Marina Orsini-Jones

Professor, Towards a role-reversal model of action-research-supported threshold concept pedagogy in languages and linguistics, Coventry University

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    1995 …2022

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    Personal profile

    Research Interests

    Applied Linguistics; Threshold Concepts Pedagogy; Blended and Online Learning; Intercultural Communicative Competence; MOOCs; CALL


    Marina is Professor in Education Practice and Associate Head of School (Global Engagement) in the School of Humanities and is also seconded as Research Associate to the Centre for Global Learning (GLEA) at Coventry University (UK).  Marina is passionate about the internationalisation of the curriculum through Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL)/Virtual Exchange (VE) (also known as telecollaboration) and has engaged with innovation in language learning and teaching since the 1980s.   She applies an action-research-informed thresholds concept pedagogy methodological approach to her work and has organised various conferences at Coventry University and workshops for other Higher Education Institutions both in the UK and overseas.  She has presented at over 100 national and international conferences and is part of the editorial review boards of various journals and conferences. Marina has led numerous action research projects and teams and in 2013 she was awarded a National Teaching Fellowship from the HEA (Higher Education Academy) in the UK, in recognition of the national and international impact of her innovative work in languages and linguistics. In 2016 she obtained a Principal Fellowship, in recognition of her strategic leadership in HE. In collaboration with her colleagues in the School of Humanities and in GLEA, she set up new COIL exchanges and research collaborations with Brazil, China,  France, Mexico, the Netherlands, Spain, Sri Lanka and now Vietnam with this ViVEXELT (Vietnam Virtual EXchange for English Language Teaching) project, funded by the British Council and supported by the Vietnam National Foreign Language Policy team.


    Marina has  published work on Virtual Exchange (VE), digital literacies, personal development planning, intercultural communicative competence and threshold concepts, often in collaboration with her students.  She likes to reflect on her practice ‘through the looking glass’ of her students’ perspectives (e.g. Towards a Role-Reversal Model of Threshold Concept Pedagogy, 2014 and Intercultural Communicative Competence for Global Citizenship, with Fiona Lee, 2018). Her most recent work (2017 to date) relates to the integration of existing FutureLearn MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) into the English teacher education curriculum in conjunction with VE, to encourage students in English teacher education to critically review their practice and their beliefs on learning and teaching 'in' action, 'on' action and 'for' action with international communities of practice: e.g.  this publication stemming from an English Language Teaching Research Award (ELTRA), funded by the British Council, available here:


    Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

    In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

    • SDG 4 - Quality Education

    External positions

    External Examiner University of Southampton

    1 Jan 2017 → …

    HEA Associate

    1 Jan 2015 → …

    HEA Associate

    1 Jan 2015 → …


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