ELT research awards

Through this scheme we aim to facilitate the production of innovative research to benefit the learning and teaching of English throughout the world by co-funding a number of partnership awards. 

ELTRA 2019

The deadline for submitting ELTRA proposals is 4 March 2019.

Now in its eleventh year, the scheme successfully facilitates innovative research in the learning and teaching of English by co-funding a number of partnership awards of up to £20,000. The resulting articles are published online in the British Council Research Papers series.

See the winners of this year's awards.

What is the purpose of the ELTRA Scheme?

  • To facilitate the production of high quality research from the UK relevant to ELT practitioners.
  • To improve access of ELT policy makers and professionals worldwide to high quality and relevant research from the UK.
  • To facilitate and encourage the establishment and maintenance of active research links between ELT professionals and policy makers in the UK and overseas.

Who may apply?

Any person resident in the UK with an affiliation to a UK educational institution. The award agreement will normally be with the institution.

Note: Although the applicant must be resident in the UK, the research may, in whole or in part, take place outside the UK or by persons not resident in the UK.  

What type of activity can be considered?

The British Council is particularly interested in research within the following areas:

  • Learning & teaching of English at younger ages
  • ICT and new technologies in ELT
  • Teacher education and training
  • English as a Medium of Instruction (EMI)
  • English language testing and assessment and applications of the CEFR
  • English language programme evaluation
  • English for development: Social, economic, political aspects of English, education, and language teaching
  • Role of English language in promoting peace, security and resilience
  • The role of English in migration
  • Multilingualism and English

However, proposals for any research activity relating directly to the learning, teaching, or assessment of English as a foreign, second, or additional language will be considered.

There must be a clear research output which the British Council will disseminate and which must be in a format that can be shared publicly and without cost throughout the world.

Successful applicants must produce a final article on the project, and in the case of longer projects, an interim report. This would normally include the rationale, methodology, findings, discussion and implications, and references. See Guidelines for authors for more information. In addition to this output, researchers are encouraged to publish further outputs elsewhere, for example in peer-reviewed journals and at conferences.

What type of activity is outside the scheme?

  • The research must not have already taken place or be underway.
  • The research output / final article must be in English (though there may also be a version in another language).
  • Funding will only be agreed for a maximum initial period of one year.
  • This scheme is not intended to fund the field work of Ph.D. candidates or similar.
  • We define research as original investigation undertaken in order to gain knowledge and understanding.
  • Researchers / institutions currently in receipt of a research award cannot apply for a new one. Recipients of awards will become eligible to submit research proposals when the research report has been accepted for publication by the British Council.

Current ELT Research projects:

  • University of Southampton
    From English language learners to Intercultural Citizens: Chinese student sojourners development of intercultural citizenship in ELT and EMI programmes

  • University of Central Lancashire
    Embedding ICT to teach and assess the pragmatic targets of refusals and disagreements in spoken English

  • University of Oxford
    Transition from secondary education CLIL programmes (science) to tertiary education EMI

  • University of Leeds
    Investigating the applicability of the CEFR for self-assessment in tertiary writing instruction in China: accessibility, feasibility, effectiveness and usefulness 

  • University of Huddersfield
    Classroom assessment: the development of teachers’ cognitions

  • University of Bath
    English medium Instruction (EMI) in a multilingual Francophone context: An investigation of the learning strategies and resources of primary school children in Cameroon

  • University of Hertfordshire
    ELT Teachers' stories of resilience

  • University of York
    A critical approach to training for English Medium Instruction in Higher Education: towards a theory of EMI

  • University of Glasgow
    Challenging the Translingual Turn: Student-Teachers’ Perceptions, Practices and Networks

  • University of Hull
    Understanding Reflective Writing in ELT Teacher Education: an Investigation Characterizing Successful Instances of Teacher-generated Reflective Commentary

How can I apply?

The deadline for submitting ELTRA proposals is 4 March 2019.