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Review of selected research in applied linguistics published in Australia (2008–2014)

  • Rhonda Oliver (a1), Honglin Chen (a2) and Stephen Moore (a3)


This article reviews the significant and diverse range of research in applied linguistics published in Australia in the period 2008–2014. Whilst acknowledging that a great deal of research by Australian scholars has been published internationally during these seven years, this review is based on books, journal articles, and conference proceedings published in Australia. Many of these sources will be unfamiliar to an international audience, and the purpose of this article is to highlight this body of research and the themes emerging from it. The journals selected in this review include Australian Journal of Language and Literacy, Australian Review of Applied Linguistics (ARAL), BABEL, English in Australia, English Australia, Papers in Language Testing and Assessment, Prospect: An Australian Journal of TESOL, TESOL in Context, and University of Sydney Papers in TESOL. Selected refereed proceedings are from key national conferences including: ALAA (Applied Linguistics Association of Australia), ACTA (Australian Council of TESOL Association), ASFLA (Australian Systemic Functional Linguistics Association), and ALS (Australian Linguistics Society). Our review of selected applied linguistics work revolves around the following themes: the responses to the needs of government planning and policy; the complexity of Australia's multicultural, multilingual society; the concern for recognizing context and culture as key factors in language and language learning; social activism in supporting language pedagogy and literacy programmes at all levels of education; and acknowledgement of the unique place held by Indigenous languages and Aboriginal English in the national linguistic landscape.



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Abel, J. & Exley, B. (2008). Using Halliday's functional grammar to examine early years worded mathematics texts. Australian Journal of Language and Literacy 31.3, 227241.
ACARA (formerly National Curriculum Board) (2009). Shape of the Australian curriculum: English. Melbourne: Australian Curriculum Assessment and Reporting Authority.
ACTA (2013). Excerpt from the ACTA submission to the Senate Inquiry into ‘The effectiveness of the National Assessment Program – Literacy and Numeracy’. TESOL in Context 23.1–2, 929.
Alford, J. & Jetnikoff, A. (2011). High-challenge teaching for senior English as an additional language learners in times of change. English in Australia 46.1, 1120.
Alptekin, C. (2011). Beyond ENL norms in ELF use: A cognitive perspective on ELF output. ARAL 34.2, 148165.
Al Shatter, G. (2011). Processability approach to Arabic L2 teaching and syllabus design. ARAL 34.2, 127147.
Andrew, M. (2011). ‘The real world’: Lived literacy practices and cultural learning from community placement. Australian Journal of Language & Literacy 34.2, 219235.
Angelo, D. (2013). Identification and assessment contexts of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander learners of standard Australian English: Challenges for the language testing community. Papers in Language Testing and Assessment 2.2, 67102.
Armstrong, E. (2009). Clinical applications. In Halliday, M. A. K. & Webster, J. J. (eds.), Continuum companion to Systemic Functional Linguistics. London: Continuum, 143153.
Ashton-Hay, S. & Brookes, D. (2011). Here's a story: Using student podcasts to raise awareness of language learning strategies. English Australia Journal 26.2, 1527.
Bae, E. Y. & Oh, S. Y. (2013). Native speaker and nonnative speaker identities in repair practices of English conversation. ARAL 36.1, 2051.
Baldauf, R. & Kaplan, R. (2010). Australian applied linguistics in relation to international trends. ARAL 33.1, 04.104.32.
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Bernstein, B. (2000). Pedagogy, symbolic control, and identity: Theory, research, critique. Lanham, MD: Rowman/Littlefield.
Bitchener, J. & Storch, N. (2013). Written corrective feedback for SLA: Theoretical perspectives and empirical research. UK: Multilingual Matters.
Bloomfield, R. (2013). We really need help! Providing appropriate written feedback on the drafts of higher degree by research students for whom English is an additional language. TESOL in Context 22.2, 1735.
Booth, D. (2012). Scaffolding during the formal assessment of young EAL learners: A New Zealand case study. ARAL 35.1, 527.
Bordia, S., Wales, L., Gallois, C. & Pittam, J. (2008). Antecedents and consequences of TESOL student expectations. ARAL 31.2, 15.115.18.
Boss, B. (2008). Exploring the acquisition of German verb morphology by instructed learners. ARAL 31.2, 14.114.13.
Briguglio, C. & Watson, S. (2014). Embedding English language across the curriculum in higher education: A continuum of development support. Australian Journal of Language and Literacy 37.1, 6774.
Burns, A. (2014). Professional learning in Australian ELICOS: An action research orientation. English Australia Journal 29.2, 320.
Butler, S. (2010). Standard Australian English. Australian Style: A national bulletin on issues in Australian style and English in Australia 17.1.
Butorac, D. (2014). ‘Like the fish not in water’: How language and race mediate the social and economic inclusion of women migrants to Australia. ARAL 37.3, 234248.
Cadman, K. (2008). From system to spirit: A personal story of changing priorities in teaching English as an additional language. TESOL in Context 29.37, 2937.
Cai, W. & Lee, B. P. H. (2010). Investigating the effect of contextual clues on the processing of unfamiliar words in second language listening comprehension. ARAL 33.2, 18.118.28.
Caldwell, D. (2009). ‘Working your words’: Appraisal in the AFL post-match interview. ARAL 32.2, 13.113.17.
Campbell, E. & Storch, N. (2011). The changing face of motivation: A study of second language learners’ motivation over time. ARAL 34.2, 166192.
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Chang, G. (2014). Writing feedback as an exclusionary practice in higher education. ARAL 37.3, 262275.
Chappell, P. & Benson, K. (2013). A sustainable, collaborative, teacher-focused professional learning program for English language colleges. English Australia Journal 28.2, 320.
Chen, H. & Derewianka, B. (2009). Binaries and beyond: A Bernsteinian perspective on change in literacy education. Research Papers in Education 24.2, 223245.
Chen, H. & Harris, P. (2009). Becoming school literate parents: An ESL perspective. Australian Journal of Language & Literacy 32.2, 118135.
Chen, H. & Jones, P. (2012). Understanding metalinguistic development in beginning writers: A functional perspective. Journal of Applied Linguistics and Professional Practice 9.1, 1336.
Cheung, Y. L. (2012). Textual borrowing and citation practices of university students. English Australia Journal 28.1, 2033.
Chisari, M. (2009). Critical constructions of a national Australian identity. In Mahboob, A. & Lipovsky, C. (eds.), Studies in Applied Linguistics and Language Learning. Cambridge: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 1428.
Christie, F. & Derewianka, B. (2008). School discourse: Learning to write across the years of schooling. London and New York: Continuum.
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Clyne, M. (2005). Australia's language potential. Sydney: University of New South Wales Press.
Clyne, M. & Sharifian, F. (2008). English as an international language: Challenges and possibilities. ARAL 31.3, 28.1–28.16.
Cope, N. (2011). Evaluating locally-developed language testing: A predictive study of ‘direct entry’ language programs at an Australian university. ARAL 34.1, 4059.
Coxhead, A. (2011). ’What is the exact word in English?’: Investigating second language vocabulary use in writing. English Australia Journal 27.1, 318.
Cross, R. (2011). Monolingual curriculum frameworks, multilingual literacy development: ESL teachers’ beliefs. Australian Journal of Language and Literacy 34.2, 166180.
Crossman, J., Liu, Y. & Tang, J. (2008). Sharing spaces: Perceptions of university teaching and learning in China and Australia and their relation to Western educational literature. TESOL in Context 17.2, 2127.
Crozet, C. (2008). Australia's linguistic culture and its impact on languages education. BABEL 42.3, 1926.
Cruickshank, K. (2012). Constructions of language and learner identity in the classroom: Confessions of a failure. ARAL 35.2, 170182.
Daly, A. & Unsworth, L. (2011). Analysis and comprehension of multimodal texts. ARAL 34.1, 6180.
Dang, T. T. & Robertson, M. (2010). Pedagogical lessons from students’ participation in Web 2.0. TESOL in Context 20.2, 526.
Dargusch, J. (2010). Formative assessment in Year 12 English: A conceptual framework. English in Australia 45.3, 4149.
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Dawson, J. (2011). Implementing good practice principles for English language proficiency: A case study. English Australia Journal 26.2, 414.
Denny, H., Couper, G., Healy, J., Macdonald, F., Sachtleben, A. & Watkins, A. (2014). Teaching pragmatics: An action research journey. English Australia Journal 30.1, 322.
Department of Education Western Australia (2012). Tracks to two-way learning. East Perth, WA: West One Services.
Derewianka, B. (2008). Venturing beyond YouTube: Learning the language of appraisal. TESOL in Context 18.2, 4258.
Derewianka, B. (2012). Knowledge about language in the Australian curriculum: English. Australian Journal of Language & Literacy 35.2, 127146.
Devaraj, S. & Goodman-Delahunty, J. (2009). Dialect and credibility judgements of Indigenous Australian suspects. In Mahboob, A. & Lipovsky, C. (eds.), 73–84.
Devlin, B. (2011). The status and future of bilingual education for remote Indigenous students in the Northern Territory. ARAL 34.3, 260279.
Dibaj, F. (2011). Vocabulary learning: A comparison of learners of English as a second and third language. ARAL 34.2, 193215.
Di Biase, B., Bettoni, C. & Nuzzo, E. (2009). Postverbal subject in Italian L2: A Processability Theory approach. In Keatinge, D. & Kessler, J.-U. (eds.), Research in Second Language Acquisition: Empirical evidence across languages. Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars, 153173.
Dixon, S. (2013). Educational failure or success: Aboriginal children's non-standard English utterances. ARAL 36.3, 302315.
Dixon, S. & Angelo, D. (2014). Dodgy data, language invisibility and the implications for social exclusion: A critical analysis of Indigenous student language data in Queensland schools. ARAL 37.3, 213233.
Dobinson, T. & Dunworth, K. (2009). Going it alone: Issues of transparency and accountability in the use of an in-house university test of English. English Australia Journal 25.2, 4148.
Dooey, P., Oliver, R. & Rochecouste, J. (2012). The role of motivation in the English language growth of international students after university entry. English Australia Journal 28.1, 319.
Dreher, K. (2012). Tests, testing times and literacy teaching. Australian Journal of Language & Literacy 35.3, 334352.
Dreyfus, S. (2012). When there is no speech: The limits of protolanguage. Paper presented at the International Systemic Functional Congress 2012, University of Technology Sydney, Australia.
Dunworth, K. (2010). Clothing the emperor: Addressing the issue of English language proficiency in Australian universities. Australian Universities’ Review 52.2, 510.
Dyson, B. (2010). Learner language analytic methods and pedagogical implications. ARAL 33.3, 30.130.21.
Eades, D. (2008). Telling and retelling your story in court: Questions, assumptions, and intercultural implications. Current Issues in Criminal Justice 20.2, 209230.
Eades, D. (2009). Risky narratives in courtroom testimony. Comment on Shonna Trinch's ‘Risky subjects: Narrative, literary testimonio and legal testimony’. Dialectical Anthropology 34.2, 209213.
Eades, D. (2012). The social consequences of language ideologies in courtroom cross examination. Language in Society 41.4, 471497.
Eades, D. (2013). Aboriginal ways of using English. Canberra: Aboriginal Studies Press.
Eagleson, R. D., Kaldor, S. & Malcolm, I. G. (1982). English and the Aboriginal child. Canberra: Curriculum Development Centre.
Economou, D. (2013). Hybrid photos: Evaluation and intertextuality in factual images. Paper presented at the ASFLA Conference 2013, Australian Catholic University, Melbourne.
Edwards, E. (2013). Applying action research to investigate the use of goal setting for EFL/ESL writing. English Australia Journal 29.1, 1938.
Eggins, S. & Slade, D. (2012). Clinical handover as an interactive event: Informational and interactional communication strategies in effective shift-change handovers. Communication & Medicine 9.3, 215227.
Elder, C. & Harding, L. (2008). Language testing and English as an international language. ARAL 31.3, 34.134.11.
Elder, C., McNamara, T., Woodward-Kron, R., Manias, E., McColl, G., Webb, G. & O'Hagan, S. (2013). Developing and validating language proficiency standards for non-native English speaking health professionals. Papers in Language Testing and Assessment 2.1, 6670.
Exley, B. & Cotrell, A. (2012). Reading in the Australian Curriculum – English: Describing the effects of structure and organisation on multimodal texts. English in Australia 47.2, 9198.
Fallon, F. (2010). Reasons for absences from class by international students and implications for the pastoral care of these students. English Australia Journal 26.1, 5260.
Faulkner, N. (2011). How to maximise student learning after assessment whilst minimising the pain of correction (in search of the Holy Grail). English in Australia 46.3, 8788.
Feez, S. (2014). Grammatics in the early years. Paper presented at the ASFLA Conference 2014, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia.
Fielding, R. (2011). ‘I sort of feel like I'm a part of France as well’. BABEL 46.1, 1321.
Foley, A. (2009). Using academic word lists in the communicative classroom. English Australia Journal 25.1, 1726.
Forrest, S. (2013). Boodja Marr Karl: A whole-community approach to Aboriginal education – The development of a cultural framework for Aboriginal participation in education and schooling. In Johnson, D. J et al. (eds.), Vulnerable children: Global challenges in education. New York: Springer Science+Business Media, 7181.
Freebody, P., Maton, K. & Martin, J. R. (2008). Talk, text, and knowledge in cumulative, integrated learning: A response to ‘intellectual challenge’. Australian Journal of Language & Literacy 31.2, 188201.
Freeman, L. (2013). NAPLAN: A thin veil of fairness: Excerpt from Senate Submission into the Effectiveness of NAPLAN. TESOL in Context 23.1–2, 7481.
French, R. (2012). Learning the grammatics of quoted speech: Benefits for punctuation and expressive reading. Australian Journal of Language & Literacy 35.2, 206222.
Gale, M.-A. (2011). Rekindling warm embers: Teaching Aboriginal languages in the tertiary sector. ARAL 34.3, 280296.
Garcia, A. (2012). Measuring ideology in texts: Using quantifiable tools in CDA. In Gitsaki, C. & Baldauf, R. B. (eds.), Future directions in applied linguistics: Local and global perspectives. Cambridge: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 292310.
Gardner, R. & Mushin, I. (2013). Language for learning in Indigenous classrooms: Foundations for literacy and numeracy. In Jorgensen, R. et al. (eds.), Pedagogies to enhance learning for Indigenous students: Evidence-based practice. Singapore: Springer Science+Business Media. DOI 10.1007/978-981-4021-84-5_6, 89104.
Garvey, E. (2008). Nurturing diversity in teacher education. English Australia Journal 24.2, 2737.
Gibbons, P. (2008). ‘It was taught good and I learned a lot’: Intellectual practices and ESL learners in the middle years. Australian Journal of Language and Literacy 31.2, 155173.
Gray, B. N. & Cowey, W. (2001). University of Canberra accelerated literacy program. First report to the Northern Territory Department of Education and Training. Canberra: University of Canberra.
Gvozdenko, I. & Bernat, E. (2011). Investigating beliefs about the language learning of Russian-speaking ESL learners. English Australia Journal 27.1, 3352.
Halliday, M. A. K. (1978). Language as social semiotic: The social interpretation of language and meaning. London: Edward Arnold.
Halliday, M. A. K. (1994). An introduction to functional grammar. London: Hodder.
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Hamid, M., Zhu, L. & Baldauf, R. B. (2014). Norms and varieties of English and TESOL teacher agency. Australian Journal of Teacher Education 39.10, 7795.
Hammond, J. (2008a). Challenging pedagogies: Engaging ESL students in intellectual quality. Australian Journal of Language & Literacy 31.2, 101105.
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Hammond, J. (2012). Hope and challenge in the Australian curriculum: Implications for EAL students and their teachers. Australian Journal of Language & Literacy 35.2, 223240.
Harbon, L. (2013). Another piece of the puzzle: Preparing pre-service language teachers for the Australian curriculum: Languages. BABEL 48.2–3, 3847.
Hardy, I. (2013). Testing that counts: Contesting national literacy assessment policy in complex schooling settings. Australian Journal of Language & Literacy 36.2, 6777.
Harrington, M. & Jiang, W. (2013). Focus on the forms: Form recognition practice in Chinese vocabulary learning. ARAL 36.2, 132145.
Hatoss, A. (2012). Language, faith and identity: A historical insight into discourses of language ideology and planning by the Lutheran church of Australia. ARAL 35.1, 94112.
Hatoss, A., Starks, D. & Rensburg, H. J.v. (2011). Afrikaans language maintenance in Australia. ARAL 34.1, 423.
Hill, K. (2010). Classroom-based assessment and the issue of continuity between primary and secondary school languages programs. BABEL 45.1, 413.
Hirsh, D. & Coxhead, A. (2009). Ten ways of focussing on science-specific vocabulary in EAP classrooms. English Australia Journal 25.1, 516.
Hobson, J., Lowe, K., Poetsch, S. & Walsh, M. (2010). Re-Awakening languages: Theory and practice in the revitalisation of Australia's Indigenous languages. Sydney, NSW: Sydney University Press.
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Huang, D. L. (2009). Language use in asynchronous computer-mediated communication in Taiwan. ARAL 32.2, 12.112.22.
Huhta, A. (2009). An analysis of the quality of English testing for aviation purposes in Finland. ARAL 32.3, 26.0126.14.
Humphrey, S. (2010). Enacting rhetoric in the civic domain. English in Australia 45.3, 920.
Humphrey, S. (2013). And the word became text: A 4 × 4 toolkit for scaffolding writing in secondary English. English in Australia 48.1, 4655.
Humphrey, S. & MacNaught, L. (2011). Revisiting joint construction in the tertiary context. Australian Journal of Language & Literacy 34.1, 98115.
Inge, K. (2009). Oral to literate traditions: Emerging literacies in remote Aboriginal Australia. TESOL in Context 19.2, 3449.
Inoue, M. (2009). Health sciences communication skills test: The development of a rating scale. Melbourne Papers in Language Testing 14.1, 5591.
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Macken-Horarik, M. & Harders, P. (2008). Scaffolding literacy and the Year 9 boys: Developing a language-centred literacy pedagogy. TESOL in Context 18.2, 422.
Macken-Horarik, M., Love, K. & Unsworth, L. (2011). A grammatics ‘good enough’ for school English in the 21st century: Four challenges in realising the potential. Australian Journal of Language & Literacy 34.1, 923.
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Malcolm, I. G. (2011b). Learning through standard English: Cognitive implications for post-pidgin/-creole speakers. Linguistics and Education 22.3, 261272.
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Martin, J. & Rose, D. (2008). Genre relations: Mapping culture. London: Equinox Publishing.
Martin, J. R. & White, P. R. R. (2005). The language of evaluation: Appraisal in English. Basingstoke: Palgrave MacMillan.
Martin, J., Zappavigna, M. & Dwyer, P. (2009). Negotiating narrative: Story structure and identity in youth justice conferencing. Linguistics and the Human Sciences 3.2, 221253.
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Matthiessen, C. M. I. M. (2013). Applying systemic functional linguistics in healthcare contexts. Text and Talk 33.4–5, 437467.
Matsumoto, M. (2009). Persistence in Japanese language study and learners’ cultural/linguistic backgrounds. ARAL 32.2, 10.110.17.
McDonald, L. (2010). iTESOL: Analogous practices in the SLA classroom. TESOL in Context 20.2, 4251.
McKay, G. (2011). Policies and Indigenous languages in Australia. ARAL 34.3, 297319.
McMurtrie, R. (2014). Analysing texts, surviving challenges. Paper presented at the ASFLA conference 2014, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia.
McNamara, T. (1996). Measuring second language performance. London: Longman.
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Language Teaching
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