Interests and Expertise
SALIS has four main research specialisms:
Citizenship Education across Cultures
The languages we speak and write, and how we use them, have profound consequences for our cognitive and social development, our ability to participate in education and employment, our access to justice and the structures of democracy, and our economic well-being. They also underpin the cultural and trade links between nations.
Given such high stakes, one of the primary concerns of our research in Applied Linguistics is how we can best harness available resources to help learners acquire second or further languages. Such resources include the language or languages a speaker already knows, the community of speakers learners have access to, and the technological tools at their disposal. Current SALIS research, for example, looks at:
How learners can draw on knowledge of other languages in English-language and Irish-language immersion schooling in Ireland
The use of virtual worlds (Second Life) in second language learning
The impact of digital technologies on students learning of Chinese characters
Applied Linguistic research is also interested in the cognitive, social and political import of the way we use language in specific contexts. Current SALIS research looks, for example, at:
The cognitive effect of impact captions on viewers of Japanese TV
The definition of medical professionalism
Neoliberalism in contemporary discourse on education
Attitudes to Hong Kong English
The development of Japanese secret lexicons
Translators and interpreters play a vital part in intercultural exchange, the spread of science and religion, international trade, conflict and conflict resolution, acting as brokers in situations where participants in communication do not share a common language. Translation is a glue that helps hold multilingual political entities together in our contemporary globalised world. It is also a multi-billion euro industry.
The Translation Studies group in SALIS conducts world-leading research into historical and contemporary theory and practice in translation and interpreting. We have particular strengths in translation technology, including machine translation, and have recently authored major new works on theories of translation, research methodologies in translation studies, translation in the digital age, and translation for the global digital entertainment industry.
Current research includes projects on:
Translation and ecology
Translation and interpreting in natural disasters
Translation of e-books
Translation of childrens literature
Interpreting in Irish courts in the 19th Century
Machine translation and post-editing effort of enterprise and user-generated content
Interdisciplinary literary studies are an essential educational tool to prepare students to work in any field where critical thinking, strong writing skills and a sophisticated understanding of cultural difference and diversity are called for.
SALIS is home to a pioneering team, which is exploring the relations between literature and other areas of culture, including film, art and music. The study of literary and film-related topics opens onto a wide range of critical theories, issues of genres and artistic movements, approached according to interdisciplinary and intermedial principles.
The team is engaged in a variety of studies concerned with:
Ethics education through literature and film
Reception and reader response theory
Adapting literary works for film and television
Intermediality the interconnectedness of modern media
Childrens literature and graphic novels
Fairy-tale rewriting and myth-criticism
Imagology national and cultural stereotypes in literature
Ekphrasis verbal representations of visual representations
Geocriticism the analysis of space and place in literature
Citizenship Education across Cultures
Our young people are growing up in an era of political, social and economic crises often characterised by uncertainty and a breakdown in trust in democratic institutions and processes. Citizenship Education has a vital part to play in providing them with a deeper understanding and appreciation of their place in the world from local, national, European and global perspectives.
Specifically, research into Citizenship Education is concerned with issues such as multicultural education, intercultural curriculum, comparative citizenship education, nationalism, global citizenship and cosmopolitanism, migration, internationalisation of education, political education, and conflict and conflict resolution. Regions of particular interest include Ireland (North and South), and Central and Eastern Europe.
Current research projects are investigating:
Young people as innovators and Change-Makers in society
The impact of language learning and study abroad on perceptions of citizenship
Political and citizenship education in schools and in higher education settings
The internationalisation of higher education and the multicultural campus
The Capabilities Approach
Cosmopolitanism and Global Citizenship
The Northern Ireland peace process