About

Language and Literacy Education, including Teaching English to speakers of other Languages (TESOL), at UNSW focuses on the learning and teaching of English, languages other than English and English as a second or additional language or dialect (EAL/D), and the implications for pedagogy, curriculum design, and assessment and evaluation in schools, community organisations and higher education institutions.

Research

Led by Professor Sue Starfield (also Director of the UNSW Learning Centre) and Dr Sue Ollerhead, with key members including Professor Anne Burns, Professor Chris Davison, A/Prof Pauline Gibbons, Dr Phiona Stanley, Dr Hoa Nguyen, Dr Christian Chun,and Dr Michael Michell, this team hosts a research network of Australian and international scholars in language and literacy education, with a particular focus on the teaching of English to speakers of other languages (TESOL).

The program focuses on research into the learning and teaching of English as a foreign, second or additional language or dialect (EAL/D), and the implications for pedagogy, curriculum design, assessment and evaluation, and teacher development in schools and higher education institutions in Australia and internationally.The team has won over $3 million of grant support including competitive, peer-reviewed research grants, industry grants and faculty level grants in the last three years including 2 ARC Discovery grants on English language issues in higher education. Their work has included projects funded by the Australian Research Council, the Hong Kong Research Grants Committee, the NSW Department of Education and Training, the Victorian Department of Education and Early Childhood Development, the Global English Corporation, the Hong Kong Education and Manpower Bureau, and the British Council. Their research has helped advance curriculum and assessment systems, teacher training, and adult and higher education around the world. Researchers in this group have produced over 45 international refereed journal articles, over 20 book chapters and more than 12 books by leading publishers in the last five years. Members sit on a range of editorial boards of leading international refereed journals, edit key journals and handbooks and hold significant leadership positions on national and international advisory committees and professional associations, including the Australian Association for Applied Linguistics, TESOL International, and the Australian and NSW Council of Deans of Education.

See our current HDR students here

Community Engagement

Our School has a very close partnership with the Association for Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (ATESOL).

The research group is involved in TESOL-related associations, publications and members are involved in TESOL-related government bodies and reviews including:

Professor Davison co-edited the prestigious Springer International Handbook of English Language Teaching, the best-selling handbook in the Springer series in 2010, and was guest editor of the A* publications TESOL Quarterly and the Journal of Asian-Pacific Communication. She is Editor-in-Chief of the Australian Review of Applied Linguistics (Ollerhead and Chun are co-editors), and Series Editor for Springer’s series on English language education, as well as a Senior Advisor to the pre-eminent government-funded English Language Institute of Singapore. Prof Burns was appointed Series Advisor for Oxford’s Applied Linguistics series, and A/Prof Starfield co-edited English for Specific Purposes, a top-ranking journal, and the Routledge Series Introductions to English for Specific Purposes and Research in English for Specific Purposes, and is a member of various national and international reference groups.

Dr Hoa Nguyen has been working in the editorial board of Current Issues in Language Planning , a top-ranking journal and in the reviewing team of Asian EFL journal and System. She was guess editor of two special issues of Current Issues in Language Planning ( issues in English as Medium of Instruction in Asia and Africa). She is a research mentor for Cam TESOL Network.

Dr. Christian Chun is currently serving on the Editorial and Advisory Board of TESOL Quarterly.

Postgraduate CourseworkPostgraduate Research
Videos Language & Literacy Learning & Teaching, School of Education, UNSW Australia   Language & Literacy Learning & Teaching, School of Education, UNSW Australia

At UNSW we offer courses on how to teach EALD in secondary schools as well as postgraduate courses on literacy development and theoretical background. Hear how our School will help you apply what you have learnt in theory to the practical classroom situation.

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Videos Dr Phiona Stanley, Language & Literacy, School of Education, UNSW Australia   Dr Phiona Stanley, Language & Literacy, School of Education, UNSW Australia

Dr Phiona Stanley’s is particularly interested in language research and how language education and contact relates to intercultural competence. Hear more about her planned trip as part of her ongoing research project.

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Videos Dr Sue Ollerhead, School of Education, UNSW Australia   Dr Sue Ollerhead, School of Education, UNSW Australia

Hear more about Dr Ollerhead’s research in the area of TESOL and literacy, particularly developing effective pedagogies for EALD refugee learners.

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Videos Associate Professor Sue Starfield, UNSW School of Education   Associate Professor Sue Starfield, UNSW School of Education

Advanced academic writing and the thesis options available to PhD students in the creative and performing arts are what Associate Professor Sue Starfield has been researching. Listen how, as Director of the UNSW Learning Centre, this area marries up her work with her research.

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Videos PhD studies in Language and Literacy Education, School of Education, UNSW Australia   PhD studies in Language and Literacy Education, School of Education, UNSW Australia

Jasper Hsieh’s research is a critical ethnography focusing on international students trying to understand Taiwanese students who have lived abroad and their sense of ‘otherness’ versus ‘insideness’. Hear why Jasper chose to study at UNSW School of Education.

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