Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Postgraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2019-2020 (archived)

Module LANG40915: GLOBAL ENGLISHES: Policy and Power

Department: English Language Centre

LANG40915: GLOBAL ENGLISHES: Policy and Power

Type Open Level 4 Credits 15 Availability Available in 2019/20 Module Cap
Tied to Q3K207
Tied to Q3K807


  • None


  • None

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • None


  • the aim of this modules is:
  • to give students a broader understanding of the historical, political and social contexts that have given rise to the spread of English as a Lingua Franca (ELF) and consider these in terms of 'linguistic imperialism' and broader theories of power
  • to ask students to critically engage with a range of theoretical approaches that model ELF (eg Kachru, Pennycook)
  • have critical understanding of the concepts of Global Englishes and World Englishes; how they evolved and the key issues and controversies that have emerged
  • how language policy and language use are related to wider issues of politics and power
  • how English language teaching is impacted by issues of power and politics and what this might mean for the classroom
  • to engage critically with notion of the English as a Lingua Franca core (Jenkins 1996) and consider the impacts for teaching


  • the module begins with an overview of the main theories that seek to explain the political, social and pedagogical impact of the spread of English as a world language and the emergence of English as a Lingua Franca (ELF)
  • we then consider how the presence of English and 'World Englishes' has impacted education systems in a number of contexts including the impact of African American Vernacular (AAVE) in the USA
  • we will ask students to consider how these wider issues impact their own context and their identity as teachers and in particular, we will problematize the 'native' and 'non-native' speaker dichotomy

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • to understand the core theories and models related to Global Englishes and World Englishes. This includes understanding the nature of and relationship between (for example); pidgins and creoles, nativised varieties and ELF
  • be able to use key concepts such as linguistic imperialism and language as a local practice to evaluate language planning and policy approaches
  • to understand and critique the concept of ELF and the ELF core
Subject-specific Skills:
Key Skills:
  • ability to engage with and evaluate theories and concepts drawn from linguistics and the social sciences
  • ability to critically apply theories to case studies and students' own experiences of teaching and learning

Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

  • the module will be taught through interactive lectures that present theoretical concepts and ideas and then ask students to critically engage and reflect based on their own learning and teaching experiences
  • many of the sessions will be built around required reading and students will be asked to lead parts of the sessions based on reading and preparation completed in advance of the session

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Lectures 9 Weekly 2 hours 18
Seminar 4 Fortnightly 1 hour 4
Preparation and Reading 128
Total 150

Summative Assessment

Component: Word Essay Component Weighting: 100%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Word essay 3,000 words 100%

Formative Assessment:

Assignments prepared in advance by the student and discussed during the seminars.

Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University