Linguistics research in the School looks into the nature of language as a manifestation of human cognition and social interaction. Most of our linguistic research falls within the theme of ‘Change in Language and Society’. The changes we investigate can take place over very long time periods (‘Deep Time’), or within and between generations of speakers over the human life span (‘Shallow Time’), or as language use unfolds in particular discourse and interactional contexts (‘in real time’).

Linguists at UQ are engaged in projects that investigate theoretical questions about the nature of language through investigating one language, comparing across languages, or examining languages in contact with each other.

Much of our research examines language structure and use in Australian contexts from the description of Australian First Nations languages to Australian English, to the heritage languages of migrants to Australia.

The School makes a strong contribution to raising awareness, both within Indigenous communities and among the Australian public in general, of the significance of Australian Indigenous Languages, including new languages, and to the documentation, learning and teaching of these languages. Projects are mostly conducted in collaboration with particular language communities.

Featured projects Duration
Something old, something new: Indigenous languages since colonization
ARC Future Fellowship
Saibai Island Language and Cultural Knowledge Project
Australian Research Council
Lexical splits: a novel perspective on the structure of words (Arts & Humanities Research Council Grant administered by Uni of Surrey)
Arts & Humanities Research Council Grant administered by Uni of Surrey
Humor in Taiwan
Chiang Ching-Kuo Foundation for International Scholarly Exchange
Talking knowledge, doing learning: the early years
ARC Discovery Projects
High-definition carbon-dating of linguistic pasts
ARC Discovery Early Career Researcher Award
Trilingual language contact in an Indigenous community
ARC Discovery Projects
Out of the Mouthes of Babes
ARC Discovery Early Career Researcher Award