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Dr Stephen J Disney

Senior Lecturer

School of Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences

01752 636700 Ext:4220

sdisney (without the space)

Steve Disney

Role Summary

I am the programme leader for the BA English Language & Professional Studies and Link Tutor for BA International Professional English degree in Hanoi, Vietnam. I am the University's International Academic Strategic Lead and also have oversight of our on campus English Language courses.  I am actively researching in the field of English Language pronunciation and interaction.


  • PhD Linguistics, Lancaster University
  • MA Modern English Language, UCL
  • BA English Language and Linguistics (University of Wales Bangor)
  • Senior Fellow HEA



My current teaching areas are broad and I teach across the spectrum of sound, structure and language in use. I teach Phonetics and Phonology on the Speech & Language Therapy degree and Linguistic Analysis, Diversity and Metaphor.


Prior to my academic career, I taught English in Poland, Japan and Qatar for several years, which gave me a good grounding in some complex issues in intercultural communication. As a result, I am now focusing my research interests on learners of English, with a particular interest in migrants’ and access to healthcare. I am currently researching interaction in healthcare using real-life language data. I am also leading a project with our partners in the School of Foreign Languages at the University of Science & Technology in Hanoi, Vietnam, looking at the learning of English amongst Vietnamese English students. 


Journal articles:

Golder; E. Ladd; K. Mills; R. Thain; S. Disney (2023) International recruitment of radiographers and the development of a workplace integration support package: Project evaluation. Radiography 29(2) 442-449. 

Disney, Stephen, (2020) Figurative Language in Describing Pain and Lifestyle Impact. English Studies 101(8) 1009-1029. https://DOI:10.1080/0013838x.2020.1847891  

2016 Another Visit to BE supposed to from a Diachronic Constructionist Perspective. English Studies 97(8), pp. 892–916. 

2013 “The reputed sense of BE meant to: a case of gradual change by analogy”. In Giacalone Ramat, Anna, Caterina Mauri and Piera Molinelli. Synchrony and Diachrony: A dynamic interface. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. 105-124.

Conference presentations:

2017 Describing and coping with pain: figurative language and people with limited English. iMean 5. UWE.

2016 Migrants and healthcare: figurative language in describing and coping with pain. IALIC 2016 Barcelona.

2014 Blended Constructions and Emerging Modals: UK-CLC5 Lancaster University.

2014 Generalisation and constructional smoothing: the case of the Predictive Passive Construction: The 8th International Conference on Construction Grammar Osnabruck University, Germany.

2013 Another visit to BE supposed to. SLE 2013. 46th Annual Meeting of the Societas Linguistica Europaea. University of Split, Croatia.

2012 Analogy in language change: the case of BE going to revisited again UK-CLC, Kings College London.

2012 The effect of error in the OED on grammaticalisation research: the case of going to: NRG-4 New Reflections on Grammaticalisation. Edinburgh University.

2012 The World English Model: variation in register. Proceedings from the 6th International IDEA Conference, Istanbul.

2011 Variation in the form BE Meant to: what it is and where it comes from: Workshop on Gradualness in change and its relation to synchronic variation and use. University of Pavia.

2011 The World English Model: variation in register IDEA-11 English Language and Research Association of Turkey. Istanbul.

2009 The World English Model revised: Definite article use in ICE-GB and ICE-HK: 4th Lancaster University International Postgraduate Conference in Linguistics and Language Teaching. Lancaster University.

2008 The Grammaticalisation of BE going to. The 3rd Newcastle Postgraduate Conference in Theoretical and Applied Linguistics. Newcastle University.

2008 A domain matrix view of the uses and development of BE going to + infinitive. 3rd Lancaster University International Postgraduate Conference in Linguistics and Language Teaching. Lancaster University.

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