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Language and literacies

Language and literacies

Language is a powerful tool for constructing knowledge and social identities and crucial in everyday contexts as well as in professional practices. Our language both reflects and shapes our understanding of the world, our cultures, our relationships, our thinking and our identities. ​

We explore notions such as intercultural communication, translation and translanguaging, to better grasp a world which is characterized by diversity, multilingualism, mobility and diasporic identities. Our work also focuses on literacy, aiming to understand the creativity of literacy practices across the online-offline divide. We carry out research into digital literacy to ensure that people today (including teachers and learners) can use new technologies judiciously and critically (see Creating Facebook; DigitaLits).

Language is a powerful resource for learning across the lifespan, and colleagues focus on the use of languages in our contemporary working lives and practices. Field-leading professional literacies research examines writing in social work. Language teaching across the globe is at the centre of our Developing Online Teaching Skills work which focuses on the real life needs and ideals of language teachers. ​

Our work also offers important insights into the use of English as an academic lingua franca and a medium of instruction in education across the globe and how this links with issues of social justice and inequality​.