Analysing learner language: Metaphor analysis

The Research Institute for Leaner Autonomy Education (RILAE) is delighted to welcome back Professor Hayo Reinders next week. He will be giving the following workshop which is open to everyone. In addition, he is available for consultations about research and study (schedule here).

Session date: Wednesday November 7th
Time: 12.20 to 13.00
Location: 8116 


In this session we will look at metaphors and their place in learners’ accounts of their language learning journeys. Metaphors are an integral part of how we express ourselves and a reflection of who we are – and how we see ourselves. By investigating learners’ voices through metaphors we can gain deep insight into the learning process and identify better ways to support our learners. In this session we will briefly talk about the history and rationale for metaphor analysis before looking at examples of not only learners’ but also teachers’ and researchers’ metaphors. In the second half we will try our hand at analysing a text for its metaphoric content. It is my belief that this type of ‘deep dive’ into our learners’ expressions of themselves is particularly helpful for understanding – and ultimately improving – reflective dialogues, such as those common in language advising sessions.


There is no pre-reading but I will give you an article to take away and read afterwards. If you have not attended any of the three preceding ‘learner language’ sessions, I recommend that you read the materials for our first session, which gives an overview of types of learner language and ways of analysing them. You can find this on one Canvas site: (If you do not have access to this, drop me an email at and I will add you right away).

About Hayo Reinders

HayoReindersColorDr Hayo Reinders ( is Professor of Education at Unitec in New Zealand and TESOL Professor and Director of the doctoral programme at Anaheim University in the USA. Hayo has published in the areas of autonomy, technology, teacher education and out-of-class learning. He edits a book series for Palgrave Macmillan and is editor of the journal Innovation in Language Learning and Teaching.

LAb session: Call for presenters. November 8th

Rilae - The LAb Sessions - Google DocsYou are warmly invited to attend another online event organised by the Research Institute for Learner Autonomy Education (RILAE) on the theme of identity and learner autonomy. It is our third ‘LAb session’ following the success of the first two. You can listen live from any device. We will also record it so you can listen later. Our featured speakers are Alice Chik, Adelia Peña Clavel, Carol Griffiths, and Kie Yamamoto.

We welcome proposals from colleagues who would like to give a short presentation on the theme of identity and learner autonomy. Please see the website for details of how to submit. Contributions could include short research reports, examples of best practice, bright ideas, book reviews, and more. Continue reading

New publications by SALC team members

Asta, E., & Mynard, J. (2018). Exploring basic psychological needs in a language learning center. Part 1: Conducting student interviews. Relay Journal, 1(2). LINK

Edlin, C., & Bonner, E. (2018). Peer Scan: Leveraging augmented reality technology and crowdsourced feedback to help learners navigate to effective materials for self-access language learning. Relay Journal, 1(2). LINK

McLoughlin, D., & Mynard, J. (2018). How do self-directed learners keep going? The role of interest in sustained learning. 2017 PanSIG Journal, 74-81. LINK

Mynard, J., Mideros, D., & O’Leary, C. (2018). Introduction: Special issue featuring papers from the Learner Autonomy Forum at AILA, Rio de Janeiro, 2017). Studies in Self-Access Learning, 9(3), 242-246. LINK

Mynard, J., & Yamamoto, K. (2018). User perceptions of an app for managing self-directed language learning. Relay Journal, 1(2). LINK

Shelton-Strong, S. J., & Mynard, J. (2018). Affective factors in self-access learning. Relay Journal, 1(2). LINK

Viberg, O., Laaksolahti, J., Mynard, J., & Mavroudi, A. (2018). Assessing the potential role of technology in promoting self-directed language learning: A collaborative project between Japan and Sweden. Relay Journal, 1(2). LINK

Wongsarnpigoon, I. (2018). Finding the positive: Reflective observation of an advising session. Relay Journal, 1(2). LINK