Adam Unthiah

I have an MA in Modern Languages (French, German, Spanish) from the University of St Andrews, and an MPhil in Research in Second Language Education from the University of Cambridge.

Drawing on my experiences of teaching English in France and Spain, I am interested in the role of morphological awareness in the modern foreign language classroom. This is the focus of my doctoral dissertation. Specifically, I wish to investigate cross linguistic morphological awareness in the modern foreign language (MFL) classroom in England with the aim of establishing an empirical basis for the conceptualisation of morphological awareness as an inter-language skill. Moreover, as the reality of many MFL classrooms in England comprises those filled with pupils of many different native languages, my study seeks to compare and contrast native English speakers with English as Additional Language (EAL) learners with the aim of giving language practitioners in England an insight into how morphological awareness may or may not help vocabulary acquisition for language learners of different backgrounds.

Title of thesis:
Cross-linguistic contributions of morphological awareness to vocabulary knowledge for learners of English as an Additional Language (EAL) and English native speakers in the Modern Foreign Language (MFL) classroom in England

Professor Victoria Murphy and Professor Kathy Sylva

Research interests:
Morphological awareness, modern foreign language (MFL), vocabulary acquisition, English as an Additional Language (EAL)


  • Research student

College affiliation

  • St Hilda's College

Research groups

  • Applied Linguistics