Staff Profile:Professor Suzanne Graham

Professor Suzanne Graham
Job Title:
Professor of Language and Education

University and Institute of Education Responsibilities:

  • REF Unit of Assessment Lead
  • Subject Leader, Secondary Modern Foreign Languages Initial Teacher Education
  • Steering Committee, Centre for Literacy and Multilingualism


  • Subject Leader, MFL ITE
  • PhD and MA dissertation supervision
Areas of Interest:

Areas of Expertise and Research Interest:

  • Second language learner strategies and their relationship with proficiency and self-efficacy
  • Motivation for language learning, particularly at points of educational transition
  • Reading and listening comprehension in a second language
  • Creativity and language learning Second language vocabulary development

Masters, PhD and EdD Level Supervision offered in these areas:

In the areas outlined above.

Current and Recent PhD and Ed D Students, with Topics/Titles of their research:


  • Emre Debreli. The impact of teacher training programs on pre-service teachers' beliefs about teaching and learning English.
  • Tom Parkinson. How does canon formation impact upon Popular Music pedagogy at undergraduate level?
  • Radhika De Silva. Learner strategy instruction in writing (English for Specific Purposes).
  • Nantikarn Simasangyaporn. An investigation of the nature of and relationship between self-efficacy and English as a foreign language listening skill in Thai university students.
  • Suttawan Sriwantaneeyakul. Factors influencing Critical Reading development in university EFL students.
  • Jinghui Wang. Learner autonomy and computer assisted language learning for Chinese learners of English.
  • Shahla Yassaei. Teachers' reflective practice.
  • Heike Krüsemann. An investigation into the subject of German in UK schools.
  • Fang-I Chu. English learning motivation in a Taiwanese university context: A study of its dynamic nature from socio-dynamic perspectives.
  • Ruth Koro. Rethinking the Foreign Language curriculum through content and language integrated practice.
  • Pengchong Zhang. Language teaching strategies and lexical acquisition in high school English as a foreign language (EFL) context in China.
  • Mohammed Alshaikhi. Investigating Saudi English teachers’ use and perceptions of the IWB when teaching vocabulary as a Foreign Language in English classrooms in Saudi primary schools.
  • Yasir Yahya. The development and implementation of a Speaking Module in Oral Presentation among undergraduate students in Malaysia.
  • Nezha Badi. The impact of collaborative strategic reading on learners’ reading comprehension and self -efficacy. The case of EFL students in Algerian universities.
  • Keltoum Mansouri. EFL listening self-efficacy and metacognitive instruction.
  • Abrar Owaidah. The development of learner autonomy for EFL writing.

Current students:

  • Sarah Alamoudi. Learning lexical chunks through CALL.
  • Ghadeer Alghahtani. Teaching L2 idioms through cognitive-linguistics inspired approaches: An experimental study with Saudi EFL learners.
  • Areen Badri. Listening comprehension and L2 learners with visual impairment.
  • James Bury. Developing and enhancing productive language and retention of lexis among foreign language learners in Japan.
  • Gail Hickman. Vocabulary learning and self-regulation among work-based adult learners of English.
  • Barbara King. CLIL and speaking outcomes in MFL lessons in the UK context.
  • James Wagstaffe (SENSS ESRC student). Processing cohesive devices as a second language reader: A mixed methods study.
  • Chuyi Wang. Motivation and motivational strategies among Chinese as a foreign language adult learners in the UK.

Current and Recent Research Projects:

  • Access and Higher Education: Inclusive Online Learning for Deaf Students. This Leverhulme Trust funded-project is being conducted in collaboration with the University of Reading’s Department of Computer Science and two Reading-based partner organisations, Deafax and Goals4Life. The project is exploring how to adapt online materials to enhance the learning of HE students who are deaf, as well as those who have dyslexia or speak English as an additional language.
  • Linguistic Creativity in Language Learning. This project, led by Suzanne Graham in collaboration with the University of Cambridge, is the Education Strand of a large interdisciplinary project with several universities headed by Oxford, ‘Creative Multilingualism’. It is part of the Open World Research Initiative scheme, funded by the AHRC (Arts and Humanities Research Council). It explores the impact of using literary and non-literary texts on the motivation and linguistic development of learners of French and German in secondary schools. See
  • Developing the teaching of reading in Modern Foreign Languages. Funded by the Nuffield Foundation and led by the University of Oxford, this project investigated whether instruction in phonics and reading strategies can improve progress and motivation for beginner learners of French at secondary school. See
  • The Language Magician. Funded by the European Commission and in collaboration with a range of European Partners, this project builds on our Nuffield Primary Modern Languages project in creating an assessment tool for use in primary languages classrooms throughout Europe. For more details see
  • Professional Development Consortium in MFL. Supported by the ESRC Follow-on Fund, this joint project between the universities of Reading and Oxford aimed to close the divide between what research indicates are the principles of effective language teaching and learning, and current practice within the MFL curriculum. For more details see the project blog,
  • Primary Modern Languages: the impact of teaching approaches on attainment and preparedness for secondary school language learning. This project was funded by the Nuffield Foundation and was joint with colleagues from Applied Linguistics and Clinical Language Sciences. A 2-year project (2012-2014), it investigated the teaching of French in primary schools and its impact on learners' grammatical knowledge and preparedness for secondary school MFL learning. See and
  • Second language listening comprehension in England: from current practice to improved pedagogy. Funded by the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation, this project investigated teachers' beliefs about and understanding of the teaching of second language listening comprehension in its first phase. The second phase of the research developed and evaluated materials to improve teachers' ability to teach listening as a skill. These were rolled out in workshops for teachers and ITE tutors. See
  • Strategy training in Year 12 French. This Economic and Social Research Council funded project investigated the impact of a programme of strategy training on the listening and writing of Year 12 learners of French. See
Research groups / Centres:

Language and Literacy in Education: Centre for Literacy and Multilingualism.

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This list was generated on Tue Sep 28 07:35:08 2021 UTC.

Recent Conference Presentations:

  • 2015, July (with L Courtney). Primary Modern Languages: The impact of teaching approaches on attainment and preparedness for secondary school language learning. National Association of Language Advisors Annual Conference, Stratford upon Avon.
  • 2015, July. Motivational trajectories for early language learning across the primary-secondary school transition. Paper presented at the BAAL Language Learning and Teaching SIG Conference, University of Edinburgh.
  • 2014, August (with D Santos). Listening in MFL textbooks: An exploration of textual content, teachers' beliefs and classroom practice. Paper presented at the 17thWorld Congress, International Association of Applied Linguistics (AILA), Brisbane, Australia.
  • 2014, June. Primary Modern Languages: the impact of teaching approaches on attainment and preparedness for secondary school language learning. Paper presented at the Early language learning: Theory and practice in 2013 conference, Umeǻ University, Sweden.
  • 2014, June. Progress and preparedness in primary language learning: Research insights for classroom practice. Paper presented at the dissemination conference for the Nuffield Primary Project, University of Reading.
  • 2013, July (with E.Macaro). The consortium model as an instrument for Language Teacher Development: Condensing research evidence into shared principles. Invited paper presentation, University of York 50th Anniversary conference: Relations between Research and Practice.
  • 2013, March (with D. Santos). Rethinking the teaching of listening: from a focus on product to a focus on processes. Language World, Nottingham Trent University.
  • 2013, January. Secondary students' beliefs and motivations: implications for teacher development. Invited paper presentation, the Open University.
  • 2012, NovemberSecond language listening comprehension in England: strategy instruction and teacher understanding. Invited paper presentation, University of Southampton.
  • 2012, September (with D. Santos and E. Francis-Brophy). Understanding teachers' beliefs with a view to improving classroom practice: methodological perspectives for second language listening. Paper presented at the BAAL Annual Conference, University of Southampton.
  • 2011, November. Second language listening comprehension in England: strategy instruction and teacher understanding. Invited paper presentation at the Faculty of Education, University of Cambridge.
  • 2011, August (with D. Santos). Foreign language listening comprehension in England: from current practice to improved pedagogy. Paper presented at the16thWorld Congress, International Association of Applied Linguistics (AILA), Beijing.

Any Further Information:

Enterprise Activity:

  • Department for Education: Funding to provide CPD to introduce the new National Curriculum for MFL (primary and secondary schools).

External Roles and Consultancy:

  • Member of the Expert Subject Advisory Group for MFL.
  • Member of Editorial Advisory Board, Language Learning Journal and System.
  • Reviewer for Applied Linguistics, Language Awareness, The Modern Language Journal, System and The Journal of French Language Studies.
  • External Examiner, MA ELT, MA Applied Linguistics, MA Applied Linguistics (Research Methods) and the integrated PhD Applied Linguistics/ELT, University of Southampton.
  • Member of the ESRC Peer Review College.

Contact Details

+44 (0) 118 378 2684

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