Staff Profile:Wendy Smith


Acting Teaching and Learning Co-ordinator for IWLP German and IWLP English for Erasmus Students.

Module Convenor and Course Tutor for IWLP German 3 and IWLP English for Erasmus Students.

Base Section:
Institution-Wide Language Programme

Active Projects:
Having undertaken an Erasmus+ visit to the University of Düsseldorf in June 2017 to research the German language courses offered there for international students, I am hoping to facilitate a scheme whereby interested IWLP students can enrol for these during the summer vacation, allowing them to develop their language skills further and explore Germany and its culture.

Before I began working at the University of Reading in 2012, I lived in the South of Germany for five years, where I taught English as a Foreign Language and university seminars in Old and Middle English, as well as working as a proof-reader and translator.

In general, I am fascinated by all aspects of language teaching and learning, and in every course I teach I enjoy finding out something new about the many different ways in which people learn languages, and how this can be incorporated into my teaching.

In addition to completing the Cambridge CELTA qualification, I studied English and German at the University of Nottingham, and later gained an MA in Applied Linguistics from the same university via distance learning. My main field of interest, within which my dissertation was situated, was empirical studies into cross-cultural differences and how these are reflected in the language used to perform specific functions, such as requesting, apologising or thanking. For example, the way in which polite requests are made in English tends to be quite different from how they are made in German, as in many cases the language used in English would tend to be more indirect. Differences like this open up pitfalls for learners of a language and often lead to 'transfer' of patterns from the native language - another area which interests me.

A Few Personal Comments:
I am a keen learner of languages and enjoy learning Italian and French in my spare time. I also find English from the Anglo-Saxon and Medieval periods particularly interesting.

MA Applied Linguistics (University of Nottingham)
BA Joint Hons English Studies and German (University of Nottingham)
Cambridge CELTA

Areas of Interest:
Research groups / Centres:
Conferences attended (in last year):

AULC Conference, January 2019

IWLP TeachShare, June 2017; presentation: 'Reflecting on cultural differences and stereotypes'

AULC Conference, January 2016
Wendy Smith

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