Research description : This research aims to investigate the ways in which second language L2 users of English for Academic Purposes EAP process cohesive devices in written academic texts. Specifically, it will firstly use eye-tracking technology to identify to what extent L2 readers engage with grammatical and lexical cohesive markers during reading, as well as areas where comprehension difficulties may occur. Secondly, it will use stimulated recall interviews to investigate potential causes for any processing difficulties identified through analysis of the eye-tracking data.
This research seeks to make contributions to both practical pedagogy as well as theoretical understandings of L2 reading processes. In terms of pedagogy, it aims to investigate whether there are differences in the ways that successful and less successful readers process cohesive devices in academic texts, in the hope that such insights may be used to inform the development of materials and class room approaches used to help struggling readers achieve their academic goals.
In terms of its theoretical aims, this research intends to build on the work of linguists and written discourse analysts, such as Michael Halliday, Eugene Winter and Michael Hoey, to investigate the extent to which their findings regarding grammatical clause construction, inter-clausal grammatical relationships, as well as extended discourse patterns and their grammatical or lexical signaling, appear to have psychological reality to second language readers.
As a corollary, this research further intends to shed light on the ways in which L2 readers use lexical and grammatical cohesive markers to establish relationships of coherence between ideas in adjacent sentences, paragraphs and extended passages of text as they attempt to develop an extended cognitive model of the text being read. I will concentrate on Senegal, an emerging digital environment where initiatives and the will to promote Information and Communication Technologies ICTs in adult literacy, in particular among girls and women, have inspired other countries like Kenya and Nigeria.
The empirical data I will collect could provide a critical perspective on the context of intervention and insights regarding implications for pedagogy in the area of digital literacy. Digital literacy is of growing importance in all areas of the world.
It is not only a question of mastering the digital devices themselves but crucially, to know how to engage with meaning in the digital environment. Therefore, in this digital age, the major concern has become the gap between those who are digitally literate and those who are not. Indeed, UNESCO has highlighted that mastering higher-order literacy skills is a key element in the development of knowledge societies.
In the educational arena, the adoption of ICTs has been at the core of the debates for the past twenty years. Many questions on pedagogical implications have been raised, education policies reviewed and financial investments made in schools and home; however, the outcomes do not seem to meet the promise to address the digital needs of 21st century education. Much research on ICTs and education has underpinned the continuity of traditional methods in teaching and learning practices.
Educational researchers pinpoint that the curricula do not encompass the features of the information and communication media used by 21st century learners in their everyday practices nor reflect the speed with which these are evolving. Most studies on adult learning and technology seem to be conducted in the North.
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The few studies in the Global South, seem to mainly look at quantitative aspects. At the policy level, these studies are limited in how far they can provide in depth insights into the uses and meanings of literacy practices with ICTs. To fill this gap, my study attempts to answer the following question: What are the individual aspirations and experiences of community members in Malika with regard to digital literacy? I will approach community members of Malika, a town in the large suburb of Dakar, some of them may be engaged in an adult literacy programme using ICTs.
The analysis of digital practices in Senegal will be multilevel and aimed at contextually defining digital literacy and analysing the ethnographic data within the promotion of ICTs at policy and adult literacy programme levels. Research project : The discursive construction of identities for 1st year BA architecture students. Research description : In a political climate where tensions around race, ethnicity and social class have surfaced as separate but increasingly urgent questions of social justice, universities are faced with addressing stubborn racial, ethnic and class-based inequalities in outcomes for students from Black and Minority Ethnic BME , and lower socioeconomic backgrounds.
However, the fixed and separate identity categories employed in statistically-driven efforts to address inequalities are at odds with the fluid intersectional understandings of identity provided by contemporary social and cultural theory Fraser, ; Hall, ; Gilroy, Furthermore, at a policy-level, the Higher Education Funding Council for England HEFCE note that the causes of different outcomes involve a complex mix of wider socio-historical structures, the social contexts of individual Higher Education HE providers, and day-to-day communication between staff and students at the level of micro-interaction HEFCE et al, ii.
The need for research into the complexities of identity has been highlighted in a number of recent reviews of inequalities in Higher Education and Architectural Education. Meanwhile, reliable reporting of socio-economic classification has been unavailable due to high percentages of missing data Woodfield, Research within the architecture profession shows particularly stark inequalities.
The research project aims to explore processes of identification beyond and across categories of race, ethnicity and social class using sociolinguistics. It will do this by working with first year architecture students to explore the different ways in which identities emerge in interaction over the first year of study. The project takes a linguistic ethnographic approach that connects day-to-day interactions with wider social structures and processes.
It will use interviews, linguistic analysis of audio recordings and observations of architecture studio interactions to better understand the ways in which these identifications correspond to, resist, and rework the identity categories used in policy initiatives aiming to address inequalities in education. The analysis of these accounts will draw on and inform relevant social and cultural theory with the aim of providing research capable of contributing to policy initiatives responding to inequalities in HE.
Shared reading between parents and young children has been shown to offer a range of benefits to young children, including advances in language and cognitive development. The nature of the shared reading experience appears to determine its effectiveness.
To explore this hypothesis, a longitudinal DR intervention will be delivered by parents of month old children over a 6-month period. Both treatment groups will be encouraged to engage in daily shared reading with their child, but parents in the TG-DR group will additionally receive initial and refresher training sessions in standardised DR procedures Whitehurst et al, a. Children will be assessed on a range of vocabulary and receptive language measures at baseline, post-intervention, and after a delay prior to school entry. It will focus on how DR supports the mapping of new vocabulary to semantic concepts, as well as the influence of demographic characteristics on the effectiveness of the intervention.
This research has clear implications for evidence-based policy and practice. As DR is relatively cheap and easy-to-implement, findings from this study may directly inform new family-focused interventions used by early childhood education initiatives, as well as community-based projects, including library programmes and book-initiatives. The findings will also have implications for ante- and postnatal guidance provided to parents on how to support and promote language development. Research project : Quality education for youth: A case study of secondary education provision in Ghana.
Research description : Sustainable Development Goal 4 SDG 4 is central to the current global education policy agenda being rolled out worldwide until This learning crisis has significant implications for socio-economic development across the world and is acutely felt in sub-Saharan Africa SSA. SSA governments are rapidly moving towards Universal Secondary Education USE policies in pursuit of a higher skilled workforce and stronger economic growth.
Despite this, the global education and research community is yet to engage in debates on the myriad of challenges this presents and its wider policy and socio-economic implications. Furthermore, much of the existing research on education in SSA focuses on primary, vocational and tertiary education.
Ghana presents a fruitful context for this research in light of the multiple ambitious education reforms currently taking place, including USE which was established in The overarching research question will explore how quality and expectations of USE are conceptualised and enacted by different stakeholders across different categories of schools and its implications for education delivery and the wider economy. Using interpretive and social constructivist approaches, this research will employ qualitative methods and a case study methodology. In line with scholarly works in the field, the focus of the research emanates from personal professional experiences as a consultant, researcher and donor programme manager in Ghana, Malawi and Rwanda.
In particular, when engaging in early USE research in Ghana, it was abundantly clear that the challenges of the MDGs were resurfacing and rapid expansion to secondary education required a different approach.
Moreover, the ways in which global frameworks are adapted and contested in practice is rarely explored. This research will be of interest to a wide range of stakeholders focused on global education, youth, employability and skills. This includes academics, policymakers, education ministries, development agencies and practitioners as well as education financing partners.
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Furthermore, this research is expected to contribute to ongoing academic debates around quality, contingent constructivism and analysis of Learner Centred Education in the Global South. Research description : In England, an average of 35 young people per day face permanent exclusion, which means that their access to a specific school or college is irrevocably revoked and they are removed from rolls.
While this was formerly reserved for only the most serious offences, it is increasingly being used following escalating sanctions for issues such as general defiance and disobedience. The pathways open to a young person following this are reduced - many will struggle to find another mainstream school place and may enter alternative provision units or home education. As numbers continue to increase, the need to find solutions which allow mainstream education to be open to all has become critical, particularly as permanent exclusions have been linked to poorer life outcomes.
However, research is starkly divided between intervention-based studies, which are generally experimental in nature and sparser in terms of theory, and interview-based studies which describe the experiences of young people, teachers and caregivers involved in the formal exclusion process, and often seek to generate theory. Recently, there have been calls for interventions to be more solidly grounded in theory which requires a greater understanding of the process itself.
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To address this question, it is necessary to investigate the exclusions process in situ. This study will use a systems-based framework von Bertalanffy, to consider how the perspectives of young people and their life experiences intersect with the sociopolical milieu in which they are located, paying attention not only to micro-level interactions but to how this relates to the national- and school-level policy contexts. It will begin drawing together elements of both pre- and post-exclusion literature by working with young people who have been identified by their academies as at risk of permanent exclusion.
Participants will be recruited from mainstream secondary academies - the most common type of secondary institution, and the one most likely to exclude. The study will seek to begin bridging the gap between pre- and post-exclusion literature, by generating theory from data collected during the same time period that interventions pre-exclusion would normally occur.
Furthermore, it will seek to provide teachers and teaching unions with research which can support them in demanding change for young people; in the current political environment, this has proved challenging without an abundance of evidence. It is hoped that by contributing to a growing body of literature, this study will help to effect change in the educational sector. Research project : How the folk resurgence in England is influenced by recent changing conceptions of national identity i.
Research description : I'm going to be doing fieldwork at locations and events of recently revived or created folk rituals in England. My methods will include participant observation, in which I will attempt to analyse the representations contained within the rituals, and individual interviews, through which participants will give me their own beliefs about the representations within the rituals, after which I will ask wider questions about nationality, race, Brexit and the English political climate, folk history and what it means to be culturally from the region in which the ritual takes place and wider, England.
I'll also be doing archival research to create an understanding of the motivational context in which each ritual was originally revived or created. Research project : Black labour: African migrant networks and agricultural work in the south of Italy. Research description : This project is an analysis of the cultural and socio-economic impacts of undocumented labour migration from Africa to Europe.
The aim of the research topic is to investigate and analyze the political and economic issues that the illegal entry and stay of migrants produces on European local economies and labour standards. The case study takes into consideration the labour migration flows from Sub-Saharan African countries to Europe with Italy as the first step in the migration project towards Northern European countries.
The research topic focuses, more precisely, on seasonal Sub-Saharan African migrant labour in the agricultural sector in the South of Italy. In fact, most of the migrant workers are contracted on a daily basis and will offer their labour in the early hours of the day. I will investigate the modes of action of systemic structural undocumented migrant exploitation in Italy and the reasons behind a South-North internal European migrant flow trajectory.
In fact, throughout ethnographic participant observation and interviewing processes, I will address the rhetorical construction of migrant utopias and destination countries, such as England and in particular the London area. This type of research is fundamental for the management of migration throughout Europe. Research description : In my PhD, I am researching the identities and experiences of people from the North of England who have migrated to London. I aim to contribute to understandings of issues of migration and locality and how they play into the formation of national identities and cultural distinctions.
My research interests are in nationality, culture and identity; the English North-South divide; and transregional migration within England. Research description : Encampment has been a central pillar of migration governance in the Global South for most of the 20th century.
Since the turn of the 21st, camps and other spaces designed to contain certain sectors of the population have proliferated across the Global North, notably along and within the borders of Europe. Within camp spaces, logics of exclusion interact with logics of normalisation, integration and transformation.
The central research question is therefore: How are the contradictory logics of integration and exclusion manifested, articulated and experienced in a camp setting? Bringing the embodied performances of homeless dwelling and their spatial contexts to the fore, I seek to disrupt the dominant and homogeneous discourse portraying a singular homeless city and reveal the ways in which both people and places are created in and through precariousness.
Research description : Debates of new student geographies in political, policy and media discourses have surrounded discursive themes of an increasing lack of affordable housing Kinton, Through in-depth research utilising a mixed methods approach, this research aims to address the gap in existing literature and produce insights relevant to universities and higher education institutions HEIs , policy makers and property developers alike.
The research aims to advance the burgeoning field of zemiology and in doing so arguing for a social harm approach within geographical studies. The research will sit at the intersection of a number of interrelated bodies of literature, drawing new connections between work on student geographies, urban change, housing studies and zemiology, whilst seeking to position the Irish experience within emergent literature. Research project : From the street to the stadium and back again?
The neoliberalisation of skateboarding. Research description : This project looks at skateboarding's debut inclusion into the Tokyo Olympic Games, taking this inclusion as an example of further entrenchment of the neoliberal doctrine into skateboarding. It seeks to explore and analyse how the emergence of an internationally competitive and regulated form of the sport will effects skateboarding more generally as an urban activity, lifestyle and subculture. Whilst some are embracing its inclusion, due to the increased population it is expected to lead to, others argue that it is driving a wedge between what skateboarding is and what it is branded as.
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