Director of Postgraduate English; Programme Director for the MSc Forensic Linguistics.
I joined the Centre for Forensic Linguistics at Aston in 2009. I originally qualified as a barrister, and practised civil and criminal law in Liverpool before moving to the Parliamentary Counsel Office, Whitehall, where I worked as part of a small team of specialist lawyers responsible for drafting primary legislation. Combining long-standing interests in both language and law, I completed an MA in Applied Linguistics and subsequently a PhD on police interviewing at the University of Nottingham. My research interests include all aspects of language and communication in legal contexts, especially spoken interaction and the use of language data as evidence.
I also supervise dissertations at postgraduate and PhD level.
‘Bringing linguistics into practice: Achieving impact through training police interviewers’. Invited member of panel on ‘Impacts in Language Research’. iMean 5 Conference, UWE Bristol, April 2017.
‘Police interview data in the England & Wales courtroom: routine contamination of evidence?’ 5th International Conference on Language, Law and Discourse, Örebro University, Sweden, Sept 2015.
Invited colloquium speaker: ‘Working with professional partners in forensic discourse analysis’. 12th Biennial Conference on Forensic Linguistics, Guangzhou, China, July 2015.
‘Language and Communication Training for Police Interviewers: Applying Linguistics to Professional Practice’. 12th Biennial Conference on Forensic Linguistics, Guangzhou, China, July 2015 (joint paper with Dr Nicci MacLeod).
‘Language and Communication for Police Interviewers: Training, Evaluation & Development’. Poster presentation with Dr Nicci MacLeod at the BAAL Annual Conference, Warwick University, Sept 2014.
‘Forensic Linguistics for Interviewers: What linguistics can do for you’. International Investigative Interviewing Research Group Annual Conference, Toronto, May 2012.
‘Tapes, transcripts and trials: What happens to interview data and why this matters’. International Investigative Interviewing Research Group Annual Conference, Toronto, May 2012.
‘Identity, audience design and trans-contextuality in police interviews’. Sociolinguistics Symposium 18, Southampton University, Sept 2010.
•‘Investigative interviews as self-fulfilling prophecies? A discourse analysis of interviewer influence over accounts produced by interviewees’. International Investigative Interviewing Research Group (iIIRG) Annual Conference, Norwegian Police University College, Stavern, June 2010.
‘The discursive construction of evidence in the UK police interview’. 9th International Investigative Psychology Conference, January 2010, London. Part of panel representing iIIRG.
‘A case of mistaken identity? The discursive construction of identity in the English police interview’. Dialogic Language Use 2: Constructing Identity in Interpersonal Communication, University of Helsinki, August 2009.
‘The discursive construction of evidence in the police interview: case study of a rape suspect’. IAFL 9th Biennial International Conference on Forensic Linguistics / Language and Law, VU University Amsterdam, July 2009.
‘The evidential role of police-suspect interviews: linguistic theory and current practice’. International Investigative Interviewing Research Group (iIIRG) Annual Conference, University of Teesside, April 2009.
‘Police Interviews in England: Contaminated Evidence?’ IAFL 8th Biennial International Conference on Forensic Linguistics / Language and Law, University of Washington, Seattle, July 2007.
‘Evidence Transformed: UK Police Interviews’ – part of international panel session on ‘Language and the Criminal Law’. Joint Annual Meeting of the Law and Society Association and the Research Committee on Sociology of Law, Berlin, July 2007.
‘Police Interview Discourse and its Role(s) in the English Judicial Process’. 2nd European IAFL Conference on Forensic Linguistics / Language and Law, Barcelona, Sept 2006.
‘Power and resistance in police interview discourse’. 1st Critical Approaches to Discourse Analysis Across Disciplines Conference, UEA, June 2006.
Invited speaker at one-day forensic linguistics conference, Linnaeus University, Sweden, 2014.
British Science Festival talks on forensic linguistics, 2011 and 2015.
Invited speaker at the SAHCA Conference for solicitor advocates, Birmingham, 2013.
Invited talks on various topics relating to forensic linguistics and investigative interviewing, at York University (2015, 2016), Westminster University (2014); Surrey University (2012); Linnaeus University (2011); Paderborn University (2010); Leicester De Montfort University (2010).
Delivered 3-day Forensic Linguistics course for Interpreting and Translation students, University of Las Palmas, 2012.
Contributing lecturer on ‘Investigating Sexual Crimes’ course run in conjunction with Birmingham University, 2012.
Visiting lecturer, MSc Forensic Psychology at Teesside University, 2009-2012.
Tutor on the International Summer School in Forensic Linguistic Analysis, 2007-.