kazuki Hata, attended the ‘Social Interaction and Applied Linguistics PGR Conference and Workshop 2015 at Hacettepe University in Ankara, Turkey. The events were organised by members of HUMAN (Hacettepe University Micro-Analysis Network), including former ALC students Olcay Sert and Hatice Ergul, and involved leading researchers and research students interested in language and social interaction.

Organisers Ufuk Balaman and Olcay Sert, alongside Evelyne Berger

On day one, three PGR workshops were held, including one led by Adam Brandt and Hatice Ergul on Membership Categorisation Analysis. Day two saw a large number of research student presentations, including two by current ALC students on their PhD research (as well as two presentations by former MA students, Yusuke Arano and Mike Grez).

Johannes Wagner begins his morning plenary

Day two was also marked by three plenary presentations by leading L2 social interaction researchers Johannes Wagner (University of Southern Denmark), Simona Pekarek-Doehler (University of Neuchatel) and Numa Markee (University of Illnois, Urbana-Champagne). Both the plenaries and the student presentations involved high quality, cutting-edge research at the intersection of social interaction and applied linguistics, and led to many lively discussions and debates.

HUMAN director Olcay Sert introduces Simona Pekarek-Doehler ahead of her plenary talk
HUMAN director Olcay Sert introduces Simona Pekarek-Doehler ahead of her plenary talk

The HUMAN team deserve great credit and thanks for putting together such an interesting and exciting event (both academically and socially), and the ALC team look forward to working with them all further in the future!

Rachelle Vessey conference presentation on ‘hashtag politics’

UntitledIn early September, Rachelle Vessey travelled to Hamburg to present as part of a session on “Hashtag politics” at the Language in the Media conference.

Her paper, entitled “The language politics of Twitter in Canada”, followed papers focusing on Hong Kong and France for a truly international approach to the communicative functions of hashtags in political contexts. Continue reading Rachelle Vessey conference presentation on ‘hashtag politics’