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Dr Julia Hofweber
Dr Julia Hofweber profile picture
  • Research Fellow
  • IOE - Psychology & Human Development
  • UCL Institute of Education
Research Summary

My research interests are wide, but I’m primarily interested in the cognitive processes underlying language acquisition and language selection in multilinguals. My PhD project was funded by the School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences, University of Reading. In my PhD, I investigated the effects of bilingualism on cognition, focusing on the question whether frequent switching between languages (code-switching) had the potential to enhance bilinguals' executive functions. Following my PhD, I stayed at the University of Reading, working as a Postdoctoral researcher on the Language Learning Strand of the Creative Multilingualism Project. In this project, I was involved in conducting a longitudinal intervention study exploring the relationship between different teaching approaches and the development of mental flexibility and linguistic creativity in the second language.

Currently, I am working at the Department of Psychology and Human Development (IoE, UCL) as a Postdoctoral research fellow with Prof. Chloë Marshall on a Leverhulme-funded project about the acquisition of sign language. This three-year project will investigate implicit learning processes in adults acquiring sign language. Thus, I hope to make novel contributions to our understanding of language learning in the visual modality.

In addition, I am involved in three other bilingualism-related research projects. The first project is funded by the Centre of Literacy and Multilingualism, University of Reading, and explores the potential impact of different code-switching patterns on creativity and executive functions in Turkish-English bilinguals (PI: Prof. Treffers-Daller). The second project is funded by the IOE International Fund supporting collaborations with the Global South. It investigates the cognitive processes underlying language switching in (Bengali-English) bilinguals with aphasia, with the aim of teasing apart typical and atypical switching (PI: Dr. Julia Hofweber). This project is conducted in collaboration with Dr. Arpita Bose, University of Reading, and Prof. Niladri Dash, Indian Statistical Institute, Kolkata. The third project involves the organisation of a workshop series on multi-modal translanguaging involving sign languages and visual forms of communication, and is funded by the UCL Research Culture Award.

Teaching Summary
Language Development

Cognitive Psychology

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