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Dr Richard Smith

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Job Title
Applied Linguistics
+44 (0)24-7652-4987
Research Interests

As an applied linguist and language teacher educator, I am interested in a range of language learning and teaching issues, especially in relation to the worldwide learning and teaching of English for speakers of other languages, I have particular professional / research interests and supervise research students (20+ PhD completions to date) in the following broad areas: History of language teaching & applied linguistics; 'Decentring' ELT/TESOL; Language textbook research; 'Local pedagogies' in ELT/TESOL, including approaches to teaching English in 'difficult circumstances'; Pedagogy of autonomy, including language teacher autonomy; and capacity-building in ELT/TESOL research, including teacher-research.


Before coming to Warwick in January 2000, I taught in France and - for a period of 13 years - Japan. My doctoral research was in the area of history of language teaching, and in 2002 I founded the Warwick ELT Archive, a unique collection of materials relating to the history of teaching English as a second/foreign language, c.1880-1980. I am a member of the Executive Committee of the Henry Sweet Society for the History of Linguistic Ideas and, until recently, co-edited the Society's journal, 'Language & History'. In 2008 I was elected joint convenor of the AILA (International Association of Applied Linguistics) Research Network on Learner Autonomy (re-elected for 2011-14) and served as coordinator of the IATEFL Research SIG from 2011 to 2015, and then as chair of the steering committee of the International Festival of Teacher-research in ELT 2017?18. I am also a member (formerly, Deputy Chair) of the Board of Trustees of the A.S. Hornby Educational Trust, am a founding coordinator of the AILA Research Network on History of Language Learning and Teaching (, a member of the Executive Committee of the British Association for Applied Linguistics and Key Concepts Editor for the ELT Journal (Oxford University Press).

Title Funder Award start Award end
Development of the ELT Research Survey of India British Council 01 Nov 2013 30 Jun 2016
Building an Archive and a Record of British Council Involvement with ELT, 1934-2009 British Council 30 May 2014 31 May 2015
Towards a History of Modern Foreign Language Teaching and Learning (MFLTL) AHRC 15 Jul 2012 14 Jul 2014
Directory of UK ELT Research British Council 22 Jan 2013 31 Jul 2013
Supplement to Building an archive and a record history of the British Council involvement with ELT 1934-2009 British Council 13 Jul 2011 31 Dec 2011
Directory of UK ELT research British Council (Manchester) 21 Jan 2011 01 Apr 2011
Building an Archive and a Record of the History of the British Council Involvement with ELT, 1934-2009 British Council 01 Jan 2010 31 Dec 2010
Directory of the UK ELT Research 2005-2008: Adding value to the database British Council 25 Jan 2010 30 Nov 2010
EXTENSION - An Archive and Record of UK Funded ELT Projects, 1950 onwards British Council 12 Jul 2009 31 Dec 2009
An Archive and Record of UK-funded ELT Projects, 1950 onwards British Council 12 Jan 2009 31 Jul 2009
ELT Archive Enhancement Programme 2008-09 British Council 12 Jan 2009 31 May 2009
The State of ELT Research in the UK Today British Council 01 Jan 2009 31 May 2009






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