Posted by & filed under Member Publications.

The (randomly) selected focus publication for September/October 2015 is:

Sercombe, P.G. & Young, T.J. (2015). Student Adjustment: Diversity and Uniformity of Experience. In Fabricius A.H. and Presisler,B. (Eds.), Transcultural Interaction and Linguistic Diversity in Higher Education (pp. 34-55). Basingstoke: Palgrave MacMillan.

Abstract: Internationalisation of higher education has become a global phenomenon, as reflected by the fact that around 4 million people are now engaged in study outside their country of origin, a fourfold increase since 1999 (OECD, 2011). The UK is the largest single destination in Europe, and the second largest worldwide after the United States . Among full-time ‘taught’ postgraduates (as opposed to those studying for research degrees) in the UK, 66% are non-UK nationals (HESA 2010).For countries in net receipt of international students, higher education has come to be seen as central to economic development (Wright and Rabo 2010); however, ‘universities are no longer just servicing the economy: now educating international students is itself a lucrative trade’ (ibid: 3). In the UK, international postgraduate students generate significant income for higher education institutions (HEIs) and it is thus in the interests of HEIs to support such students, facilitate their retention and to attract new postgraduates. Until recently, there had been relatively little research which specifically focused on international students’ (ISs) transition to postgraduate study overseas, although there are bodies of research surrounding educational transitions, e.g. from school to tertiary level education; and from education to work (Tobbell and O’Donnell 2013). We are interested in ISs’ subjective views and reflections on their experiences. In this chapter, we report on sentiments expressed by ISs managing a formal education overseas sojourn. Our specific aim was to describe perceptions and provide insights into reports of those working towards taught a Master’s degree IN Cross Cultural communication, over the period of an academic year (equivalent to a calendar year), at a single HEI in the UK.

Posted by & filed under Job Postings.

The Department of Communication invites applications for a tenure-track faculty position in the area of interpersonal and/or intergroup communication. The search is at the level of Assistant Professor, with an anticipated start date of July 1, 2016. Candidates should be ABD (with a degree expected by June 2016) or have a Ph.D. preferably in communication, have a strong social science background, and a record of publishing innovative scientific research. Applicants with research and teaching expertise in traditional or new areas of interpersonal/intergroup communication are encouraged to apply.

Applicants should submit a cover letter highlighting qualifications, a curriculum vitae, evidence of teaching effectiveness, three letters of recommendation, and three publications to the appropriate sections of the job search website: https://recruit.ap.ucsb.edu/apply/JPF00548. Questions should be directed to the Search Committee Chair, Dr. Howie Giles, at giles@comm.ucsb.edu or at 805-893-2055. This position will remain open until filled. For primary consideration all application materials, including reference letters, must be received by October 30, 2015.

The Department is especially interested in candidates who can contribute to the diversity and excellence of the academic community through research, teaching and service. The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.

Posted by & filed under Member Publications.

The (randomly selected) focus publication for August 2015 is:

McKenzie, R.M. (2015). The sociolinguistics of variety identification and categorisation: Free classification of varieties of spoken English amongst non-linguist listeners. Language Awareness, 24(2), 150-168. Doi: 10.1080/09658416.2014.998232 

Abstract: In addition to the examination of non-linguists’ evaluations of different speech varieties, in recent years, sociolinguists and sociophoneticians have afforded greater attention towards the ways in which naïve listeners’ perceive, process and encode spoken language variation, including the identification of language varieties as regionally or socially localised forms. The present study attempts to extend understanding of non-linguists’ perceptions of linguistic diversity through the investigation of how accurately and consistently UK-born students, resident in the north-east of England, can identify the speaker place of origin of six forms of L1 and L2 English. The results demonstrate that whilst the process of encoding indexical properties to and categorisations of speech stimulus as belonging to a specific language variety is complex, there is a clear tendency amongst informants to initially identify the speech as either native or non-native, most especially through the perception of specific segmental and non-segmental phonological features, before attempting more fine-grained classifications. The findings also point to the recognition of speaker place of origin at different levels of awareness, above and below the level of individual consciousness.

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Our focus publication for July 2015 is:

Harwood, J., & Vincze, L. (2015). Ethnolinguistic identity, vitality, and gratifications for television use in a bilingual media environment. Journal of Social Issues, 71, 73-89.

ABSTRACT: This article tests a model predicting minority language television consumption. We examine how four media gratifications (diversion, ethnolinguistic identity, surveillance, parasocial companionship) mediate the relationship between ethnolinguistic identification and choice of ingroup language television viewing. The study is performed among (minority) Hungarian speakers in Transylvania, Romania. Self-report questionnaire data from 401 Hungarian-speaking high school students in Csíkszereda/Miercurea Ciuc (a majority Hungarian locale) and Brassó/Brașov (a minority Hungarian locale) allowed us to compare high and low local vitality conditions. Analysis indicates that diversion (entertainment) and ethnolinguistic identity gratifications for watching ingroup language television are the strongest mediators of the influence of identification on ingroup language television use. We examined four moderators of these indirect effects (objective vitality, subjective vitality, intergroup contact, and intragroup contact). The moderators revealed a number of rather complex effects which are discussed with regard to the local intergroup context and broader issues of media and intergroup relations.