The interdisciplinary combination of Applied Linguistics and Discourse Studies is Carleton’s unique approach to the study of language, bringing together several research areas that have previously had separate academic traditions.

  • Applied Linguistics: in contrast to formal Linguistics with its focus on the structure of language, Applied Linguistics emphasizes language as a system of communication and a form of social action. Its areas of investigation include how languages are assessed, learned and taught.
  • Discourse Studies: this field also emphasizes language as a tool for communication and action in professional and social contexts. Discourse Studies takes a “multi-modal” approach, examining how written, spoken and visual modes of communication interact in workplace and academic settings, as well as in the media and social networking.

Graduates with degrees in Applied Linguistics and Discourse Studies are well-placed – not simply because of their degrees but because of their training – to take jobs in language education, in government and business, in NGOs, and emerging technologies, both in Canada and abroad.

See what these grads are doing with their degrees

Alumni Profiles

Research Areas in Applied Linguistics and Discourse Studies

Our faculty members are active in the research of the following areas:

Area of Research
Faculty Member
Second and foreign language teaching (including TESL)
Curriculum and methodology in second and foreign language teaching
Randall GessEva KartchavaGeoffrey G. Pinchbeck, Brian Strong, David Wood
Language testing and assessment Angel Arias
Languages for Academic/Specific Purposes Angel Arias, Guillaume GentilGeoffrey G. PinchbeckMichael Rodgers 
Second language acquisition Randall GessEva KartchavaGeoffrey G. PinchbeckMichael RodgersBrian StrongDavid Wood
Second language pronunciation Randall Gess
Formulaic language and phraseology Brian Strong, David Wood
Writing in academic, professional, and community contexts Natasha ArtemevaRichard DarvilleGuillaume GentilGeoffrey G. PinchbeckJaffer SheyholislamiGraham Smart, Rachelle Vessey
Second language writing and biliteracy Guillaume Gentil
Discourse analysis

  • Written, spoken and multimodal text
  • Cross-cultural/intercultural
  • Critical discourse analysis
  • Computer-assisted/corpus-based
  • Genre analysis
  • Digital media
Natasha ArtemevaChris Cox, Guillaume GentilMarie-Odile JunkerJaffer SheyholislamiGraham Smart, Rachelle Vessey
Language and identity Erik AnonbyChris CoxGuillaume GentilJaffer Sheyholislami, Rachelle Vessey
Language policy and language preservation Erik AnonbyChris Cox, Marie-Odile JunkerJaffer Sheyholislami, Rachelle Vessey
Language documentation and language mapping Erik Anonby, Chris CoxMarie-Odile Junker