CAROLE Research Seminar Series

The Centre for Applied Research and Outreach in Language Education (CAROLE), at the University of Greenwich, is hosting a series of research seminars, delivering talks in areas of Second Language Acquisition and Applied Linguistics.

The second seminar will be presented by Dr Bill Batziakas, an Associate Lecturer at Queen Mary University of London and held Wednesday 8th March, 4-5pm, SL10

Dr Bill Batziakas

Title: English as a Multilingua Franca: Sociolinguistic observations and pedagogic implications


This presentation revolves around the spread of English around the world and its current role as the world’s most employed lingua franca for communication between speakers who come from differing linguistic backgrounds. First, it provides a brisk review of some of the various terms and models which have been put forward as an attempt to capture this spread and its implications (e.g. Kachru 1985, Modiano 1999a,b; Yano 2007).

Subsequently, it moves on to explain why it sides with the body of research which sees the paradigm of English as a Lingua Franca as a more nuanced account of the way that English is currently used in various contexts and by various speakers, as well as the ensuing implications on various linguistic levels, such as phonology, lexicogrammar and pragmatics (e.g. Jenkins, Cogo and Dewey 2011; Jenkins and Leung 2013). On the back of this, it takes into consideration Jenkins’ (2015) recent point regarding the increasingly multilingual nature of ELF interactions, whereby speakers are found to strategically employ lexis and other discursive features from both their own and their interlocutors’ linguacultural backgrounds, due to which she opts for the term English as a Multilingua Franca (cf. the work on translanguaging in e.g. Garcia and Li 2014, Lin and Lo 2016).

To illustrate this point, extracts from naturally occurring spoken interactions of international students at the University of London are presented, as well as metalinguistic comments made by students who participated in these interactions. The presentation concludes with a discussion of how such findings are pedagogically useful for curriculum design, materials development, teaching methodology, and testing.

For more information please contact: The Centre for Applied Research and Outreach in Language Education (CAROLE)

Department of Literature, Language & Theatre, University of Greenwich

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