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Theo Marinis

Theo Marinis
  • +44 (0) 118 378 7465
  • Professor in Multilingualism and Language Development

Areas of interest

My research focuses on how children and adults develop their language and literacy abilities over time, how they process language in real-time, and how language relates to other cognitive systems. The overarching aim is to understand how language develops as a cognitive system and the way it is processed across the lifespan.

To address this aim, I use off-line and on-line methodologies, including reaction time experiments, eye-tracking, and ERP experiments and compare comprehension with production, focusing on morpho-syntax (for example, the acquisition of tense and agreement, definite articles, gender, pronouns and reflexives, passives, wh-questions, and relative clauses) and its interface with discourse/pragmatics and prosody.

This research is conducted with a range of groups in the UK, Germany, Greece, India, Saudi Arabia, and Malaysia not only with typically developing children and adults but also with children who develop their language abilities in an atypical way, for example children with Specific Language Impairment/Developmental Language Disorder and children with Autism. An important part of this research agenda are cross-linguistic comparisons across groups as well as cross-linguistic comparisons within multilingual speakers.



Research centres and groups

  • Centre for Literacy & Multilingualism (CeLM)
  • Language and Cognition

Academic qualifications

  • 2009: Postgraduate Certificate in Academic Practice, University of Reading
  • 1996 - 2000: PhD in Linguistics, University of Potsdam, Germany
  • 1986 - 1991: BA (Hons) in German Language and Linguistics, University of Athens, Greece


Personal website:

The Multilingual Mind:

Multilingualism and Multiliteracy:

LITMUS-Sentence Repetition tasks:

The ProLanguage Project:

Primary Modern Languages: the impact of teaching approaches:


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