Robert Holland BA MA RSA Dip TEFLA

Department of English Language and Linguistics
Lecturer in Applied Linguistics

Contact details

Frankland Building
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

I am a lecturer in Applied Linguistics in English Language Studies at the University of Birmingham. I have a background in English Language teaching, teacher-training and language education project management.


  • BA European Studies (French & Politics)
  • MA Applied Linguistics with TEFL


I taught English and French as a volunteer in Sudanese schools in Darfur and Kordofan in the early 1980s. After a brief period as a market researcher back in my native London, I went to Indonesia, where I lived and worked for some ten years as an EFL teacher and course designer and then as coordinator of a British aid–funded language education development project. I have been working at the University of Birmingham since 1994.


Sociolinguistics; Discourse Analysis; Intercultural Communication; English as a ‘Global Language’; Language Teaching Methodology; Language Syllabus Design.

Postgraduate supervision

I am interested in supervising MA and MPhil research in the following areas:

media discourse
intercultural communication
the role and status of English as an international language
language and ‘globalisation’
concepts of culture and ideology in political and news discourse
‘culture’ as a factor in L2 learning / teaching / course design

Find out more - our PhD English Language and Applied Linguistics  page has information about doctoral research at the University of Birmingham.


My main areas of interest are discourse and ideology, media discourse, and language and intercultural communication. I am particularly interested by developments in British discourse relating to the role of religion in public life.

Other activities

Convenor, MA programmes in:

  • Applied Linguistics
  • Applied Corpus Linguistics
  • Critical Discourse, Culture & Communication
  • English Language & Applied Linguistics

Head of Postgraduate Studies (Taught), 2013 - present


Recent publications


Holland, R 2006, '(De-)Rationalizing the irrational: discourse as culture/ideology', Critical Discourse Studies, vol. 3, no. 1, pp. 37-59.

Holland, R 2006, 'Language(s0 in the global news. Translation, audience design and discourse (mis)representation', Target, vol. 18, no. 2, pp. 229-259.

Holland, R 2002, ''Globospeak? Questioning Text on the Role of English as a Global Language', Language and Intercultural Communication, vol. 2, no. 1, pp. 5-24.

Guilford, TC, Gagliardo, A, Chappell, J, Bonadonna, F, Burt, T & Holland, R 1998, 'Homing pigeons use olfactory cues for navigation in England', Journal of Experimental Biology, vol. 201, no. 6, pp. 895-900.


Holland, R, Kemble, I, O'Sullivan, C & Sastradipradja, LH 2006, 'Seno Gumira Ajidarma's Jazz, Perfume and the Incident: lessons in English as a global language - or - How do you translate English into English?', Paper presented at Translation and Creativity: 5th Portsmouth Translation Conference, Portsmouth, 1/01/06 pp. 127-144.

View all publications in research portal