PhD research fellow in English linguistics and bilingual education

Deadline: 27. january 2019

Western Norway University of Applied Sciences, Faculty of Education, Arts and Sports, Centre for Arts, Culture and Communication, has an open position for a PhD research fellow in English linguistics and bilingual education.

Western Norway University of Applied Sciences

On January 1st, 2017, Bergen University College, Sogn og Fjordane University College and Stord/Haugesund University College merged to form Western Norway University of Applied Sciences.

With about 16,000 students, is one of the largest higher education institutions in Norway. A broad range of academic programmes are offered at Bachelor, Master and PhD levels.

Our ambition is to build stronger and more solid academic and research environments that will interact nationally and internationally. The aim is to become a recognized actor on the international higher education arena. Increased international cooperation and engagement in externally funded projects will work towards this goal.

The PhD research fellow will conduct a pre-defined project on bilingual education (BE)/Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL) in Norway. Within this project, the successful applicant will define their own focus. The project is based on the following background: Internationally, BE/CLIL programs have been very successful. In Norway, the situation is different. After some pilot projects, there is currently very little BE/CLIL in Norway, especially at the kindergarten and barneskole level. This raises the question why such few schools and teachers in Norway use a BE/CLIL approach, especially at the lower levels of the education system. More specifically, it points towards a need to investigate the conditions and factors influencing BE/CLIL and the introduction of such programs into the education system in Norway. To do justice to the complexity of the issue, the project is anchored in a study of the local, regional, and national premises for education and teaching which govern and impact the introduction of new language teaching programs. As a second element, the project will investigate education stakeholders’ attitudes, preferably at the barneskole level.

The successful candidate will become a member of the research group "Analyzing and Assessing Linguistic Multicompetence" (AALM), which is part of the strategic research programme "Languages, Communication and Learning" AALM is an interdisciplinary research group of scholars sharing a common starting point in empirical studies of bi-/ multilingual language production, language assessment and the development of research methods. The successful candidate will work within the English section at HVL, an expanding, dynamic section interested in a large variety of research topics and approaches. The candidate will be offered to join the English section’s research group" Researching Teacher Education, Language and Literature" (RETELL) for further networking and support.

The successful candidate is expected to develop appropriate data collection instruments in collaboration with the supervisor, collect and analyze data relevant to the project, present project results at conferences and co-author publications, as well as to network and interact with colleagues and stakeholders nationally and internationally. The candidate’s work is expected to result in a doctoral dissertation.

QualificationsThe successful candidate needs to have a Master’s degree in a language subject, preferably in English, and preferably with a documented specialization in linguistics and/or language didactics. A Master’s degree from other fields, for example psychology or social sciences, may be relevant, if their relevance to the project is properly documented.

Master’s degree or equivalent qualifications must be obtained prior to submission deadline. Alternatively, the Master’s thesis must have been submitted before the application deadline. In the latter case, it is required that the Master's degree must be awarded within 4 weeks after the application deadline.

In addition to the required educational background, the following criteria will be evaluated:

  • Excellent spoken and written command of both Norwegian and English. Additional languages are an advantage.
  • Strong interest in topics related to language teaching and multilingualism.
  • Personal characteristics: excellent social and collaboration skills, reliable, diligent, and able to work independently in a structured manner.

Experience with or interest in mixed-methods approaches, surveys, and interviews are an advantage. Experience in teaching, for example as a teaching assistant, and good knowledge of the Norwegian school system are an advantage.

Applicants must submit a preliminary project description of up to five pages that presents the topic, problem, method and choice of theory for a potential project. This preliminary project description will be used for evaluating the candidate’s potential for completing a PhD, but will not be considered the final project description. The final fellowship project will be developed in consultation with supervisors.

In their project description, applicants should provide a short overview of relevant current Norwegian education policy, as well as an overview of the field of bilingual education/CLIL, including relevant terminology, and relevant research results. Applicants should also formulate one or more tentative research questions and suggest one or more methodological approaches to address these research questions.

In the evaluation of which candidate is best qualified, emphasis will be placed on relevant professional qualifications, as documented by the quality of the master's thesis (or equivalent qualifications) and other relevant experience, for example previous coursework or research. The candidate’s project description will likewise be important in determining the quality of the application, as will be personal suitability and motivation for the position.

The successful candidate must apply to the doctoral program "Bildung and pedagogical practices" at the Faculty of Teacher Education, Sport and Cultural Studies. Normally, only candidates with master degrees marked A or B are accepted into the doctoral programme. An application for admission to the doctoral program must be submitted after appointment. The final plan for the completion of the program must be approved by the Western Norway University of Applied Sciences within 3 months of beginning the position.

It is a requirement that the successful candidate has their workplace at Western Norway University of Applied Sciences. The position is a 4-year position with a 25% work load of teaching and administration.

Applicants may receive some supervision on the preliminary project description. Feel free to contact Christine Möller-Omrani ([email protected]) and Silje Valde Onsrud ([email protected]) for questions about the position.

Application procedure

Applications will be evaluated by an expert panel of three members.

Applicants are asked to submit their application and CV online. Please use the link “Apply for this job” (“Søk stillingen”). The following documentation should be uploaded as an attachment to the online application:

  • Master Thesis
  • Copies of selected academic publications
  • A CV with a complete list of academic publications (if any)
  • Diplomas and certificates

Applicants should indicate which publications or parts of publications should be given special consideration in the evaluation. If the documents submitted are not in a Scandinavian language or in English, the applicants must submit certified translations of these. The transcripts must specify the topics, the course works, and the grades at the bachelor`s and master`s degree levels.

Applicants should note that the evaluation will be based on the documentation submitted electronically via Jobbnorge within the submission deadline. The applicants are responsible for ensuring that all the documentation is submitted before the closing date. It is of utmost importance that all publications to be considered in the evaluation are uploaded as an attachment with the application, since these are sent electronically to the expert panel. Applications cannot be sent by email or to individuals at the college.


Initial salaries will be offered at grade 51 (code 1017) in the Civil Service pay grade table scale. There

is a compulsory 2 % deduction to the pension fund. The successful applicant must comply with the guidelines that apply to the position at any time.

General information

The appointment will be made in accordance with the regulations for State Employees and Civil Servants in Norway. Organizational changes and changes in the duties and responsibilities associated with the position must be expected.

The Norwegian public service is committed to reflecting the social diversity in its workforce, and the personnel policy of the Western Norway University of Applied Sciences aims to achieve a balanced workforce. All qualified candidates are therefore encouraged to apply for the position, irrespective of cultural background, gender, age or disability.

In accordance with §25 (2) of the Freedom of Information Act, applicants may request that they are not identified in the open list of applicants. The University, however, reserves the right to publish the name of the applicants. Applicants will be informed if the University intends to exercise this right.

Home pages:


  • Center Manager at Centre for Educational Research Kjellrunn Hiis Hauge, phone: +47 55 58 59 67
  • Associate Professor Christine Möller-Omrani, phone: +47 55 58 58 94

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