The field of Applied Linguistics and Discourse Studies is Carleton’s unique approach to the study of language, combining several research areas that have previously had separate academic traditions. Carleton’s program in ALDS is unique in allowing students to combine these areas into a single program.

  • 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 graduates in Applied Linguistics and Discourse Studies are doing with their degrees

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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
Janna FoxRandall GessEva KartchavaTrudy O’Brien, Kristin SnoddonDavid Wood
Language testing and assessment Janna Fox
Languages for Academic/Specific Purposes Janna FoxGuillaume GentilMichael RodgersTrudy O’Brien
Second language acquisition Randall GessEva KartchavaTrudy O’Brien, Michael RodgersDavid Wood
Second language pronunciation Randall Gess
Formulaic language and phraseology David Wood
Writing in academic, professional, and community contexts Natasha ArtemevaRichard DarvilleGuillaume GentilJaffer SheyholislamiGraham Smart
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 ArtemevaRichard DarvilleGuillaume GentilMarie-Odile JunkerTrudy O’BrienJaffer SheyholislamiGraham SmartKristin Snoddon
Language and identity Erik AnonbyGuillaume GentilJaffer SheyholislamiKristin Snoddon
Language policy and language preservation Erik AnonbyRichard DarvilleMarie-Odile JunkerJaffer SheyholislamiKristin Snoddon
Language documentation and language mapping Erik AnonbyMarie-Odile Junker

 Note: Starting September 2010, all LALS course codes became either ALDS (Applied Linguistics and Discourse Studies) or LING (Linguistics).  Click here to view all course changes effective Fall 2010.