Summer 2023 - EDUC 711 G001

Special Topics

Class Number: 4950

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    May 8 – Aug 4, 2023: Tue, 4:30–7:20 p.m.



Variable units: 3, 4, 5.


Calender Description:
The implications of a trans/languaging view for deconolonizing the field of language education and for equity, diversity and inclusion (EDI) in education will be a central focuse of the course

Course Details:
This course aims at elucidating the "trans/languanging" perspective in contrast to the usual focus on language. Whereas the "language" perspective tends to assume that there is a readily available thing called "language" that we use, the "trans/languaging" perspective emphasizes that trans/languaging is a dynamic verb-like doing that is inseparable from time, process and flows (Lenke & Lin, 2022; Lin 2019, Thibault, 2013). How we view trans/languaging as relevant to how we view the eco-social and material world in which we live, relate to, and make sense of/to one another (Lemke, 2000, 2002). This view requires that we consider some basic ontological questions concerning what the eco-social and material world is like and its implications for meaning making, identity trans/formation in both education settings and beyond. Rejecting the reductionist view of the world as consisting of a collection of things or entities, we centre the course on the ontological assumption that the world we live in is one of relations, processes, and events (Ingold, 2004, 2006, 2021; Lemke & Lin, 2022). Our starting point is the that trans/languaging is a form of action that has much in common with other forms fo action while it also has its own specific characteristics that nonetheless build on and enbale it to integrate with other forms of action. In considering how and why this is so, we will engage with a range of topics as set out in the outline below. The implications of a trans/languaging view for decolonizing the field of language education and for equity, diveristy and inclusion (EDI) in education will be a central focus of the course.


The course is organized around the following objectives:

1. Develop awareness of trans/languaging perspectives alternative to the traditional linguistic code perspectice;
2. Develop awareness of process-based ontology; i.e., understanding the world as constituted by relations, actions, processes and events, rather than by entities;
3. Develop awareness of the implications and potential of these perspectives for trans/formation of identities and for deconolonizing deep-rooted canons and practices in the language education field.


  • Active in-class participatio (throughout the term) 15%
  • An in-class presentation on a course reading (throughout the term) 25%
  • Online discussion on required readings 20%
  • Final paper 40%



Theme 1 (weeks 1-4): Trans/languanging Perspectives

Thibaulty, P.J. (2011). First-order languanging dynamics and second-order language: The distribute languange view. Ecological Psychology, 23(3), 201-245.

Lin, A.M.Y (2019). Theories of trans/languaging and trans-semiotizing: Implications for content-based education classrooms. International Journal of Bilingual Education and Bilingualism, 22(1), 5-16.

Lin, A.M.Y., Wu, Y., & Lemke, J.L. (2020). "It takes a village to research a village": Conversations of Angel Lin and Jay Lemke on contemporary issued in translanguaging. In S.M.C. Lau and S. Van Viegen Stile (Eds.), Critical plurilingual pedagogies: Struggling toward equity rather that euqality (pp. 47-74). Switzerland: Springer.

Lemker, K.L., & Lin, A.M.Y. (2022). Translanguaging and flows: towards an alternative conceptual model. Educational Linguistics.

Enfield, N.J. & Sidnell, Jack (2017). Part 1 (chaprters 1&2). In The Concept of Action, pp 3-31. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Cowley, Stephen J. (2011). Taking a language stance. Ecological Psychology 23(3); 185-209. To link to this article:

Stuart, Susan A.J. & Thibault, Paul J. (2015). Enkinaesthetic polyphony: The underpinning for first order languaging. In Lüdtke, Urike M. (ed), Emotion in Language: Theory-research-application, pp.113-133. Amsterdam/Philadelphia: John Benjamins.

Theme 2 (weeks 5-8) Process-based Ontology

Thibault, P.J. (2021. Introduction. In Distributed Languanging, Affective Dynamics, and the Human Ecology, Volume 1: The sense-making body, pp. 9-17. London & New York: Routledge.

Ingold, Tim. (2020). Correspondences. Oxford: Polity.

Lemke, J.L. (2008). Identity, development and desire: critical questions. In R. Iedema, & C.R. Caldas-Couthard (Eds.), Identity trouble (pp.17-42).
Basingstoke, Hampshire: Pargrave MacMillan

Toohey, K. (2019). The onto-epistemologies of new materialism: Implications for applied linguistics pedagogies and research. Applied Linguistics, 40 (6),937-956.

Dewey, John & Bentley, Arthur F. (1949). Transactions as known and named. In Knowing and the Known, pp. 136-143.

Roth, Wolff-Michael, (2016). Language and activity. In Concrete Human Psychology, pp. 29-28. London & New York: Routledge.

Vygostky, Lev (1994/1935). The problem of the environment. in: René can der Veer & Jaan Valsiner (Eds.) The Vygostky Reader, pp. 338-354. Oxford, UK & Cambridge, USA: Blackwell.

Theme 3 (weeks 9-13): Re-thinking Traditional Notions of Language, Culture, Competence, Mastery, Native Speaker, Identity; Implications for Education

Flores, N & Rosa, J (in press). Undoing competence: Coloniality, homogeneity, and the overrepresentation of whiteness in applied linguistics. Language Learning.

Lemke, J.L. (2002). Language development and identity: Multiple timescales in the social ecology of learning. Language acquisition and Language socialization. Ecological perspectives, 68-87.

Li, W. (2022). Translanguaging as a political stance: implications for English language education. ELT Journal,76 (2), 172-182.

Singh, J. (2017). Unthinking mastery: Dehumanism and decolonial entanglements. Durham, North Carolina: Duke University Press.

Shi, D. (2022) Recontextualization as embodied and embedded sense-making activity: An ecosocial semiotic approach to languaging dynamics of teacher talk in university literature classrooms. Linguistics and Eductionm 71, 101102.

Toohey, K. & Smythe, S (2022). A different difference in teacher education: posthuman and decolonizing perspectives. Language and Education, 36(2), 122-136. Harré, Rom & Gillett, Grant (1994). The discursive originas of the sense of self. In The Discursive Mind (chapter 7), pp. 97-111.

Roth, Wolff-Michael, (2016). Personhood in practice. In Concrete Human Psychology, pp. 178-197. London & New York: Routledge.

Bamberg, Michael & Barbara Zielke (207). From dialogical practices to polyphone thought? Developmental inquiry and where to look for it. International Journal for Dialogical Science, 2(1): 223-242.

"Thibault, Paul J. (2012). Hypermedia selves and hypermedia stories: Narrativity, writing, and normativity in personal blogs. In: Mariavita Cambria, Cristina Arizzi, & Giulia Magazzù (Eds.), Web Genres and Web Tools: Contributions from the Living Knowledge project, pp. pp. 11-52. Como-Pavia: IBIS. Volume 4 in the series, Multimodal Text Studies in English, Anthony
Baldry, series editor ("

Thibault, Paul J. (2019). Simplex selves, functional synergies, and selving: Languaging in a complex world. Language Sciences, 71: 49-67.

All readings will be available through SFU library, or electronically on Canvas.


Your personalized Course Material list, including digital and physical textbooks, are available through the SFU Bookstore website by simply entering your Computing ID at:

Graduate Studies Notes:

Important dates and deadlines for graduate students are found here: The deadline to drop a course with a 100% refund is the end of week 2. The deadline to drop with no notation on your transcript is the end of week 3.

Registrar Notes:


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