Dr Julie Bray
Head of Language Centre
I have over 30 years’ experience in language education, 20 of which specifically relate to English for Academic Purposes. Prior to joining the university, I was the Academic Manager for the British Council ELTC in Prague and have also worked in Spain, Poland and the UK. In 2000 I joined the Language Centre and became the Head in 2007. The primary goal of the Centre is to support international students and help develop the language and skills for successful academic study, and to provide guidance in making the ‘cultural shift’ when studying in a new educational setting. We work with academics across the institution to understand the linguistic, communicative and cognitive demands placed on students in different disciplines in order to design targeted support.
I have recently completed my PhD in which I explored the relationship between language use, knowledge practices and disciplinary cultures. The research challenges the sector held practice of viewing language as peripheral to content teaching and so as something ‘done’ by EAP specialists. The findings demonstrated how language is not a transparent tool for communication and that knowledge practices should largely be viewed as acts of specialist meaning-making and communication.
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