I joined the Department of Higher Education in January 2017. I am responsible for overseeing and supporting the Surrey Excellence in Teaching (SET) Framework, as well as contributing to the MA in Higher Education and Continuing Professional Development (CPD) workshops and sessions. Prior to this I was Senior Lecturer in TESOL in the Sheffield Institute of Education at Sheffield Hallam University, teaching both undergraduate and postgraduate modules in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL), Second Language Acquisition, Research, and English for Academic Purposes (EAP). From 2009 - 2015 I worked as a lecturer at Zayed University, Dubai where I taught courses in the Department of English and Writing Studies and the Department of Education. From 1990 - 2009 I taught at Bilkent University, Ankara, in the School of English Language and the Graduate School of Education, working with pre-service English language teacher trainees.My doctoral research focused on the construction of teaching knowledge in pre-service trainees. This interest in the application of sociocultural theory to different learning contexts continues to be my main area of scholarly work. See the section on Research for a list of current research areas.
I research in the following areas:
Classroom interaction and discourse
Having spent many years in higher education and with a disciplinary background in linguistics I have developed in an interest in classroom interaction and classroom discourse. My work has mostly centred around small group teaching in which I explore how teachers and students develop conceptual understanding through the language they use in interaction. In particular, I focus on the dialogic interaction and its relationship to learning. As part of this research I have also focused on raising teachers’ awareness of the centrality of classroom talk in co-constructing understanding.
Writing and genre studies
Due to my background in English language teaching I have developed a research and teaching interest in the analysis of written texts through genre analysis, as well as an interest in exploring writing experiences. I am particularly committed to using genre analysis to support academic writer development, both student and teacher.
Professional development and observations
I have been involved in teacher development and training for over 25 years, both in the UK and internationally. My own doctoral studies focused on how teachers construct understanding of teaching through the post-observation feedback session. This area of interest transcends most of my work and I strive to explore teacher education experiences from a linguistic perspective.
Oracy skills in higher education
Traditionally higher education has supported literacy development of students (reading and writing) whilst oracy development (speaking and listening) has been given little attention. Again due to my experience of teaching English to non-native speakers of English, I have a vested interest in ensuring that students have the necessary oracy skills to be successful and achieve in their higher education studies and beyond. Similarly I have interested in ensuring that all students have equitable participation opportunities through their own oracy skills.
Postgraduate research supervision
I am currently supervising the following students and topics:
Ayesha Mudhaffer Developing speaking skills of ELI Saudi college students at KAU by adopting a communicative language teaching (CLT) approach
Easd Bodur Effects of practical elements in teacher education programmes on students' Pedagogical Content Knowledge
Hanaa Abdullah Al-Ghamdi : Promoting English Foreign language students’ willingness to communicate through teacher classroom behaviour and strategies in the Saudi context
Raniah Kabooha The effects and perceptions of integrating physical comedy on Saudi EFL tertiary students' lexis acquisition affect and motivation
Lingyu Wang English as a medium of instruction (EMI) in China
Adeeba Ahmad Chinese Language Learning in Educational Institutions of Pakistan
Beyza Uçar The Effect of Flipped Learning Approach on Teacher Candidates’ Argumentation Skills.
Hebba Himdi Exploring the Perceptions of Saudi and Chinese 'Z Generation' English Language Learners of the Desired Qualities of EL Teachers.
Dina Mousawa The Role of Using Mobile Assisted Language Learning to promote EFL Female University Learners’ Autonomy in the ELI at KAU
Razan Al Adwan Refusal Strategies and Misunderstanding in Jordanian Arabic and British English
I teach on postgraduate taught courses (MA TESOL - Second Language Acquisition). I also supervise PhD students in the areas of language acquisition and language teaching. I teach on the Graduate Certificate in Learning and Teaching for staff and also run sessions for the Open Pathway for Fellowship.
Courses I teach on
The aim of this study was to explore how experienced teachers use classroom talk to support their pedagogic goals in pre-sessional and in-sessional EAP lessons.Design
Data were gathered by video recording four teachers’ EAP lessons. A framework which identified scaffolding for metacognitive, cognitive and affective activities was used to examine how the four teachers supported pre-sessional and in-sessional students’ understanding of academic language and discourse practices.Findings
The data revealed that although scaffolding of language and affect are prevalent, goal-focused metacognitive scaffolding was a distinct feature of in-sessional EAP lessons. The findings suggest that pre-sessional EAP teachers could provide more goal-oriented scaffolding by linking activities to the overall EAP goals.Originality
The originality of this article lies in the identification of potential differences between pre-sessional and in-sessional EAP classroom talk. In particular, a more ‘efficient’ type of in-sessional classroom talk was identified. The implications of this study lie in teacher development for teachers moving from general ELT to EAP, as well as the potential use of classroom transcripts as a tool for analysis and reflection on practice.
Concept maps have been used extensively for developing higher order thinking skills and are considered significant artefacts in constructing understanding in educational contexts. Increasingly, they are being used as a tool to chart a way towards ‘new understanding’ rather than recording ‘accepted knowledge’. This study is set in an academic development department in a UK higher education institution in which previous research projects have utilised concept map-mediated interviews as a tool in data collection. This paper reports on the relationship between the process of the concept map-mediated interview and the resulting concept map and focuses on the talk during the interview process.Purpose:
The purpose of the study was to explore the co-constructed nature of the concept map which resulted from the concept map interview. The research question was: how is the concept map accomplished through and in the interview talk?Sample:
The three researchers and authors of this paper are colleagues in an Academic Development department in a UK higher education institution. The focus of the interview was to probe the research perspective underpinning the practice of one of the authors.Design and methods:
The study used a qualitative, unstructured concept map interview. The aim of the interview was to elicit an understanding of one of the authors’ research frame and how it influenced her work with staff. The interviewer noted labels on post-it notes during the interview which both participants then arranged on a sheet of paper. The interview lasted 36 minutes and was transcribed verbatim. Sociocultural discourse analysis was used to examine the trajectory of concepts in the interview talk.Results:
The results highlight the collaborative nature of the interview and how the concept map is co-constructed through the interview talk. We demonstrate how the concept map is co-constructed through and in the dialogue between interviewer and interviewee, not as a result of the interview. Results also reveal how the context of acquaintance interviews impacts on the co-construction and thus the resulting concept map.Conclusions:
A concept map which results from such an interview is co-constructed with the interviewer playing a pivotal role in the talk and the mapping. The implications are that the interview as research tool needs to be recognised as a site for the co-construction of ideas and perspectives. Concept maps resulting from interviews need to be recognised as co-constructed. A further implication for research methods is that the transcripts from the interview itself can be used as data to provide a richer understanding of the concept map.