Before pursuing my PhD at the University of Birmingham in 2000, I lived and worked in Singapore. I graduated in 2005 and moved back to Singapore for a brief period. In 2007, I moved to Birmingham to take up my current post as lecturer. I was initially in the English for International Students Unit and am currently in the Department of English.
I have a BA in English Language and Literature from the National University of Singapore, an MA in Applied Linguistics from the University of Sheffield and a PhD in English Language from the University of Birmingham. I also have a Certificate in Teaching English as a Second Language from the Royal Society of Arts.
Prior to my time at Birmingham, I taught at the National University of Singapore, the National Institute of Education, Singapore, and the Open University (Singapore). Primarily, my teaching was in the field of English for academic and professional purposes and teaching English as a foreign/second language. I also taught introductory linguistics, written discourse analysis and sociolinguistics at undergraduate level.
I currently teach undergraduates in the Department of English, postgraduates in English Studies and short teacher training courses offered by the Department of English.
I am interested in supervising MA and PhD students in any of the following fields:
English for academic purposes, particularly the challenges associated with academic writing.
Teaching English as a second/foreign language.
The primary focus of my research is on academic discourse and its influence on writer identity. My other research interests include English for academic purposes, particularly, academic writing, and second language learning and teaching.
I am currently Director of the Centre for Advanced Research in English. I am a member of BAAL and BALEAP and a fellow of the Higher Education Academy. I am a regular reviewer for the Journal of English for Academic Purposes, the Asian English Language Journal and on the Staff Review Panel for the Birmingham Journal of Language and Linguistics.I have reviewed manuscripts for Palgrave McMillan and Wiley-Blackwell and served as an external examiner for PhD theses from the University of Barcelona and the National University of Singapore.
(2012) Identity without the ‘I’: A study of citation sequences and identity in literature review sections of dissertations. In R. Tang (ed) Academic writing in a second or foreign language: issues and challenges facing ESL/EFL academic writers in higher education contexts. London: Continuum.
(2010)The influence of revision on first person pronoun use in thesis writing. Writing & Pedagogy 1(2). Special Topic: Postgraduate Writing.
(2009) Using the revision process to help international students understand the linguistic construction of the academic identity. In M. Charles, D. Pecorari & S. Hunston (eds) Academic Writing: At the Interface of Corpus and Discourse (pp. 272-290). London: Continuum.
(2007) Meeting the challenge of developing an academic identity: a textual approach. In P Teo & C Ho (eds) Discourse in the Modern World, P Teo & C Ho (editors), McGrawHill Education (Asia): Singapore.
(2005) The Writing Process and Writer Identity: investigating the influence of revision on textual and linguistic features of writer identity in dissertations. Unpublished PhD thesis, University of Birmingham, Birmingham, United Kingdom.
(1999) The 'I' in identity: Exploring writer identity in student academic writing through the first person pronoun, in English for Specific Purposes, Vol. 18(1999): S23-S39. [with Ramona Tang]