Genre pedagogy in tertiary education in Spanish as a world language: appliability, interdisciplinarity and accountability.

Dr Margarita Vidal
Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile & The University of Sydney


Genre pedagogy has been extensively applied in primary and secondary education in diverse contexts around the world. Beyond the schooling years, work on teacher training programs, adult education (e.g. de Sylva Joyce, Hood & Rose, 2008) and higher education (Dreyfus, Humphrey, Mahboob & Martin, 2016) have been relevant applications of genre pedagogy in the Australian context. Interestingly, applications in adult and higher education emerged mostly as a respond to the literacy needs of learners who have English as a second or foreign language. In Latin America, on the other hand, applications of genre pedagogy in tertiary education have been mostly concerned with literacy in Spanish as first language (e.g. Moyano, 2018), in order to address the needs of a growing number of first-generation students in university. Overall, applications of genre pedagogy in tertiary education contexts have yet to reach the same centrality that implementations in primary and secondary education have enjoyed.

This talk describes a project that aimed to apply genre pedagogy within the curriculum of an undergraduate program in Spanish. The project focused on providing lecturers with pedagogic strategies to enhance students’ writing in the domain of clinical practice in Speech Therapy. This talk describes the general design and application of this project, considering its different stages, including overall results of this implementation. In addition, the talk aims to explore and discuss the diverse challenges that the application of genre pedagogy faces in tertiary contexts. The talk aims to offer a possible alternative for the appliability of genre pedagogy in diverse contexts, arguing that this implementation requires a certain degree of adaptation and flexibility to arising contextual issues and the specific institutional constrains, in order to open up the space for wider literacy interventions.


De Silva Joyce, H., Hood, S., & Rose, D. (2008). Investigating the impact of intensive reading pedagogy in adult literacy. NCVER.

Dreyfus, S. J., Humphrey, S., Mahboob, A., & Martin, J. R. (2016). Genre Pedagogy in Higher Education. The SLATE Project. London: Palgrave MacMillan.

Moyano, E.I. (2018). La enseñanza de la lectura y la escritura académicas mediante programas a lo largo del curriculum universitario: opción teórica, didáctica y de gestión. DELTA Documentação de Estudos em Lingüística Teórica e Aplicada, 34(1), 235-267

A love story of a translator with SFL

A/Prof. Mira Kim
University of New South Wales


This talk is a personal account of why I fell in love with Systemic Functional Linguistics (SFL) and how it has enhanced my confidence as a professional translator and translator educator and enabled me to make contributions as a researcher to the fields of translation studies and SFL. Starting with my language learning history and professional translator training, I will discuss how SFL has empowered me and challenged me at the same time at different stages of my career as an academic for two decades and how I plan to move forward from where I am.

Move systems: Realising knowledge exchanges

Dongbing Zhang (Mus)
University of Sydney


This talk is concerned with reasoning about classes of move from above in relation to exchange structure. The classes of move introduced in Martin (1992) – the SPEECH FUNCTION system – mainly follows Halliday’s (1985) speech functional interpretation of the English MOOD system (from below). Therein the move classes are also reasoned about from around in relation to how propositions are modalised and proposals modulated. Martin (1992) recognises the limitation of the speech functional analysis of interaction and proposes the system of NEGOTIATION at a rank above – exchange – to handle patterns in interaction which involve up to five moves in relation to Berry’s (1981a, b, c) work on exchange structure. However, no explicit attempt is made to relate the system and structure at exchange rank with the system at move rank. In other words, the classes of move are not reasoned about from above in relation to the types of exchange.

This talk thus adopts a top-down perspective on classes of move drawing mainly on conversational data from Khorchin Mongolian. It will focus in particular on the move classes that realise knowledge exchanges – the type of exchange that concerns the negotiation of information. The talk explicitly argues for the diversification of meaning-making resources between exchange rank and move rank. It consequently proposes the move system of INTERLOCUTOR POSITIONING. The system subsumes the speech functional conception of move commonly adopted in SFL descriptive work on languages other than English (e.g. Caffarel et al. 2004; Teruya et al. 2007). At the same time, the system provides more explanatory power that enables a move-by-move analysis of the dynamic positioning of interlocutors with respect to their knowledge of the information under negotiation.


Berry, Margaret. 1981a. Systemic linguistics and discourse analysis: A multi-layered approach to exchange structure. In Malcolm Coulthard & Martin Montgomery (eds.), Studies in discourse analysis, 120–145. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul.

Berry, Margaret. 1981b. Polarity, ellipticity and propositional development, their relevance to the well-formedness of an exchange (a discussion of Coulthard and Brazil’s classes of move). The Nottingham Linguistic Circular 10(1). 36–63.

Berry, Margaret. 1981c. Towards layers of exchange structure for directive exchanges. Network 2. 23–31.

Caffarel, Alice, J.R. Martin & Christian M.I.M. Matthiessen (eds.). 2004. Language typology: A functional perspective. Amsterdam/Philadelphia: John Benjamins.

Halliday, M.A.K. 1985. An introduction to functional grammar. London: Arnold.

Martin, J.R. 1992. English text: System and structure. Amsterdam/Philadelphia: John Benjamins.

Teruya, Kazuhiro, Ernest Akerejola, Thomas H Andersen, Alice Caffarel, Julia Lavid, Christian M.I.M. Matthiessen, Uwe Helm Petersen, Pattama Patpong & Flemming Smedegaard. 2007. Typology of MOOD: A text-based and system-based functional view. In Ruqaiya Hasan, Christian M.I.M. Matthiessen & Jonathan Webster (eds.), Continuing discourse on language: A functional perspective, vol. Volume 2, 859–920. London: Equinox Publishing.

Instantiating the Sydney School’s Teaching/Learning cycle in online curriculum design at Charles Sturt University

A/Prof. Elizabeth A. Thomson
Charles Sturt University


Over the past few years, CSU has invested significantly in degree/course design  (Thomson et al 2017; Thomson et al 2019) and improvements in online subject development and delivery (  As we have trialled and evaluated innovations in course design and online delivery, an issue which is motivating the Division of Learning and Teaching staff is embedding a pedagogical framework for online teaching. How we teach online is just as important as what we teach online. While CSU has a model for online learning underpinned by rigorous design, academic staff are still requesting educational designer support to realise the intent of the subject design in the online environment.  They want to produce lessons in the online space which are true to the design and assessment requirements that are both engaging and impactful.   To address this issue, a small team of academics from two disciplines along with Learning Design staff decided to apply the Teaching and Learning (T/L) cycle (Martin and Rose 2012) to the task of developing lessons for subjects designed for online.  This team is keen to demonstrate the utility of the T/L cycle beyond language and literacy contexts into other disciplines in Higher Education.  Toward that end, two academics: one from, the School of Communication and Creative Industries, tasked with the challenge of teaching Drawing entirely online; and one from the Graduate School of Policing and Security Studies, teaching the subject Contemporary Issues in Financial Crime in the Master of Fraud and Financial Crime along with Learning Design staff set out to apply the T/L cycle.  This presentation will demonstrate the application of the cycle to two new disciplinary contexts and present the process and the final online products.  The impact, success or otherwise, of this experiment will be reported through student evaluations which were collected as they experienced the online subjects.

SFL and language revitalisation: a new application for the theory

Anna Crane
University of Sydney

Anna Crane head shot

In the International Year of Indigenous Languages, this paper will ask what contribution we as SFL linguists are and could be making to the problem of language endangerment in Australia. As colonisation continues to unfold in this country, many of our Indigenous communities are striving to hold on to their languages, keep them vital or wake them up from generations of silence. Linguists have long been a part of this process, from documenting and describing languages to collaborating with speakers and learners to design educational resources and programs. Our role as language experts is sometimes crucial, often problematic or damaging but never theory-neutral. Contributions from the systemic functional linguistic community have been rare to date. This presentation will share some insights into what dimensions of SFL and genre theory are proving useful to supporting efforts to revitalise Gija, an endangered language from the Kimberley. In particular it will focus on how a stratified model of language in context affords some fresh approaches to looking beyond the clause at texts in this culture. It will also explore what challenges this application poses to us as researchers and practitioners using a theory explicitly concerned with language and social justice. Using the example of education efforts in Gija, I will ask how we might contribute to understanding these languages better and supporting their reinvigoration in transparent ways that engage with complexities and asymmetries of knowledge and power.

Connecting identities: Linguistic iconographies across contexts

Dr Ken Tann
University of Queensland


Cultural icons provide communities with an important way to identify and rally with one another. From the social constructionist perspective of SFL, such icons are not merely physical objects and historical persons, but a reservoir of culturally transmitted and persistent semiotic resources that members draw on, to articulate and share their meaningful experience of the world. The icons permeate both their collective imagination and social life, where they serve to socialize, demarcate, regulate, manage, challenge, and reconcile identities across varying contexts. The framework of iconography recently developed within SFL has been productively applied to explore identity construction in mass media (Tann, 2011, 2012, 2017), workplace practices (Thomson, 2014), poetry (Don, 2014), politics (Tann, 2016), education (Tilakaratna, 2016), social media (Wignell, Tan & O’Halloran, 2017; Zappavigna, 2018), and law (Zappavigna & Martin, 2018). This paper lays out the theoretical underpinnings of the framework, and compares how iconography is used strategically to achieve very different ends in different contexts.


Don, A. (2014) In song and poem: Australian attitudes. Paper presented at the Hong Kong University, April 2014.

Tann, K. (2011) An Iconography of Hope: Reconciling identities and axiologies. Paper presented at the Free Linguistics Conference. University of Sydney, Sydney, 8-9 October.

Tann, K. (2012) The language of identity discourse: Introducing a systemic functional framework for iconography. Linguistics and the Human Sciences 8(3): 361-91.

Tann, K. (2016) Context and meaning in the Sydney architecture of systemic functional linguistics. In Tom Bartlett & Gerard O’Grady (Eds.) The Routledge Handbook of Systemic Functional Linguistics. London: Routledge, pp. 438-56.

Tann, K. (2017) Nihonjinron and the context of culture. In Elizabeth A. Thomson, Motoki Sano & Helen de Silva Joyce (Eds.) Mapping Genres, Mapping Culture: Japanese Texts in Context. Amsterdam: John Benjamins, pp. 213-240.

Tilakaratna, N. (2016) Teaching the Nation: Recontextualized national identity in Sri Lankan English language textbooks. Eckert. Beitrage 2016/4.

Thomson, E.A. (2014) Battling with Words: A Study of Language, Diversity and Social Inclusion in the Australian Department of Defence. Canberra: Department of Defence.

Wignell, P., Tan, S. & O’Halloran, K. (2017) Under the shade of AK47s: A multimodal approach to violent extremist recruitment strategies for foreign fighters. Critical Studies on Terrorism 10(3): 429-52.

Zappavigna (2018) Searchable Talk: Hashtags and Social Media Metadiscourse. London: Bloomsbury.

Zappavigna, M. & Martin, J.R. (2018) Discourse and Diversionary Justice: An Analysis of Ceremonial Redress in Youth Justice Conferencing. London: Palgrave.

The linguistic correlates of patient-centredness in advanced cancer care: Looking out, looking in, and looking forward    

Dr Neda Karimi
Ingham Institute for Applied Medical Research

Neda Karimi

Patient-centred care is endorsed as one of the dimensions of a safe and high-quality health system (Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care, 2011). However, evidence indicates that end of life care in Australia is not always patient-centred (AIHW, 2017). There are numerous guidelines, models, and research studies that describe patient-centred communication at the end of life based on analyses of authentic data of clinician-patient communications. Despite being focussed on communication, a large proportion of this literature does not treat language as a phenomenon requiring any kind of theoretical framework. A scoping review of this literature was performed with the aim to assemble and categorise the resources this literature identifies as patient-centred around a theory of language. In other words, the scoping review provides a linguistic description of patient-centred care as suggested by this literature.

The review includes 36 papers found using Google Scholar, Scopus, and bibliographies. The results of the review are presented and discussed within the framework of a functional perspective towards language (Halliday & Webster, 2010; Halliday & Matthiessen, 2014). This outward approach arguably contributes to a process of trying to bring health communication and linguistics a little closer together. It provides a comprehensive summary of the resources that are considered patient-centred within the discipline of health communication, organises these resources around a theory of language, and identifies areas that need further development. The approach contributes to linguistics and, more specifically, systemic functional linguistics by consulting healthcare subject-matter experts’ views towards health communication, language and semantics and through incorporating analyses of a large body of data.


AIHW (2017). Deaths in Australian hospitals 2014–15. Retrieved from

Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care (2011), Patient-centred care: Improving quality and safety through partnerships with patients and consumers. Sydney: ACSQHC.

Halliday, M. A. K., & Matthiessen, C. M. I. M. (2014). Halliday’s introduction to functional grammar. London and New York: Routledge.

Halliday, M. A. K. & Webster, J. J. (Eds.). (2010). On Language and Linguistics, Volume 3 in the collected works of M.A.K. Halliday. London: Continuum. DIO:

Exploring intermodality in science animated videos

Yufei He
University of Sydney


Intermodality has long been a key issue in multimodal discourse studies. There are two different approaches to the study of intermodality: first, use resources within the systems of one semiosis (for example language) to explain intermodal relations (e.g.Martinec & Salway, 2005); second, map out the systems of the contributing semiosis and examine the integration of the options in the systems in a text (e.g. Painter, Martin, & Unsworth, 2012). Following the second approach, this study examines intermodality between animation and language (both written and spoken) in online science animated videos by first developing the systems of animation on both the expression plane and content plane. This study then offers two complementary perspective on intermodality in science animated videos: a bottom-up and a top-down perspective. A bottom-up perspective focuses on exploring the integration of the two semiosis on their expression plane, which shows that a synchrony between animation and the prosodic features of voiceover forms the basis of a coherent multimodal text. A top-down perspective examines the co-instantiation of field in the two semiosis, which reveals the potentials and constraints of animation in construing field knowledge. The two complementary perspectives also raise questions on the modeling of fields across different semiosis and the approach of comparing instantiation of resources in different semiosis across metafunctions and strata.


Martinec, R., & Salway, A. (2005). A System for Image Text Relations in New (and Old) Media. Visual Communication, 4(3), 337–371.

Painter, C., Martin, J. R., & Unsworth, L. (2012). Reading Visual Narratives. London: Equinox.