Professor Angela Creese

Professor Angela Creese

School of Education
Professor of Educational Linguistics
Deputy Director of MOSAIC, Centre for Research on Multilingualism

Contact details

School of Education
University of Birmingham
Edgbaston, Birmingham
B15 2TT, United Kingdom

Angela Creese is professor of educational linguistics in the School of Education.

Her research and teaching cross references anthropology, linguistics and education. She uses ethnography to investigate ideologies and interactions in educational and other social settings. Her research publications cover urban multilingualism, language ecology, multilingual ethnography, language education and social identities. She teaches research methods, sociolinguistics and educational linguistics.

Angela is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. She is also a recipient of the University of Pennsylvania Helen C Bailey Award (Alumni) for ‘outstanding contribution to educational linguistics’. She has served as an editor on the US based journal, Anthropology and Education Quarterly and since 2015 has been a British Association of Applied Linguistics representatative on the University Council of General and Applied Linguistics (UCGAL). In 2016, she won the 'Excellence in Doctoral Research Supervision' award in the College of Social Sciences, University of Birmingham.

She has published 8 books and numerous journal articles and book chapters. Since 2001 Angela has been awarded 9 Research Council grants.  She gives frequent keynote talks, nationally and internationally and provides consultancy for government and local government agencies. Angela has contributed to local and national media on issues of bilingualism and blogs along with her research team about these matters.

She is the director of a large national and international team which has received funding from AHRC to investigate how people communicate multilingually across diverse languages and cultures. Please view the Translation and Translanguaging website to find out more.

Listen to her latest podcast to learn more about Translanguaging


  • PhD (Educational Linguistics), University of Pennsylvania (distinction) 
  • MSc (TESOL), University of Pennsylvania. (distinction)
  • RSA Dip (TEFL)
  • BA (Hons) Drama (University of Leeds)


Postgraduate supervision

Angela is interested in supervising doctoral research students in the following areas:

  • Multilingualism in educational and other social settings
  • English as an additional language
  • Intercultural communication
  • Language policy and planning in education
  • Language education

For more information on research degrees, please visit the Postgraduate Research pages.

Current doctoral researchers

She currently supervises seven doctoral research students. Two students are ESRC funded, whilst two receive funds from the School of Edcuation.

Alicja Pyszka-Franceschini: Language Competence and Family Wellbeing - Psychological and Environmental Influences on Trilingual Language Acquisition and Language Learning, An Autoethnography.
Sarah Knee: Multilingual Literacy Development in Nepalese children growing up in the UK
Debbie De: Internationalisation in UK HE
Jing Huang: (full-time PhD, CSC funded) Language ideologies in and around Chinese complementary schools in the UK.
Louise Wheeler (full time, PhD, School of Education funded) Language ideologies and identities in the teaching and learning of English in a university in Kazakhstan
Nahoko Mulvey Exploring the programme of Japanese as a heritage language education in England 
Rosicler Reinboldt: A linguistic ethnographic study of the identity construction of women fleeing from domestic abuse

Visiting Doctoral Researchers

Alan Carneiro (University of Campinas (UNICAMP) (2012-13) (scholarship Bham/Nottingam)   
Sabina Vakser (University of Melbourne) (2012-13)
Suzanne Becker (University of Munich) (2013)
Lídia Gallego Balsà (University of Lleida, Catalonia, Spain)who visited 2012. Her topic was The learning of Catalan by International students in a Spanish University.
Olga Solovova (University of Coimba, Portugal) (2010) 
Joke Dewilde (Hedmark University, Norway) Teachers in multilingual classrooms: A case study of teacher collaboration. (2009) 
Laura Espelt Hernandez (University of Lleida, Catalonia, Spain) The school as a community of practice for the newcomers’ integration. (2009)

Graduated doctoral researchers

Soyoung Yun (PhD) Young Native English Speaker Teachers’ identity transition and their participation in Korean Government’s sponsored EPIK programme. Awarded 2016
Ildegrada Da Costa Cabral (PhD) From language policy to classroom practice: a study in two primary schools in Timor-Leste. Awarded 2015 
Danyal Farsani (PhD) Making multimodal mathematical meaning in multilingual classrooms. Awarded 2014
Amanda Simon (PhD) The social positioning of community schools: Towards a theoretical framework. Awarded 2013 
Lu Wei An Comparative Ethnographic Study of Teaching Mandarin in Three Different Educational Contexts.  Awarded 2013.
Elizabeth Chilton (PhD) The discursive construction of Family Literacy, Language and Numeracy: an exploration of practitioners' narratives-in-interaction. Awarded 2012
Dave Evans Does the construction of identity subject positions by male pupils in secondary school hinder their performance in Modern Foreign Languages (MFL) by comparison with girls?  Awarded 2011
Shin Chieh Hsieh (PhD Integrated Studies. (Im)politeness in email communication: how English and Chinese speakers negotiate meaningand develop intercultural (mis)undersandings. Awarded 2009 
Kholode Al-Obaidli (Phd) Women ESL teachers' perception perception about their roles and professional development needs in Qatar’s education for a new era. Awarded, 2009
Chin-Pin Chen (PhD) Classroom Language, Interaction and Cultures of Learning: An investigation into current English language education in Taiwan during the transition year from elementary to junior high school. Awarded 2008 
Fiona Copland (PhD) Discourse practices: process and power in the post-observation feedback event. Awarded 2008 
Barbara Major (Ed.D) The shaping of the learner identity of bilingual adults during curriculum study at an English Further Education college. Awarded 2007 
Roseanne Khalaf (PhD) Creative Writing: Identity and Change. A Case Study of American Univesity of Beirut Students in Post-War Lebanon. (external: Prof. Brian Street) Awarded 2000 


Since 2002, Angela has participated in nine research council funded projects and two government funded projects. 

Research Council Funding with collaborations

ESRC Research Seminar Series. 2014 - 2015. £28,566.
The Multilingual University: The Impact of Linguistic Diversity in Higher Education in English-dominant and English Medium Instructional Settings. (ES/M00175X/1)

AHRC Large Grant. 2014 – 2018. £1,973,527.
Translation and translanguaging: Investigating linguistic and cultural transformations in superdiverse wards in four UK cities (TLANG); (AH/L007096/1). Angela Creese (PI). With CIs Mike Baynham, Adrian Blackledge, Lisa Goodson, Li Wei, James Simpson, Caroline Tagg, Zhu Hua;  With Senrio Researchers Bharat Malkani, Mike Robinson, Janice Thompson, Kiran Trehan; With advisory consultants, Ian Grosvenor, Jenny Phillimore. In addition there are four Research Assistants, 2 DRs and one administrator (21 members) together with    seven non-academic partners and three 3 international partners. View the Translation and Translanguaging website.

AHRC/British Academy. 15 November 2014 - 23/ November 2014. £3000.
Being Human: a festival of the humanities. In collaboration with the Library of Birmingham.

AHRC/Humanities in the European Research Area. 2010 - 2012. €883,775.
Investigating discourses of inheritance and identity in four multilingual European settings(09-HERA-JRP-CD-FP-051). Adrian Blackledge (PI) with Jan Blommaert, Jens Normann Jorgensen, and Jarmo Lainio. Angela Creese; (senior researcher).

ESRC Research Seminar Series 2011 - 2012. £22,437.  (RES-451-26-0907). 
Diverse teachers for diverse learners. Dr. Geraldine Smyth (PI) University of Strathclyde; Dr. Rowena Arshad (CI); Dr. Ghazala Bhatti (CI); Professor Angela Creese (CI); Professor Ian Menter (CI).

ESRC Researcher Development Initiative 2010 - 2013. £99,000. (RES-046-25-0004). 
Researching multilingualism, multilingualism in research practice. With Deirdre Martin (PI), Adrian Blackledge, Angela Creese, Sheena Gardner, Marilyn Martin-Jones. Co-investigator. View the Researching multilingualism, multilingualism in research practice webpage

ESRC standard grant. 2006 - 2007. £208,000: (RES-000-23-1180)
Investigating multilingualism in complementary schools in four communities. Angela Creese (Principal applicant) with Adrian Blackledge, Vally Lytra, Peter Martin and Li Wei.  Rated outstanding in peer review. 

ESRC (TLRP) £721,384.62  (RES-139-25-0100-A).
Learning in and for Interagency Working.Professor Harry Daniels (PI). With Co-applicants Angela Creese (withdrawn), Jane Leadbetter, Deirdre Martin, Anne Edwards.

ESRC small grant. September 2002 – August 2003. £34,000: University of Leicester and University of Birmingham (R000223949).  
Complementary schools and the communities in Leicester. Peter Martin (PI) and Angela Creese (CI) Rated outstanding in peer review.

Find out more about this research in this video.

Learned Society, Professional Association Funding

BAAL Seminar. £750 (June, 2013) Conceptualizing multilingualism under globalization: membership claims, social categories and emblems of authenticity.  With UKLEF.

BAAL seminar, £500. Linguistic Ethnography. University of Leicester, 2000.

Government Funding

DfES £24,000. Principal investigator. Researching programme impact on teacher practice. 2007.

DfES £135,000: Principal investigator. Researching EAL teachers professional development needs. 2006.

Other activities

British Association of Applied Linguistics representative on University Council of General and Applied Linguistics (UCGAL). 2015 – present

Head of Department ( Language, Discourse and Society) 2008 – 2011

Chair of NALDIC publications 2008 - 2011


Authored Books:

Copland, F. and Creese, A. with Rock, F. and Shaw, S. (in press, January 2015) Linguistic Ethnography: Collecting, Analysing and Presenting Data. London, SAGE. Book details

Blackledge, A. and Creese, A. (2010). Multilingualism: A Critical Perspective. London, Continuum. Book details

Creese, A. (2005) Teacher collaboration and talk in multilingual classrooms.  Clevedon; Multilingual Matters. ISBN 1853598224. 

Edited Books:

Creese, A.and Blackledge, A (eds) (forthcoming, 2017) The Routledge Handbook of Language and Superdiversity

Blackledge, A. and Creese, A. (Eds.) (2014) Heteroglossia as Practice and Pedagogy. New York, Springer. Book details

Martin-Jones, M., Blackledge, A. and Creese, A. (Eds.) (2012) Routledge Handbook of Multilingualism.  London, Routledge. Book details

Leung, C. and Creese, A. (Eds.) (2010) English as an Additional Language: Approaches to Teaching Linguistic Minority Students. London, SAGE. Book details

Articles (selective)

Blackledge A. and Creese, A (in press/accepted) Ethnopoetics and ethnography: communication in a superdiverse city market. Journal of Sociolinguistics

Creese, A. and Blackledge, A. (2015) Translanguaging and identity in educational settings.  Annual Review of Applied Linguistics. 25, 20 - 35. Download the article (PDF)

Creese, A., and Blackledge, A. (2014) The Ideal ‘Native Speaker’ Teacher: Negotiating Authenticity and Legitimacy in the Language Classroom. Modern Foreign Language Journal. 98 (4) 937–951 (Open access article

Blackledge, A., Creese, A. and Takhi, J.K (2014) Voice, register, and social position. Multilingua. 33(5–6): 485–504

Creese A. and Blackledge, B. (2012) Voice and meaning-making in team ethnography. Anthropology & Education Quarterly, Vol. 43, Issue 3, pp. 306–324

Creese, A. and Blackledge.  A. (2011) A. Flexible and Separate Bilingualism in Complementary Schools.  Journal of Pragmatics 43, 1196–1208.

Creese, A. and Blackledge, A. (2010) Towards a sociolinguistics of superdiversity. Zeitschrift für Erziehungswissenschaft 13:549-572.

Creese, A. and Blackledge A. (2010) Translanguaging in the bilingual classroom: a pedagogy for learning and teaching.  Modern Language Journal. 94 (i) 103 – 115

Chapters in books

Copland, F. and Creese, A. (2016) Ethical Issues in Linguistic Ethnography: Balancing the Micro and the Macro. In Peter I. De Costa (Ed.) Ethics in Applied Linguistics Research. Language Research Narratives. New York: Routledge. pp. 161-178.

Blackledge, A. and Creese, A.  (2016) ‘A typical gentleman’: Metapragmatic stereotypes as systems of distinctions. In K. Arnaut, J. Blommaert, B. Rampton and M. Spotti (Eds). Language and Superdiversity.New York: Routledge. pp. 155-173.

Blackledge, A. and Creese, A. (2015) Reflexivity in linguistic ethnography.  In Julia Snell, Sara Shaw and Fiona Copland (Eds.) Linguistic Ethnography: Interdisciplinary Explorations.  Palgrave Macmillan. pp 266-285

Blackledge, A. and Creese, A.  and Takhi, J.K. (2015) Emblems of Identities in Four European Urban Settings. In Jacomine Nortier and Bente A. Svendsen  (editors) Multilingual Urban Sites: Structure, Activity, Ideology. Cambridge University Press. pp 67-82

Blackledge, A. and Creese, A., and Takhi, J.K. (2015) Communicative Repertoires in the Community Language Classroom: Resources for negotiating authenticity. In Multilingual Education: New Perspectives, edited by Jasone Cenoz and Durk Gorter. Cambridge University Press.

Conteh, J., Copland, F., and Creese, A. (2014) Multilingual teachers’ resources in three different contexts: empowering learning.  In Conteh, J. and Meier, G. (Eds) (2013) The Multilingual Turn in Languages Education: Opportunities and Challenges for Individuals and Societies. Series New Perspectives on Language and Education. Clevedon: Multilingual Matters.  pp. 158 – 178.

Creese, A. and Blackledge, A. (in press) Researching Bilingual and Multilingual Education Multilingually: A Linguistic Ethnography In Wayne E.Wright, Sovicheth Boun and Ofeli Garcia (eds.)    Handbook of Bilingual & Multilingual Education. Malden, MA and Oxford, UK: Wiley/Blackwell.

Blackledge, A., Creese, A. and Takhi, J.K. (2014) Discourses of aspiration and distinction in the local school economy. In Johann W. Unger, Michal Krzyzanowski, Ruth Wodak (Editors)  Multilingual Encounters in Europe's Institutional Spaces  London, Routledge. pp. 173 – 194

Blackledge, A. and Creese, A. (2014)  Heteroglossia in English Complementary Schools. In Gogolin, J. and J. Duarte (editors) Linguistic super-diversity in urban areas. Amsterdam, John Benjamins. pp. 123 - 142

Blackledge, A. and Creese, A. (2014) Heteroglossia as Practice and Pedagogy. In Blackledge, A. and Creese, A. (eds.) Heteroglossia as Practice and Pedagogy. New York, Springer. Pp. 1 - 20

Blackledge, A., Creese, A. and Takhi, J.K. (2013) Beyond multilingualism: Heteroglossia in practice. In Stephen May (ed.) The Multilingual Turn: Implications for SLA, TESOL and Bilingual Education. London/New York, Routledge. pp.191 – 215.

Blackledge, A. and Creese, A. and Takhi, J.K.  (2012) 'Language, Superdiversity and Education'. In I. de Saint-Georges and J.-J. Weber (eds.), Multilingualism and Multimodality: Current Challenges for Educational Studies. Sense Publishers.

Blackledge, A. and Creese, A. (2011) ‘Pride, profit and distinction: Negotiations across time and space’inA. Duchêne and M. Heller Language in Late Capitalism: Pride and profit. London, Routledge. pp 116 – 141

Creese, A. (2011) Making local practices globally relevant in researching multilingual education.  In Francis M. Hult and Kendall A. King (eds) Educational Linguistics in Practice.  Multilingual Matters: Bristol. pp. 41 – 55.

Creese. A. (2011)Bilingual pedagogy:  countering monolingual instructional assumptions.  In Sue Ellis and Elspeth McCartney, (Eds.)Insight and Impact:  Applied Linguistics and the Primary School. Cambridge University Press. pp.186 – 198.

Blackledge, A. and Creese, A. (2010) Opening up flexible spaces: ideology and practice in complementary schools.  In Lytra, V. and P. Martin (eds.) Sites of Multilingualism. Stoke-on-Trent, Trentham Books. pp. 3 – 18.

Creese, A. (2010) Educational Linguistics in Multilingual Classrooms. Francis Hult (Ed.) Directions and Prospects in Educational Linguistics:  Theoretical and Methodological issues. Springer. pp. 33 – 48

Creese, A. (2010) Two Teacher Classrooms, Personalised Learning and the Inclusion Paradigm in the UK: What’s in it for Learners of EAL? Menken, K. and García O. (Eds). Negotiating Language Policies in Schools: Educators as Policymakers. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates/Taylor & Francis Group/Routledge.  pp. 32 – 51.

Creese, A. (2010) Linguistic Ethnography.  In Evangelia Litosseliti, (Ed.) Research Methods in Linguistics. London: Continuum.  pp. 138 – 154

Creese, A. (2010). Teaching approaches in Two-Teacher Classrooms.  In Constant Leung and Angela Creese (eds) English as an Additional Language: Approaches to Teaching Linguistic Minority Students. pp. 58 – 74.

Creese. A. (2009) Bilingual teachers in two contexts of linguistic diversity.  In Bjørg-Karin Ringen and Ole Kolbjørn Kjørven (Eds) with Antoinette Gagné (Honoary editor). Teacher Diversity in  Diverse Schools – Challenges and Opportunities for Teacher Education. Vallset: Opplandske Bokforlag.  pp. 231 – 250.

Edited Working Paper Series (TLANG). Edited by Professor Angela Creese and Professor Adrian Blackledge

This series publishes research findings from the TLANG research project.  It focuses on communication practices in urban contexts and is interdisciplinary in its scope.