December 2012 e-bulletin - LLAS Centre for languages, linguistics and area studies

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News Bulletin

Dear colleague,  

Welcome to the LLAS e-bulletin for December 2012. Click here to see this email on the LLAS website.

Message from the Director 

As we sail into the lee of Christmas, most of us are looking forward to a break and some time out. It continues to be a difficult time for languages with a great deal of uncertainty about the future and a lot of pressures on teaching, research, management/admin, outreach, enterprise and all of the other activities we undertake. But the uncertainty has also brought opportunities, even if grasping them takes time and energy to think up new ideas, make business cases and submit bids.

In fact this term has shone a good deal of public attention on languages, with continued media coverage of major projects, like Language Rich Europe, and a concerted week of language-related events organized by the British Academy. There have also been significant government consultations on languages in schools and major implications flowing from proposed changes in school education and teacher training more broadly. There can be no doubting the increased concern nationally, and this is also echoed across Europe where many countries are being shaken in their complacency and beginning to worry about their capacity in languages.

One area of languages that continues to hold out hope for innovation is online education. This is an area in which languages have traditionally been very active. Technological changes are constantly challenging old approaches and offering new possibilities. LLAS at Southampton is about to host its 8th annual e-learning symposium on 24-25 January and already it is clear that the event will be bigger than ever this year. We have received twice as many session proposals as in previous years, and demand for places is correspondingly high. Readers thinking of attending should note that the early bird rate is closing on 20 Dec. It may be a reflection of where language learning is going.

Mike Kelly (follow Mike on Twitter at @ProfMikeKelly)
Director, LLAS Centre for languages, linguistics and area studies

This month's e-bulletin in brief

  • In the news
  • LLAS Why study languages? calendar FREE downloads - December 2012
  • LLAS events : Our events programme in full can be found at  
    IN FOCUS :
    E-learning symposium 2013, 24-25 January 2012, University of Southampton - EARLY BIRD RATE ENDING SOON!!

In the news

LLAS E-learning symposium 2013 - EARLY BIRD RATE ENDING SOON!!
The 8th annual e-learning symposium will take place on 24 and 25 January at the University of Southampton. Take advantage of our early bird rate and register at You can also download the e-symposium poster here.

Babel - The Language magazine 
Babel is a new quarterly print magazine, covering a wide range of topics in linguistics. It brings together cutting-edge research in language studies, presented in a fun and digestible form. With Prof. David Crystal as Linguistic Consultant, and a spirited team of global language academics behind it, Babel promises to broaden your linguistic horizons. Visit the
Babel website to download a PDF of the free sample issue, or contact us to receive your free copy in the post.



Establishment of British Association for Islamic Studies
We are pleased to announce that planning is underway for the formal establishment of a British Association for Islamic Studies (BRAIS), following on from the work of the Islamic Studies Network. The association will be a learned society and professional organisation focused on enhancing research and teaching about Islam and Muslim cultures and societies in UK higher education. It will provide a forum for academic exchange for scholars with an interest in any aspect of Islam and the Muslim world (including non-Muslim majority societies), and will act as an umbrella organisation for members working in a wide range of disciplines and geographical interest areas. The association is planning an inaugural conference in Edinburgh on 5-6 September 2013. For further information please visit or contact

Get our LanguageBox search widget for your website! 
We have developed an embeddable search box for the LanguageBox which you can add to your website. Get in contact with us and we can tell you how to put it on your website. See an example at:

Order your free copy of the LLAS magazine Liaison!
An online copy is available to view here. To order your FREE hard copy, just email us at . This issue includes articles on the year abroad, social media, OERs and a piece by Lid King, the Chair of Speak to the Future, the campaign for languages.


Plenary meeting of the University Council of Modern Languages (UCML)
Friday 18 January 2013 - Birkbeck College, London 
This meeting is open to all colleagues in institutions which are members of UCML.  As well as updates on current issues in languages in higher education there will also be presentations and discussions on the issue of open access publishing.  For more information, go to :

LLAS blog 

Islamic Studies Network project draws to a close - Dr Lisa Bernasek, LLAS

Since 2009 staff at LLAS have been working on the Islamic Studies Network, a project funded by HEFCE and overseen by the Higher Education Academy. The Network was established following on from a series of consultation meetings and research commissioned by HEFCE on Islamic Studies in Higher Education, including two reports by LLAS staff and colleagues at the then-Subject Centre for Philosophical and Religious Studies. The Network brought together academics working in Islamic Studies from a wide range of disciplines, and provided practice-sharing and networking opportunities through events, project grants and publications. A full range of resources developed through the project, including teaching materials, research reports, event reports, case studies and model module outlines are available on the Network website.

Click here for the full post

 LLAS Why study languages? calendar 

FREE calendar download: This calendar was produced by LLAS Centre for languages, linguistics and area studies. It was created with help from teachers working on the JISC-funded Community Cafe project. In December, Welsh is featured. Quiz questions and answers are also included. 
This is the last of a 16-month series lasting until Dec 2012.
 Please visit :
You can find all months so far at
Look out for another language next month from our new 2013 calendar!

Forthcoming events in the LLAS community

January 2013

IN FOCUS: E-learning Symposium 2013
24 - 25 January, 2013 - University of Southampton

This year the e-learning symposium is bigger than ever! 30 talks, 4 interactive workshops, students' posters, a publishers' exhibition and more!

Keynotes speakers include:
Prof Mike Neary, Dean of Teaching and Learning at the University of Lincoln
Prof Allison Littlejohn, Chair of Learning Technology, Glasgow Caledonian University
Prof Gráinne Conole, Professor of Learning Innovation, University of Leicester
Nik Peachey, Associate Trainer, Bell Educational Services


March 2013

Teaching in higher education through the medium of English
18 - 22 March, 2013 - University of Southampton

April 2013

Residence Abroad, Social Networks and Second Language Learning
11 April - 12 April, 2013 - University of Southampton

June 2013

Teaching in higher education through the medium of English
10 - 14 June, 2013 - University of Southampton

Remember that you can apply for the HEA UK travel fund to cover travel, subsistence or conference fees for these events. To find out more, visit the
HEA website or download the application form here

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We would be grateful if you would forward this bulletin to colleagues and relevant mailing lists. Please do not hesitate to contact LLAS if you have any queries regarding this bulletin.

LLAS Centre for languages, linguistics and area studies 
University of Southampton | Avenue Campus | Southampton | SO17 1BJ 
p: +44 (0) 23 8059 4814 | f: +44 (0) 23 8059 4815 |


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