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Language and Mind

Language and Mind


Our research on Language and Mind is naturally interdisciplinary, with a focus on language and cognition in a range of social, educational and communication contexts. Research topics span the areas of language acquisition, language impairments and special educational needs, metaphor and other types of figurative language, politeness, communication and perception, informal learning, student engagement and motivation.

Our research foci fall into several overlapping themes:

1. Language acquisition: This work covers research on many topics in psycholinguistics and largely uses experimental methods. Research includes bilingualism and second language acquisition, the relationship between thought and language in both children and adults.

2. Language impairment and special educational needs: Research in this area focuses on the requirements of students with special educational needs, especially with developmental and/or linguistic disorders (e.g. Autism). 

3. Cognitive linguistics: We use a range methods, including cognitive discourse analysis, cognitive and discursive approaches to metaphor and image schemas, conceptual blending, narrative analysis, multimodality and corpus linguistics, to study language and discourse in a wide range of contexts. Much of our work is focused on metaphors and other types of figurative language.

4. Informal learning and learning in relation to teaching practices: This work explores the relation between learning and teaching by considering learning contexts, including teacher beliefs and practices as well as the linguistic environments to which students are exposed. Research also examines links between adult-child conversation and children's ideas about science, social pedagogy and relational approaches to learning nationally and internationally.

Staff contributors

Chris Tang, Eva Ogiermann, Gabriella Rundblad, Jill Hohenstein, Karen Skilling, Olivia Knapton.

PhD students

Emma Browning

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