Proceedings of the 6th International Conference on Language, Literature, Culture and Education 2016

Multilingual Researchers Engaging in Educational Theorizing

Michael Singh

University of Western Sydney


The purpose of this study was to investigate potential pedagogies for extending and deepening Multilingual Higher Degree Researchers’ (MHDRs) capabilities for theorising by having them use their full linguistic repertoire, and understand the reasons for doing so. This longitudinal study, which was initiated in 2003, has engaged of population of 79 MHDRs, who in addition to speaking English, also spoke Chinese, Hindi, Tamil and Vietnamese, in post-monolingual intercultural education. A sample of 12 participants volunteered to engage projects informed by pedagogies of intellectual equality. The most significant findings reported in this paper are that MHDRs who have the will can make an original contribution to the production, application and circulation of theoretical knowledge by (a) exploring conceptual divergences within/between languages for theorising; (b) accounting for the value of theorising through using metaphors from multiple languages, and (c) demonstrating and developing multilingual capabilities for theorising using images. This paper, and the research project of which it is a part, indicates that MHDRs can develop their capabilities for theorising by using their full linguistic repertoire. Future research in Anglophone universities can further investigate ways to institutionalise this as a means for MHDRs to make original contributions to knowledge.


conceptual divergences within/between languages, linguistic repertoire, multilingual capabilities for theorising, multilingual higher degree researchers, pedagogies of intellectual equality, post-monolingual intercultural education, theorising through metaphors

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