LINGLINE 102 March 2017

LINGLINE 102 March 2017

LINGLINE is the departmental newsletter of the Department of Linguistics at Macquarie University. It focuses on the interests and concerns of staff and postgraduate students in the department. LINGLINE aims to keep staff and students across the world in touch with the department and with one another, and welcomes contributions from all staff and students. Please send submissions to the editor, Haidee Kruger, at Suggestions for and feedback about the newsletter are welcome.

Inside this edition

Hello again

Staff news

  • Achievements, awards and grant successes
  • New books for the new year!

HDR achievements

Reports: Conferences, workshops and special events

  • Workshop: The Relationship between Indigenous Children’s Hearing and Phonological Awareness in Remote Communities in the Northern Territory (Macquarie University, Sydney, 8 March 2017)
  • Speech Science and Technology Conference (SST) (Western Sydney University, Sydney, 7-9 December 2016)
  • VEIP3: Third international workshop on Varieties of English in the Indo-Pacific (Macquarie University, Sydney, 16-17 February 2017)
  • Association for Research in Otolaryngology (ARO) MidWinter Meeting (Baltimore, 11-15 February 2017)


  • Student in the limelight (1): Melanie Law
  • The Weibo Project: Translation and Interpreting students collaborate with the NSW Police Force
  • HDR and alumni snippets
  • Student in the limelight (2): Karien Redelinghuys
  • Erasmus+ staff mobility exchange with the University of Antwerp

News from Language on the Move

  • Visit from Hamburg University and Bridging Language Barriers Symposium
  • Linguistic Complexity

Upcoming events

  • Developing Minds Series - The Developing Lexicon: Representations and Processing (Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia, 26-27 April 2017)
  • Department of Linguistics research seminar series
  • FIT 2017: Disruption and diversification (3-5 August 2017, Brisbane)

Publications by staff and HDR students (January to March)

Hello again

Welcome to the first edition of LINGLINE for 2017! LINGLINE wishes all our readers a healthy, happy and productive year, and is looking forward to continue celebrating the achievements of the linguistics community at Macquarie.

The year is off to a productive start with numerous workshops, conferences, and other events keeping linguistics staff and students busy. In between all of this, linguistics staff members also managed to make time to publish (award-winning) books! The events and publications covered in this edition attest to the range of expertise in the department, and some of our feature stories highlight the ways in which our staff and students are also making contributions to the community.

Eagle-eyed readers may notice that some of our regular features are still taking an extended break they will return in time for the next edition.

(If you missed any of our 2016 editions, you can always revisit them on our webpage.)

– Haidee Kruger

Staff News

Achievements, Awards and Grant successes

Dr Haidee Krugerand Dr Jessica Monaghan have both been successful in the recent Macquarie University Research Development Grant (MQRDG) round. Congratulations to both!

Dr Titia Benders has taken up the role as Deputy Director of the Child Language Lab. Well done, and best wishes for your new position, Titia!

Professor Ingrid Piller’s recent book Linguistic Diversity and Social Justice: An Introduction to Applied Sociolinguistics (Oxford University Press, 2016) is already raking in the accolades. It was recently awarded the American Association of Publishers 2017 PROSE Award in the category “Language and Linguistics”. The PROSE Awards have been recognising “the very best in professional and scholarly publishing by bringing attention to distinguished books, journals, and electronic content” since 1976. Congratulations, Ingrid!

New Books for the New Year!

Two new books from staff members have recently been published.

Routledge have just published the third edition of Dr Adrian Buzo’s The Making of Modern Korea. From the blurb:

This fully updated third edition of The Making of Modern Korea provides a thorough, balanced and engaging history of Korea from 1876 to the present day. The text is unique in analysing domestic developments in the two Koreas in the wider context of regional and international affairs.

Key features of the book include:

  • Comprehensive coverage of Korean history
  • Expanded coverage of social and cultural affairs
  • A new chapter covering the end of the Choson Dynasty in the context of Japanese imperialist expansion
  • Up-to-date analysis of important contemporary developments
  • Comparative focus on North and South Korea
  • An examination of Korea within its regional context
  • A detailed chronology and suggestions for further reading

The Making of Modern Korea is a valuable one-volume resource for students of modern Korean history, international politics and Asian Studies.

Congratulations to Dr Nick Wilson on the recent publication of a new edition of the bestselling textbook An Introduction to Sociolinguistics, co-authored with Janet Holmes. From the publisher’s blurb:

In this best-selling introductory textbook, Janet Holmes and Nick Wilson examine the role of language in a variety of social contexts, considering both how language works and how it can be used to signal and interpret various aspects of social identity. Divided into three sections, this book explains basic sociolinguistic concepts in the light of classic approaches as well as introducing more recent research. This fifth edition has been revised and updated throughout using key concepts and examples to guide the reader through this fascinating area, including:

  • A new chapter on identity that reflects the latest research
  • A brand new companion website which is fully cross-referenced within this book, and which includes video and audio materials, interactive activities and links to useful websites
  • Updated and revised examples and exercises which include new material from Tanzania, Wales, Paraguay and Timor-Leste
  • Fully updated further reading and references sections

An Introduction to Sociolinguistics is the essential introductory text for all students of sociolinguistics and a splendid point of reference for students of English language studies, linguistics and applied linguistics.

HDR Achievements

Congratulations to the following students from the Child Language Lab on the recent completion of their theses:

Rebecca Holt. “Neural responses to morphosyntactic violations in foreign-accented speech”. Supervised by Distinguished Professor Katherine Demuth and Carmen Kung.

Sujal Pokharel. “Voicing contrasts in Nepali infant-directed speech”. Supervised by Distinguished Professor Katherine Demuth and Dr Titia Benders.

Tamara Schembri. “Online acquisition of Cairene Arabic word stress patterns over time”. Supervised by Distinguished Professor Katherine Demuth and Professor Mark Johnson.

Reports: Conferences, Workshops and Special Events

Workshop: the Relationship between Indigenous Children’s Hearing and Phonological Awareness in Remote Communities in the Northern Territory (Macquarie University, Sydney, 8 March 2017)

Many of the current interventions to address conductive hearing loss in Aboriginal children living remotely focus on sound amplification. While this is important, a better understanding of the influence of a child’s native language and auditory listening skills is also critical for improving children’s language and literacy outcomes. To do this, studies with larger sample sizes from different types of Aboriginal communities are needed.

This workshop outlined a program of research aimed at exploring the relationship between children’s phonological awareness and hearing/listening status from communities in East and West Arnhem Land and Central Australia. It aimed to describe 6-8-year-olds’ levels of hearing loss, auditory processing, phonological awareness and other risk factors (for language acquisition and literacy) across communities.

The findings will provide evidence-based advice for teachers and parents to enhance the language and literacy skills of Aboriginal children with conductive hearing loss. It is hoped that the results will be used as a translational guide for the iHearing Program (NT Department of Health), facilitating the development of more appropriate resources and programs to enhance Aboriginal children’s learning of English as a second language.

The workshop, hosted by Distinguished Professor Katherine Demuth, included three speakers: Associate Professor Mridula Sharma(Macquarie University), Professor Gillian Wigglesworth and Dr Anna Stephen (The University of Melbourne) (pictured).

Speech Science and Technology Conference (SST) (Western Sydney University, Sydney, 7-9 December 2016)

From 7-9 December 2016, members of the Child Language Lab attended the 16th Australasian International Conference on Speech Science and Technology (SST) hosted by Western Sydney University. This conference showcased recent research across the fields of language acquisition, speech perception and production, language variation, bilingualism and more!

CLL members presented five talks and a further six posters, making a significant contribution to the research presented at the conference.

It was also a great opportunity for CLL researchers to receive feedback on their work and build partnerships with researchers at other universities. Many CLL members also took advantage of a one-day tutorial lead by Professor Harald Baayen. The tutorial focused on Generalised Additive Mixed Models, a statistical technique for modelling data. Overall, SST provided an engaging opportunity to learn and network.

– Contribution by Rebecca Holt

VEIP3: Third international workshop on varieties of English in the Indo-Pacific (Macquarie University, SYDNEY, 16-17 February 2017)

The third workshop on varieties of English in the Indo-Pacific showcased fresh research on distinctive aspects of new Englishes and their individual habitats. Professor Edgar Schneider (Regensburg University, Germany) launched the event with a wide-ranging paper on the reflections of culture to be found in corpus texts, and in different layers of language and discourse:

  • Culture-as-content, local terms for food, folklore, etc., as in hawker centre
  • characteristic dimensions of culture/values, as in kiasuism
  • preferences for particular linguistic constructions that might be motivated by different cultural perspectives, e.g. impersonal constructions in Asian Englishes

Papers by other workshop participants provided lively illustration of these various kinds of link between culture/society and regional Englishes from research on individual postcolonial habitats.


The informal characteristic of Australian culture was underscored in the increasing colloquialisation found by Professor Peter Collins (UNSW) in three genres of Australian writing during the twentieth centiry (fiction, academic and news reporting). Dr Haidee Kruger (Macquarie) and Dr Adam Smith (Macquarie) also found some colloquialisation of style in Australian Hansard records through the same period, counterbalanced in some decades with the conventional nominalisation of institutional style.

Democracy and autocracy

Dr Kathleen Ahrens (Hong Kong Polytechnic) showed how the construction of democracy differed in political speeches by the Governors of Hong Kong before the handover and those of the chief executives who came after – with the Governors typically projecting via the metaphor of building, and the Chief Executives via that of an open-ended journey.  In a second paper on newspaper texts from Greater China (Hong Kong, PRC and Taiwan), Emeritus Professor Pam Peters (Macquarie), Dr Tobias Bernaisch (Giessen University, Germany) and Dr Ahrens found remarkable contrasts in the usage of modal verbs between the PRC, which made strong use of will and little of the more tentative would, while the two were used almost equally in newspapers from Hong Kong and Taiwan. These findings are suggestive of the more authoritarian voice of the People’s Daily in the PRC, and the more exploratory journalism to be found in the other two Chinese states.

Multilingualism and code-switching

Singapore’s multilingual culture was reflected in the somewhat mixed language used by children, in research by Dr Sarah Buschfeld (Regensburg University, Germany). Though English is increasingly their first language, their Chinese or Indian family background emerges in the absence of some features of English syntax, e.g. marking of the subject.  More extended code-mixing was found in the Philippine student English discussed by Dr Loy Lising, Emeritus Professor Pam Peters and Dr Adam Smith. Many students code-switched freely between Filipino and English in their online academic discussion, using it for referential and interpersonal purposes, especially to manage disagreement with the previous speaker. Codeswitching in online discussions was also the focus of research by Professor Bertus van Rooy (North West University, South Africa) and Dr Haidee Kruger on South African discussions of popular TV soap operas (mostly by young women). Their code-switching involved elements from other languages within South Africa (Sotho and Nguni), as well as Nigeria, Jamaica and other “outer circle” Englishes, reflecting the range of popular culture media to which they have access.

Gender expression

In a contribution to gender studies, Dr Tobias Bernaisch used corpus data on 16 linguistic hedges (e.g. maybe, I think) from four varieties of English (Singaporean, Hong Kong, Philippine and British) to challenge the commonplace that women use more hedges than men. It proved true in Hong Kong and the Philippines, but not in the other two varieties. Factors other than gender (e.g. region) conditioned the preferred hedges in the different varieties, as did the participants’ job type – associated with the humanities or technology.

Participants in the VEIP3 workshop at Macquarie University (pictured from left to right):
(Back row): Professor Peter Collins (UNSW), Dr Tobias Bernaisch (Giessen University), Professor Edgar Schneider (Regensburg University), Dr Sarah Buschfeld (Regensburg University), Dr Adam Smith (Macquarie), Dr Haidee Kruger (Macquarie), Dr Kathleen Ahrens (Hong Kong Polytechnic)
(Front row): Dr Loy Lising (Macquarie), Professor Kate Burridge (Monash), Emeritus Professor Pam Peters (Macquarie), Professor Jeff Siegel (UNE).

Varieties in close contact

The final paper focused on Englishes in the South Pacific, based on research by Professor Carolin Biewer (Wurzburg, Germany) and Professor Kate Burridge (Monash University). It highlighted the number of different types of English to be found there in close proximity, including native- and non-native varieties as well as pidgins and creoles, and the complexity of the interactions and interrelations between them.

VEIP presentations later this year

The VEIP3 workshop at Macquarie University was the first of three conferences in 2017 at which VEIP research will be presented. Five papers have been accepted for the forthcoming ICAME conference in Prague (24-28 May); and seven for the World Humanities conference in Liege (6-12 August) organised by Unesco and the International Council for Philosophy and Human Sciences (CIPSH). The abstracts of these papers and further details about the conferences can be on the VEIP website.

– Contribution by Emeritus Professor Pam Peters

Association for Research in Otolaryngology (ARO) MidWinter Meeting (Baltimore, 11-15 February 2017)

The Association for Research in Otolaryngology (ARO) held its 40th Annual MidWinter Meeting in Baltimore on 11-15 February 2017. The MidWinter Meeting is the primary meeting of the Association and provides a great opportunity to present and discuss research in the broad field of Otolaryngology. This year’s meeting was attended by Professor David McAlpine, Andrew Brughera, Dr Nicholas Haywood, Heivet Hernández-Perez, Dr Jason Mikiel-Hunter, Dr Jessica Monaghan, Mathieu Recugnat, Dr Jaime Undurraga, and Dr Lindsey Van Yper. The papers presented at the meeting featured research on binaural hearing, cochlear implants, hidden hearing loss, and the efferent auditory pathway.

Binaural hearing

Binaural hearing, particularly the ability to detect small differences in the arrival time of sounds between the two ears (interaural time differences, ITDs), enables sound localisation and improves speech perception in adverse listening conditions. Despite the importance of binaural hearing for everyday listening, it is still poorly understood how ITDs are represented in the human brain. To this end, Andrew Brughera proposed a model in which internal delays of brainstem neurons are generated by membrane properties. In addition, Dr Nicholas Haywood presented his results on psychoacoustic measures to characterise hemispheric tuning of spatial channels.

Cochlear implants

Cochlear implant performance varies considerably between patients. This outcome variability may be explained by individual differences in the electrode-neural interface, as well as differences in higher-order auditory processing. As an invited speaker, Dr Jaime Undurraga talked about how the electrode-neural interface limits the outcome with cochlear implants. He also presented a poster on the use of objective measures to differentiate electrodes in cochlear implant users. Mathieu Recugnat presented his work on how the polarity and pulse shape effects the auditory nerve responses using a physiologically inspired model of a single spiral ganglion neuron. Dr Lindsey Van Yper presented a poster on the use of cognitive auditory event-related potentials to assess cochlear implant performance.

Hidden hearing loss

There is increasing evidence that acoustic noise can engender damage to neural processing in the absence of elevated hearing thresholds (so-called hidden hearing loss). Dr Jessica Monaghan presented a poster on the changes in the neural representation of speech-in-noise induced by acoustic noise insults in the auditory midbrain of gerbils.

A snapshot of some of the Macquarie researchers who attended the ARO MidWinter Meeting in Baltimore 2017 (from left to right): Andrew Brughera, Professor David McAlpine, Mathieu Recugnat, Dr Lindsey Van Yper, Heivet Hernández-Perez, Dr Jason Mikiel-Hunter and Dr Jaime Undurraga.

Efferent auditory pathway

The perception of speech sounds in humans requires a fast and accurate integration of both bottom-up and top-down information. However, it remains poorly understood whether during speech perception the top-down control reaches the level of the brainstem or even the cochlea. In her poster, Heivet Hernández-Perez showed that auditory attention indeed modulates the activity of the cochlear activity, brainstem, and cortical responses.

After attending the ARO MidWinter Meeting, Professor David McAlpine and his group visited Professor Daniel Polley’s lab at Harvard Medical School where ideas on binaural processing were exchanged.

– Contribution by Dr Lindsey Van Yper


Student in the limelight (1): Melanie Law

In the first of a double bill of South African cotutelle students, PhD student Melanie Law told LINGLINE a bit about herself.

My academic journey started in 2004 when I enrolled in a BA in Language Practice at the North-West University's (NWU) Vaal Triangle campus, South Africa. At the time, I assumed that once I had completed my degree I would end up working as a journalist, but as fate and (a lot of) luck would have it, 13 years later, I find myself at Macquarie University working towards a Joint PhD in Linguistics (under a Cotutelle agreement between NWU and Macquarie University). I was fortunate enough to have been awarded an iMRES, which has made this year of study abroad possible. My PhD, which is jointly supervised by Dr Haidee Kruger (MQ) and Professor Bertus van Rooy (NWU), investigates the role that editorial intervention plays in conventionalisation processes, which I am comparing in South African and Australian English.

I have a keen interest in editing and in understanding what editors do, how this differs across various contexts and what the impact of editorial intervention is, which is reflected in my previous and current research. At the NWU, I teach two editing modules (to third year and honours students) and components of two honours research modules, as well as coordinating an honours internship in Language Practice.

I arrived at Macquarie University in January and will spend the remainder 2017 here working on my thesis. Sydney is a beautiful, vibrant and diverse city, which I find curiously familiar and foreign all at once.

– Contribution by Melanie Law

The WEIBO project: Translation and Interpreting students collaborate with the NSW Police Force

In 2010, the NSW Police Force launched a social media page on Weibo, also known as the Chinese equivalent of Facebook. The purpose of the project is to provide information on crime prevention and safety to international students, travellers to NSW and families of students back in China. The Translation and Interpreting programme at Macquarie has partnered with the police in the provision of translated materials and the monitoring of posts and comments in Chinese on the site. Each semester, around 10 students volunteer to do a weekly translation of the posts, as well as monitoring and translating the comments from Chinese viewers. In 2013, this project won a National Multicultural Marketing Award organised by the Community Relations Commission (now Multicultural NSW).

This year marks the seventh year of a very successful collaboration between the NSW Police Force and the Translation and Interpreting programme. On 28 March 2017, an award ceremony as well as a welcome session for our new students who are interested in working on the project in future was held in the Macquarie University Art Gallery. Vice Chancellor Professor Bruce Dowton attended the ceremony. During his address, he emphasised the importance of community and how the Weibo Project benefits not only the Macquarie University community but the broader communities of our locality and region. In the words of the Vice Chancellor, “it is a meaningful project and it’s for our whole community”.

Left to right: Superintendent Mr Gavin Dengate, Dr Helen Slatyer, two students (Junling Wang and Yue Wang) and Vice Chancellor Professor Bruce Dowton during the certificate ceremony.

Superintendent Mr Gavin Dengate, on behalf of the NSW Police Force, thanked Translation and Interpreting students for their contribution to the success of the project. Certificates of Appreciation were issued to students who participated in the project in the previous semester. Detective Sergeant Ronald Urquhart talked to the new students about the project and encouraged them to join the team.

The Weibo Project is ongoing and will be expanding to the whole of NSW. Our students will continue to play a key role in getting safety messages out to the Chinese community in this very successful collaboration.

– Contribution by Xiaoxia (Kittye) Shen

HDR and Alumni Snippets

HDR students in the department have been busy! This corner is reserved for short snippets of news received from HDR students and alumni.

The Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) has requested a copy of Dr Kong Wo Tang’s doctoral dissertation “A Critical Study of Discourse and Interaction in the Australian Migration Review Tribunal (MRT)” after Kong Wo provided a summary of findings to the Registrar of the AAT. Kong Wo was initially supervised by the late Professor Chris Candlin and subsequently by Adjunct Professor Alan Jones. Kong Wo was admitted to the degree of PhD in September 2016.

In his research, Kong Wo made some suggestions for improving the communication and understanding of the migration review process, and in particular with respect to providing non-represented review applicants better and fairer access to the review system. It is encouraging to see stakeholders’ interest in research!

Justin Kwan, a PhD student of Professor Mehdi Riazi will be offering two presentations at the 2017 Faces of English 2 conference on Teaching and Researching Academic and Professional English. The conference will take place from 1-3 June 2017, and is organised by the CAES, University of Hong Kong. Justin will attend as a student of Macquarie University and an adjunct lecturer of HKUSPACE.

The topics of his presentations are:

  • “Using portfolios for teaching and assessing academic writing skills” (50 min. workshop)
  • “Using narrative frames to investigate ESL Students’ writing experiences” (30 min. paper presentation)

Good luck, Justin!

In our last issue we reported on the publication of volume 7 of Vygotsky’s writings in Korean. Volume 8 was recently published, a project on which PhD candidate David Kellogg has collaborated.

의식과 숙달 - 비고츠키 아동학 강의 3 l 비고츠키 선집 8

레프 세묘노비치 비고츠키 (지은이) | 비고츠키 연구회 (옮긴이) | 살림터 | 2017-01-11

Consciousness and Mastery: Vygotsky Lectures on Pedology 3, Collected Works of Vygotsky 8, by Lev Semyonovich Vygotsky, translated by the Seoul Vygotsky Community: David Kellogg, Kim Yongho, Choe Yeongmi, Yi Miyeong, Yi Dupyo, Kim Yeosun, and Kweon Minsuk.

Student in the Limelight (2): Karien Redelinghuys

In the second of our double bill of South African cotutelle students, PhD student Melanie Law told LINGLINE a bit about herself.

I arrived in Australia in June 2016 to work on my PhD as part of the cotutelle programme between Macquarie University and the North-West University, which is situated in South Africa. I have quite a long history with North-West University as I completed my BA, Honours and MA degrees in Translation Studies there. When my two supervisors suggested I apply for the cotuellle programme, I jumped at the opportunity. My PhD focuses on the possible role of translation as a facilitator of language change with a focus on the South African context, particularly on translations done between South African English and Afrikaans.

Looking back on my time here, I realise what a privilege the whole experience has been. While it goes without saying that I’ve had to spend considerable time on my study, I’ve tried to experience as much of Sydney as possible. My favourite activity during the weekend is to explore Sydney’s historical sights to learn as much about the city and its people as possible. I’m also avidly looking for evidence of the elusive drop-bears but I’ve had no such luck yet. I only have fond memories of my time here and the wonderful people I’ve met – most of whom actually work at Linguistics Department. It really has been an unforgettable experience.

– Contribution by Karien Redelinghuys

Erasmus+ Staff Mobility exchange with the University of Antwerp

At the end of March, the Department of Linguistics hosted two colleagues from the University of Antwerp under an Erasmus+ Staff Mobility agreement. The exchange had the purpose of establishing closer research and teaching links between the two universities.

Left to right: Dr Iris Schrijver (University of Antwerp), Professor Aline Remael (University of Antwerp), Dr Helen Slatyer, Dr Haidee Kruger and Dr Jing Fang.

Professor Aline Remael is Head of Department of the Department of Applied Linguistics/Translators and Interpreters at the University of Antwerp, and an international leader in the field of audiovisual translation and media accessibility. She presented a workshop on audio description for the blind as part of the Audiovisual Translation unit in the Master of Translation and Interpreting, as well as a lecture in the Translation and Interpreting seminar series, on audiovisual translation and the role of the accessibility manager. The lecture emphasised the complexity of managing accessibility services in the theatre, museums, live events, and cinema, and the variety of skills that are required. This is very much in line with the new Master of Accessible Communication that will be launched in 2018 in the Department of Linguistics, bringing together content from Translation and Interpreting, Media Studies, Applied Linguistics, and Editing and Publishing to prepare graduates for a career in the field of accessibility.

Dr Iris Schrijver from the same department presented a lecture on researching the effect of writing training on translation performance in the research methodology unit in the Master of Translation and Interpreting. She also presented a workshop on the use of Inputlog, a program developed at the University of Antwerp. The software performs computer keystroke logging as a data collection method that logs all movements on the computer (keystrokes and mouse movements such as clicks, deleting, scrolling and cursor navigation) during a text-production task. It also adds time stamps to these data and stores them for later processing. It is used to describe online text-production processes in detail in various research domains: children’s writing, professional writing, L1 versus L2 writing, and translation.

Another application has been made for a second staff mobility agreement under the Erasmus+ scheme. Under the first agreement, Dr Haidee Krugervisited the University of Antwerp to present lectures in October 2017, and Associate Professor Jan-Louis Krugerjust returned from a similar visit. The links we have established through this exchange have opened up a number of research and teaching collaborations that will come to fruition in the next few years.

– Contribution by Associate Professor Jan-Louis Kruger

News from Language on the Move

Visit from Hamburg University and Bridging Language Barriers Symposium

From 13-22 March, the Language-on-the-Move team was fortunate to host a delegation of education researchers from Hamburg University. Our visitors included Professor Ingrid Gogolin, Professor Drorit Lengyel, Dr Tobias Schroedler and PhD candidate Hanne Brandt. The aim of the visit was to engage Australian and German research perspectives on multilingual education and to work towards closer academic collaboration.

(Pictured) The organising committee and presenters at the Bridging Language Barriers Symposium.

The highlight of the visit of the Hamburg team was the Bridging Language Barriers Symposium on 16 March, where the German research perspectives offered by our colleagues from Hamburg University were complemented with Australian perspectives offered by colleagues from the Australian Catholic University, Australian National University, Deakin University, Macquarie University, Monash University, Sydney University and the University of New South Wales. Over 70 attendees from various institutions in Sydney and as far afield as Brisbane and Melbourne joined us for an exciting day.

In the virtual world, we had a lively conversation going on Twitter under the hashtag #LOTM2017, which reached 27,346 accounts and 93,066 impressions. If you missed the conversation, MQ PhD candidate Alexandra Grey has selected the most informative tweets under the #LOTM2017 hashtag and curated them on Storify.

The organising team under the leadership of Ingrid Piller were extremely pleased with the result of their efforts and special thanks are due to all members of the academic and organising committee, who volunteered their time and hard work far beyond the call of duty (in alphabetical order): Agnes Bodis, Alexandra Grey, Gegentuul Baioud, Hanna Torsh, Jinhyun Cho, Laura Smith-Khan, Li Jia, Livia Gerber, Loy Lising, Rahel Cramer, Shiva Motaghi Tabari, Vera Williams Tetteh and Yining Wang.

There are many lessons from the Bridging Language Barriers Symposium that will help the Hamburg and Macquarie teams and all the researchers involved in the symposium to advance their research collaboration in multilingual education. These are the Top Ten.

10 lessons from the Bridging Language Barriers Symposium
  1. A language barrier occurs where linguistic diversity results in unequal access to social goods, including education, employment, health, welfare, the law and political and community participation.
  2. Language barriers are largely linked to migration. Waves of migration occur in peaks and troughs. Immigration-highs tend to trigger short-term activism which dies down as migrant numbers decline. The lack of a sustained policy response to migration – including related language barriers – means that the wheel keeps being reinvented to the detriment of equal opportunities in a diverse society.
  3. Bridging language barriers in education is not so much about language learning but about the role of languages in learning.
  4. Janus-faced attitudes to linguistic diversity – celebration of linguistic diversity in the abstract and deficit views of actual multilingual speakers – continue to hamper effective approaches to bridging language barriers.
  5. Widespread confusion between ‘language’ and ‘ethnicity’ (or ‘migrant background’ or ‘native/non-native speaker’) has resulted in a relative lack of policy-relevant data about the language repertoires of children in schools; the same is true of institutions generally.
  6. To overcome language barriers to educational success all language resources and aspirations of children and their families need to be supported: home languages, the language of schooling, and foreign languages.
  7. Both in Australia and Germany, educational policy focuses almost exclusively on supporting the language of schooling (English in Australia, German in Germany) and home languages are largely ignored. In the worst case, they are actively suppressed; in the best case, they suffer from benign neglect. Consistent efforts to promote home languages continue to be the exception that proves the rule.
  8. There is currently a more concerted research and policy effort to support home languages in the education system in Germany, where – in contrast to Australia – foreign language learning is also a key plank of education.
  9. Both in Australia and Germany, teachers, particularly non-language teachers, are relatively poorly prepared to deal productively with linguistic diversity in the classroom. The integration of modules on linguistic diversity in all teacher training program is essential.
  10. New technologies hold considerable potential to create better resources for multilingual learners but their development is subject to economic and ideological constraints.

Related content:

More related content to come on Language on the Movein the following weeks so watch this space and the #LOTM2017 hashtag!

Linguistic Complexity

“How does human language interact with increasing social complexity in a unified global network?”

This is the “big question” addressed by Ingrid Piller in a video segment that is part of Macquarie University’s new Coursera Specialisation Solving Complex Problems.

Using the framework of Big History, Solving Complex Problemssynthesizes knowledge across the sciences and the humanities, and thereby provides a powerful foundation to think and research in new ways. The specialisation consists of four individual courses and the segment on “Linguistic Complexity” is part of the introductory course devoted to “Analysing Complexity”.

Focusing on linguistic complexity in contemporary Australia, Ingrid explains key tensions in linguistic diversity against the social background of migration and globalisation. In addition to the Coursera site, the video can be accessed at

Upcoming Events

Developing Minds Series - The Developing Lexicon: Representations and Processing (Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia, 26-27 April 2017)

The lexicon forms the backbone for successful language development. However, despite its importance, little is known about how learners store and process phonological, morphological, syntactic and semantic aspects of lexical representations, and the role this plays in both language processing and speech planning.

This workshop brings together researchers working on the lexicon in language acquisition and development – using various methodologies and paradigms – to gain a better understanding of the architecture of the mental lexicon and its development. Submissions are welcome on all research exploring this issue in monolingual and multilingual children and adults, and in both typically developing and special populations (such as those with hearing impairments and language delays). The workshop will include keynote addresses and invited talks by experts in the fields of linguistics, computational modelling, cognitive science, and developmental psychology.

Keynote speakers

  • Professor Paul Boersma (University of Amsterdam, the Netherlands)
  • Professor Paula Fikkert (Radboud University, the Netherlands)
  • Associate Professor Bob McMurray (University of Iowa, USA)

Important dates

  • 16 April 2017 registration deadline
  • 26-27 April 2017 workshop

Click here to register.

Organising committee

  • Katherine Demuth
  • Titia Benders
  • Laurence Bruggeman
  • Carmen Kung
  • Nan Xu Rattanasone
  • Ivan Yuen

To find out more about this workshop please visit this link.

Department of Linguistics Research Seminar Series

Broaden your linguistic horizons at our monthly seminars!

The programme for the departmental research seminar series for 2017 is now available here. All seminars are webcast live, and recorded. To access the live webcast for any of these seminars, or to catch up on one you missed, visit the Linguistics Seminar 2017 echo website.

Publications by Staff and PhD Students (January to March)


Benson, P. (2017). The Discourse of YouTube: Multimodal text in a global context. London: Routledge.

Holmes, J., & Wilson, N. (2017). An Introduction to Sociolinguistics (5th edition). Abingdon: Routledge.

Journal articles (PUBLISHED)

Benson, P. (2017). Sleeping with strangers: Dreams and nightmares in experiences of homestay. Study Abroad Research in Second Language Acquisition and International Education. 3 (1).

Chappell, P.J. (2017) Interrogating your wisdom of practice to improve your classroom practices. ELT Journal, 71/4, 1-11. (early access)

Kruger, H., & Van Rooy, B. (2017). Editorial practice and the progressive in Black South African English. World Englishes, 36(1): 20-41.

Demuth, K., & Tomas, E. (2016). Understanding the contributions of prosodic phonology to morphological development: Implications for children with specific language impairment. First Language, 36(3), 265-278. doi:10.1177/0142723715626066

Tomas, E., Demuth, K. & Petocz, P. (2017). The role of frequency and predictability in learning morphophonological alternations: Implications for children with SLI. Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research. doi:10.1044/2016_JSLHR-L-16-0138

Caple, H., & Knox, J. S. (2017). How to author a picture gallery. Journalism, 1-20. doi:

Sim, M., & Roger, P. (2016). Culture, beliefs and anxiety: A study of university-level Japanese learners of English. Asian EFL Journal, 18(4), 26-77.

Sowman, P., Ryan, M., Johnson, B.W., Savage, G., Crain, S., Harrison, E., Martin, E., & Burianova, H. (2017). Grey matter volume differences in the left caudate nucleus of people who stutter. Brain and Language, 164, 9-15. doi:10.1016/j.bandl.2016.08.009

Umino, T., and Benson, P. (2016). Communities of practice in study abroad: A four-year study of an Indonesian student’s experience in Japan. The Modern Language Journal, 100(4), 1-18.

Yang, C., Crain, S., Berwick, R.C., Chomsky, N., & Bolhuis, J.J. (in press). The growth of language: Universal Grammar, experience, and principles of computation. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews. doi:10.1016/j.neubiorev.2016.12.023

Zhou, P., Crain, S., Gao, L., & Jie, M. (2017). The use of linguistic cues in sentence comprehension by Mandarin-speaking children with high-functioning autism. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 47(1), 17-32. doi:10.1007/s10803-016-2912-4.

Journal Articles (accepted for publication)

Crawford, T., Roger, P., & Candlin, S. (2017). Tracing the discursive development of rapport in intercultural nurse–patient interactions. International Journal of Applied Linguistics. Early online publication. doi: 10.1111/ijal.12166

Crawford, T., Roger, P. & Candlin, S. (accepted 20-1-2017). “Are we on the same wavelength?” International nurses and the process of confronting and adjusting to clinical communication in Australia. Communication & Medicine, 13(3).

Geçkin, V., Thornton, R. & Crain, S. (2017). Children’s interpretation of disjunction in negative sentences: A comparison of Turkish and German. Language Acquisition. Published online 20 March 2017.

Hagedorn, C., Proctor, M., Goldstein, L., Wilson, S. M., Miller, B., Tempini, M. L. G., & Narayanan, S. S. (2017). Characterizing Covert Articulation in Apraxic Speech Using real-time MRI. Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, 1-15.

Khetrapal, N. & Thornton, R. (2017.) C-command in the grammars of children with high-functioning autism. Frontiers in Psychology, 8:402. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2017.00402.  Published online 28 March 2017.

Rombough, K. &Thornton, R.  (2017).Answers to questions in children with specific language impairment. International Journal of Speech Language Pathology. Published online 14 Feb  2017.

Tsukada, K., Cox, F., Hajek, J. & Hirata, Y. (accepted 16-3-17). Non-native Japanese learners’ perception of consonant length in Italian and Japanese, Second Language Research.

Yates, L. & Kozar, O. (accepted 1-2017). Factors in language learning after 40: Insights from a longitudinal study. International Review of Applied Linguistics and Language Teaching.

Chapters in Edited Volumes

Benson, P. (2017) Teacher autonomy and teacher agency. In G. Barkhuizen (Ed.), Reflections on language teacher identity research (pp. 18-23). London: Routledge.

Benson, P. (2016). Learner autonomy. In G. Hall (Ed.), The Routledge Handbook of English Language Teaching (pp. 339-352). London: Routledge.

Buzo, A. F. (2016). North Korea under Kim Jong Il. In Routledge Handbook of Modern Korean History. London: Routledge.

Demuth, K. (2017). Understanding the development of prosodic words: the role of the lexicon. In Prieto, P. & Esteve-Gibert, N. (Eds.), Prosodic Development in First Language Acquisition. Mouton de Gruyter.

File, K. A., & Wilson, N. (2017). Adapting self for private and public audiences: The enactment of leadership identity by New Zealand rugby coaches in huddles and interviews. In D. Van De Mieroop & S. Schnurr (Eds.), Identity Struggles. Evidence from Workplaces around the World (pp. 321–327). Amsterdam: John Benjamins.

Kruger, H., & Kruger, J. L. (2017). Cognition and reception. In J. Schwieter & A. Ferreira (Eds.), The handbook of translation and cognition (pp. 71-89). London: Wiley-Blackwell.

Kruger, H. (2017). A corpus-based study of the effects of editorial intervention: Implications for the features of translated language. In G. De Sutter, I. Delaere & M.-A. Lefer (Eds.), Empirical translation studies: New methodological and theoretical traditions (TiLSM series 300) (pp. 113-156). Berlin: De Gruyter.

Moore, S. H. (2017). A case study of EMI and assessment in Cambodia. In B. Fenton-Smith, P. Humphreys, and I. Walkinshaw (Eds.). English medium instruction in higher education in Asia-Pacific: From policy to pedagogy, pp. 173-191. Dordrecht, NL: Springer.

Wilson, N. (2017). Developing Distributed Leadership: Leadership Emergence in a Sporting Context. In C. Ilie & S. Schnurr (Eds.), Challenging leadership stereotypes through discourse: Power, management and gender. New York: Springer.

Wilson, N. (2017). Linguistic Ethnography. In B. Vine (Eds.), The Routledge Handbook of Language in the Workplace. Abingdon: Routledge.

Book Review

Kruger, H. (2016). No longer at ease: Accented futures: Language activism and the ending of apartheid (Carli Coetzee). Journal of African History57(3): 484-487.

Conference Proceedings

Benders, T. (2016). Emotion-related explanations of the vowel variability in infant-directed speech. In C. Carignan, & M.D. Tyler (Eds.), Proceedings of the 16th Australasian International Conference on Speech Science and Technology (pp. 21-236). Sydney: Australasian Speech Science and Technology Assoc.

Davies, B., Xu Rattanasone, N., & Demuth, K. (2016). The effects of allomorphic variation on children's acquisition of plural morphology. In C. Carignan, & M.D. Tyler (Eds.), Proceedings of the 16th Australasian International Conference on Speech Science and Technology (pp. 101). Sydney: Australasian Speech Science and Technology Assoc.

Szalay, A., Benders, T., Cox, F., & Proctor, M. (2016).  Disambiguation of Australian English vowels. In C. Carignan, & M.D. Tyler (Eds.), Proceedings of the 16th Australasian International Conference on Speech Science and Technology (pp. 73-76). Sydney: Australasian Speech Science and Technology Assoc.

Woolard, A., Benders, T. Campbell, L.E., Karayanidis, F., Whalen, O., & Lane, A.E. (2016).   Exploring the Association of Infant Temperament on Maternal Fundamental Frequency Contours. In C. Carignan, & M.D. Tyler (Eds.), Proceedings of the 16th Australasian International Conference on Speech Science and Technology (pp. 229-232). Sydney: Australasian Speech Science and Technology Assoc.

Xu Rattanasone, N., Tang, P., & Demuth, K. (2016). 3-year olds produce pitch contours consistent with Mandarin Tone 3 Sandhi. In C. Carignan, & M.D. Tyler (Eds.), Proceedings of the 16th Australasian International Conference on Speech Science and Technology (pp. 5). Sydney: Australasian Speech Science and Technology Assoc.

Yuen, I., Xu Rattanasone, N., Schmidt, E., Macdonald, G., Holt, R., & Demuth, K. (2016). Accentual lengthening in 5-year-old AusE-speaking children: Preliminary results. In C. Carignan, & M.D. Tyler (Eds.), Proceedings of the 16th Australasian International Conference on Speech Science and Technology (pp. 21). Sydney: Australasian Speech Science and Technology Assoc.

Conference Presentations

Jackson, J., Barkhuizen, G., Benson, P., and Sun, T. (2017). Tracing the developmental trajectories of Chinese exchange students in Australasia. Asia-Pacific Association of International Education Conference. Kaohsiung, Taiwan, 19-24 March 2017.

Benson, P. (2016). Hong Kong 1957: Mambo Girl meets Margo the Z Bomb. Inter-asia Popular Music Studies Conference, Monash University, Melbourne, 11-12 December.

Keynote Addresses

Benson, P. (2017). Ways of seeing: The individual and the social in Applied Linguistics research methodologies. International Conference on the Teaching and Learning of Languages. Kuching, Malaysia, 3-4 April 2017.

Benson, P. (2016). Teachers’ perspectives on independent learning. Independent Learning Association Conference. Wuhan, 4-6 November, 2016.

Invited Talks

Benders, T. (2016, December). Chair of “Building solid foundations: How different environments impact children's learning and lives”. Colloquium at the Macquarie Minds Showcase, Macquarie University, Sydney.

Content owner: Department of Linguistics Last updated: 12 Mar 2020 10:55am

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