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  • Writer's pictureMultilingualSydney

Visual methodologies in multilingualism research

Updated: Sep 27, 2019

Date: 8 Oct, 2019

Time: 1 - 4 pm

NEW Venue: Macquarie University,

9 Wally's Walk, Rm 133.

In an age of multiple methods, it is always a good idea to add another methodological string to your bow! With the growing popularity of the mixed method research paradigm, researchers are expected to know and adopt a full suite of data collection and analytical methodologies. This practical workshop introduces four visual methodologies for multilingualism research.


Silvia Melo Pfeifer (Hamburg University), Jacqueline D'Warte (Western Sydney), Alice Chik (Macquarie University) and Phil Benson (Macquarie University).

Registration: Eventbrite (link)

Visual narratives in teacher education: A path to foreign language teachers’ professional development

Silvia Melo-Pfeifer, Hamburg University

In this talk I will present current research using visual narratives to uncover foreign language teachers’ professional development, focusing on student-teachers’ representations of teaching, learning and multilingualism. Tasks developed at the University of Hamburg will be proposed to the audience, in order to give the discussion an empirical ground.

Silvia Melo-Pfeifer is currently Associate Professor at the Faculty of Education in the University of Hamburg. Among her research interests are pluralistic approaches to foreign language education, visual methods in foreign language teaching, teacher education and research, and plurilingual conversation analysis.

Languages of Sydney: Uncovering the invisible in Initial Teacher Education

Alice Chik, Macquarie University

This session will introduce the use of language portraits for understanding and empowering diversity. A typical Sydney classroom has 54.5% of its students coming from a language background other than English. The Australian classrooms are quickly becoming culturally and linguistically more diverse, and we will use language portraits to explore the linguistic diversity in our classrooms.

Alice Chik is Senior Lecturer in the Department of Educational Studies. Her research interests include language learning in informal and digital contexts, and multilingualism as urban diversities. She recently co-authored ‘Languages of Sydney: The people and the passion’ (Chik, Markose & Alperstein, 2018) and co-edited ‘Multilingual Sydney’ (Chik, Benson & Moloney, 2019).

Language Mapping: Exploring in and out of school language and literacy practices with teachers and young people in multilingual classrooms

Jacqueline D’Warte, Western Sydney University

This session will share the visual methodology of language mapping (D’warte, 2013) a methodology that involves young people in creating visual representations of their individual language and literacy practices and experiences. Research data from Western Sydney schools will be used to discuss the analytical and pedagogical work this method generated with teachers and students in diverse classrooms.

Dr Jacqueline D’warte is a Senior Lecturer in English language and literacy curriculum and pedagogy, in the School of Education at Western Sydney University and a Senior Researcher in the Centre for Educational research. Dr D’warte’s research explores connections between language, identity and learning and how these influence classroom practice and educational equity in culturally and linguistically diverse educational settings.

Linguistic Landscapes

Phil Benson, Macquarie University

Is every sign you see in Sydney written in English. If not what other languages are used? If you ask these questions and observe the languages you see as you walk around the city, you have already got started on linguistic landscape research. This session will show how to do linguistic landscape research more systematically and discuss its significance for the study of multilingualism in urban life.

Phil Benson is a professor in the Macquarie University Linguistics Department and Director of the Faculty of Human Sciences Mulitilingualism Research Centre. His research interests are centred on multilingualism in urban environments and its implications for learning English and community languages beyond the language classroom.

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