If you can’t be bothered to read my thesis, read this instead (by Michaela Salmon)

A few weeks ago, Lauren Godfrey-Smith wrote about her experience with 3MT. As Lauren describes, getting your PhD dissertation across to a broad audience in only three minutes is no mean feat but the challenge ultimately helps to clarify the content. Distilling a complex document into a small digestible chunk is the best and most viable way to sharing it with an audience beyond our cohort of students and academics. Continue reading

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Six reasons why these boots are made for walking (interviews) (by Lauren Godfrey-Smith)

For us at BILD, part of doing critical sociolinguistics means questioning, challenging, and pushing the boundaries of the way we consider language in society. It can also mean pushing the boundaries of the way we conduct research about languages in society. My PhD research is about non-classroom language anxiety, and when I started planning my study, I knew that I wanted it to reflect this notion of questioning, challenging, and pushing boundaries. One of the ways that I did this was at the methodological level, using walking interviews as one of my sources of data. So, in celebration of walking interviews, I present to you six reasons to love (and maybe try!) walking interviews.  Continue reading

BILDing networks at the EGSS Conference 2015 (by Michaela Salmon)

The last week and a half have been an exciting time for us; we presented ourselves publically as a group at McGill’s Education Graduate Students’ Society (EGSS) annual conference, as well as hosting and developing a workshop that explored exciting new research methodologies, particularly those applicable to sociolinguistics (see tweet below).

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Languages, generations (by Dr. Mela Sarkar)

This is my first blog post of any kind, ever. It’s also the very first blog post on our new BILD/LIDA site, which feels like a big responsibility. This is a kind of public writing on language that, for me, feels very new. BILD/LIDA as a social-cum-academic group in fact feels quite familiar (I have been part of something similar connected to second language acquisition research that operates out of Concordia for about twenty years now, since I was a new PhD student there). There ought to be more groups like this – regular gatherings of academics at all career levels who care passionately about a research area and the issues involved. Even if there’s no research funding, or specific projects that would need funding launched yet. In this group, BILD/LIDA, everybody’s thesis work has been launched, and sometimes completed, but thesis work tends to happen in a person’s individual corner. We need reasons to come out of our corners and talk to each other, reasons that are not corporate-driven. Universities are corporations; research, at least the post-thesis, published kind, is now mostly about dollars, and it is difficult even to think about in non-monetary terms. Scholars — I use the word advisedly, and with affection; for me it means something different from “academics” — have been gathering in this spontaneous and unfunded way for centuries, perhaps millennia. Famous for it! But only now are they able to write, inter alia, blog posts about their consuming and mutual passions that will be read immediately, as fast as light can take the words to other screens, not only by their fellow gatherers but also, potentially, by anybody with internet access. And that is new. Terrifying, liberating, and new. Continue reading