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Language, Identity and Culture Colloquium

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The School of Education is delighted to invite you to the Fifth Applied Linguistics Research Forum Colloquium: Language, Identity and Culture in Education.

Event details

This colloquium seeks to address the importance and significance of understanding language users’ cultural, social and linguistic backgrounds as crucial sites within educational practices, classrooms, and policies and is aimed at academics, scholars, teachers, practitioners, and policy-makers.

Saturday 25 May 2019
9am - 5pm
Building 500, Curtin University, Kent Street, Bentley
Standard $180 (includes morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea) , Curtin staff $90 / Curtin students $90 (includes morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea)

Keynote speakers include Professor Brian Paltridge (University of Sydney) and Professor Ian G. Malcolm (Emeritus Professor, Edith Cowan University)

Register your place

The colloquium will bring together leading and emerging applied linguists to discuss different linguistic rationales for opportunities and challenges for language, identity, and culture in critical language education contexts.

The sessions will offer new levels of analysis to common approaches to language education, offering researchers, teachers, and practitioners complex and critical perspectives of multilingual and multicultural diversity in the increasingly globalised world.

Through this conference you will gain:

  • a better understanding of Language, Identity and Culture in Language Education
  • experiences to develop approaches to language education for your personal teaching context
  • network opportunities with your peers and knowledge experts in this area
  • a certificate of professional learning.

Program of events

  • Arrival and registration
  • Welcome to country, Professor Simon Forrest
  • Welcome and introductionsAssociate Professor Craig Lambert 
  • Session 1: Current trends, critical theories and practices in language, identity and culture in educationDr. Sender Dovchin(ARC DECRA Fellow)
  • Session 2: Language, identity and communities of practice: Implications for language education, Professor Brian Paltridge (University of Sydney)
  • Morning tea
  • Session 3: Maintenance of Identity in an Adopted Language: Development and Use of Aboriginal EnglishProfessor Ian Malcolm, Emeritus Professor (Edith Cowan University)
  • Session 4: Teaching international students from Asia and the Middle EastAssociate Professor Toni Dobinson and Dr. Qian Gong
  • Lunch
  • Session 5: Workshop on research methodologies in applied linguisticsProfessor Brian Paltridge
  • Session 6: Language, identity and culture in Aboriginal EducationProfessor Rhonda Oliver 
  • Afternoon tea
  • Session 7: Critical Implications and Future Directions – roundtable discussions, Dr. Paul Mercieca
  • Wine and cheese

About your keynote speakers

Brian Paltridge is Professor of TESOL at the University of Sydney. His recent publications include Ethnographic Perspectives on Academic Writing (with Sue Starfield and Christine Tardy, Oxford University Press, 2016), Getting Published in Academic Journals (with Sue Starfield, University of Michigan Press, 2016), and The Discourse of Peer Review (Palgrave Macmillan, 2017).

He will present on Language, identity and communities of practice: Implications for language education.


This presentation discusses the relationship between language, identity, and communities of practice, as it is in our participation in communities of practice that identities are created. The ways in which people display their identities includes the way they use language and the way they interact with people. Identities are not natural, however. They are constructed, in large part, through the use of language. Identity, however, is not something that is fixed and remains the same throughout a person’s life. It is something that is constantly constructed and re- constructed as people interact with each other. Identity, further, is a two-way construction in that part of having a certain identity is that it is recognized by other people. All of this has implications for the field of language education. A number of examples will be presented which illustrate these points, from the points of view of both learners and teachers.


Professor Ian G. Malcolm is currently Emeritus Professor in the School of Arts and Humanities at Edith Cowan University, where he held the inaugural chair in Applied Linguistics from 1991 until his retirement in 2003. He was the first doctoral graduate in linguistics from the University of Western Australia in 1980, with a thesis on Classroom Communication and the Aboriginal Child (supervised by Susan Kaldor).

He will present on Maintenance of Identity in an Adopted Language: Development and use of Aboriginal English.


The maintenance of Aboriginal English by its speakers, despite the low status the variety is afforded in the general community, reflects an unwillingness, on the part of these speakers, to allow themselves to be linguistically identified by Australian English. The adoption of English by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians represents a survival strategy rather wholesale cultural exchange. This paper examines the selective processes of retention, elimination, modification and extension which were brought by Australian Indigenous speakers to the English, and English-derived varieties which they encountered. Then, drawing on research in Cultural Linguistics, it presents four predominant conceptual orientations which guided the way in which English was adopted: relational, experiential, integrative and marginal. Finally, it examines the ways in which Aboriginal English functions as an identity-marker in contemporary Australia.