Swansea University linguistics expert wins prestigious grant funding award

A Swansea University linguistics expert, teacher and researcher has won a prestigious International Scholarship Scheme award to study Chinese language teaching.

Senior Lecturer, Dr Chris Chi-Chiang Shei, has been selected by the Higher Education Academy to research good practice in Chinese language teaching and to bring his first-hand results and teaching materials back to the UK.

During his three month stay Chris is planning to write a book on Chinese linguistics, a journal article and a conference paper. He will also attend classes and seminars and practical teaching sessions during his stay at his chosen host institution which is the National Kaohsiung Normal University, Taiwan.

Dr Chris Chi-Cheng Shei

Dr Chris Shei has an MA degree in linguistics (National Chengchi University), an MPhil in English and applied linguistics (University of Cambridge), a PhD in TESOL (National Taiwan Normal University) and a second PhD in informatics (University of Edinburgh). He has worked with Swansea University since 2003 first as a lecturer and then a senior lecturer from 2007. He teaches and supervises in applied linguistics and translation studies.

Chris is best known in the applied linguistics research circle for the five articles he published with the journal of Computer Assisted Language Learning, especially his 2008 work entitled “Discovering the hidden treasure on the Internet: using Google to uncover the veil of phraseology”, which has become a frequently cited work for ongoing research on the topic of using the Web as corpus.

Chris is also a renowned translator of academic books and has contributed to seven books translated from English to Chinese to be used as textbooks in the field of Educational Studies in Taiwan. He has also published a ground-breaking book entitled “Translation and the Web: Theory, Practice, and Norm” (translated from the Chinese title) at the end of 2010 which is the first of its kind in Taiwan. Chris is currently working on a book on Chinese linguistics to be published by a UK publisher to the worldwide markets in 2013.

Chris is currently forming a research team with Japan-based scholars focusing on the use of web-based machine translation (e.g. Google Translate) and second language writing. The team will be looking at how Japanese students use Google Translate in their English composition and how to make machine translation useful to second language learners. Due to his extensive background in theory and practice of language teaching, Chris is not only a language teacher and a language teacher trainer but also a researcher on second language teaching and learning.

The Higher Education Academy’s annual funding award programme supports the development of learning and teaching across UK higher education.

The awards build on the HEA’s work in one or more of its seven key thematic areas of: assessment; education for sustainable development; employability; internationalisation; flexible learning; retention and success; and reward and recognition of teaching. Their outcomes will also help to build an evidence base for learning and teaching in these areas.

The recipients of the 2012 International Scholarship Scheme will undertake specific investigations outside of the UK and deliver specific outcomes for dissemination within the UK sector at the end of the scholarship. The list of award winners can be found at http://www.heacademy.ac.uk/international-scholars-2012