Systemic Functional Linguistics (SFL) is extensively applied to describe disciplinary discourse and has informed large-scale academic literacy initiatives in higher education. In this session, we want to focus on the usefulness of SFL in practitioner-led, classroom-based scholarship. The case studies we present focus on different aspects of SFL, showing how they’ve illuminated a range of educational issues and data in the studies we’ve conducted in our varied contexts. We will look at the type of practitioner scholarship SFL can contribute to, such as EAP classroom based pedagogical research, and wider interdisciplinary projects. Each speaker will then explain how they apply SFL in their own scholarship. For example, we will explore the ways elements of SFL can enrich our understanding of cumulative learning/transfer. We’ll also show how evaluative meanings function in reflection texts in undergraduate nursing and how to use modality in explanation essay conclusions. We’ll introduce you to circumstances, what they are, what they’re not, and how they are useful for illuminating precise detail. Applying theoretical and analytical tools of SFL reveals discursive elements in educational discourse which can enrich our scholarship and its impact. We argue that SFL as an appliable linguistics is a useful tool not just for linguists but for any educational practitioner.
Jodie L. Martin is an educational linguist and Academic English lecturer at Vantage College, University of British Columbia, Canada, where she teaches in the Science stream. Her current teaching foci include using systemic functional linguistics to provide grammatical strategies for unpacking technicality and precision in Science, positioning sources in writing, and engaging audiences in presentations. In research, she deploys Legitimation Code Theory to figure out what she’s teaching and whether it’s working.
Jennifer Walsh Marr is an academic English lecturer at UBC Vantage College and PhD student in Language & Literacy Education at OISE (University of Toronto). Her research work has looked at intersections of power, identity and language in the academy and incorporating Systemic Functional Linguistics (SFL) and genre research into pedagogical practice.
Eric Lok-ming Cheung is a lecturer at the College of Professional and Continuing Education of The Hong Kong Polytechnic University. His major research interest lies in academic written discourse analysis at the post-secondary and tertiary level. To inform his analyses, he applies Systemic Functional Linguistics, corpus linguistics and Legitimation Code Theory.
Namala Tilakaratna is a senior lecturer at the Centre for English Language and Communication at the National University of Singapore. She has designed EAP materials for modules on public communication, CLIL and design semiotics drawing on SFL and LCT. She has published on the use of SFL and LCT to create effective pedagogy across a range of disciplines such as social work, nursing and design. She is currently co-editing (with Dr Eszter Szenes) a book on demystifying critical reflection using LCT approaches.
Laetitia Monbec is a senior lecturer at the Centre for English Language and Communication at the National University of Singapore where she has developed EAP, CLIL and ESP modules. Her scholarship explores issues in cumulative learning, academic literacy and critical thinking in higher education, often applying the complementary lenses of systemic functional linguistics and Legitimation Code Theory.