Professor Lawrence Zhang

PhD, MA (Hon), PGDipELT (Distinction), BA


Dr Lawrence Jun Zhang is Professor of Linguistics-in-Education (Applied Linguistics & TESOL) in the School of Curriculum and Pedagogy and Associate Dean (AD) International Partnerships for the Faculty of Education and Social Work. His research programme spans cognitive, linguistic, sociocultural and developmental factors in reading/ biliteracy development, critical reading awareness in language education, metacognition, self-regulated learning (SRL) and reading development in L1 and L2 contexts, bilingual/biliteracy acquisition and bilingual/biliteracy education in primary and secondary schools, and learning and teaching English as a second/foreign language at university settings, the effects of self-regulated reading and writing instruction on bilingual/biliteracy development, and teacher identity and cognition in language teacher education.

Dr Zhang was a Post-Doctoral Visiting Fellow (Applied Linguistics & Second Language Acquisition) at the University of Oxford Department of Education. He was the sole recipient of the TESOL Award for Distinguished Research 2010-2011 awarded by the TESOL International Association, USA, for his paper published in an SSCI-indexed journal of the field, TESOL Quarterly, 44(2), “A dynamic metacognitive systems perspective on Chinese university EFL readers.” As one of the leading scholars in the field of TESOL, he has served the profession as an editorial board member for several international SSCI-indexed journals, including TESOL Quarterly (Wiley), System: An International Journal of Educational Technology and Applied Linguistics (Elsevier), Applied Linguistics Review (de Gruyter), Metacognition and Learning (Springer), and Journal of Second Language Writing (Elsevier), as well as other international journals of repute: Writing and Pedagogy (Equinox), RELC Journal (Sage), and Chinese Journal of Applied Linguistics (de Gruyter). He has also been a frequently invited manuscript reviewer for leading journals in the field: Reading Research Quarterly, Review of Educational Research, Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development, Applied Linguistics, Modern Language Journal, Language Learning, Language Teaching, Foreign Language Annals,  English for Specific Purposes, Instructional Science, Research Papers in Education, Reading and Writing: An Interdisciplinary Journal, Asia Pacific Education Researcher, Asia Pacific Journal of Education, Language Teaching Research, European Journal of Psychology of Education, International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education, Journal of Early Childhood Literacy, Journal of Teacher Education, and Educational Psychology: An International Journal of Experimental Educational Psychology, Language, Culture & Curriculum,  Language Assessment Quarterly, and Assessing Writing, among others. In 2016, he was honoured with the recognition by the TESOL International Association (USA) with the award of  "50 at 50", which acknowledged "50 Outstanding Leaders" around the globe in the profession of TESOL when the Association celebrated its 50th anniversary in Baltimore, MD, USA. In March 2017, he was officially installed as a newly elected member of the Board of Directors of  the TESOL International Association witnessed by members at the annual general meeting during the 51st TESOL International Convention, 21–24 March 2017, Seattle, Washington, USA. He was Principal Investigator of a Singapore MOE-funded research project (200K NZD equivalent), Co-PI of three other MOE-funded projects (500K NZD). His most recent research grant is An Ethnographic Study of Chinese Scholars’ Experiences in Writing and Publishing Academic Works in English: An Intercultural Rhetoric Approach, RMB 200,000 or NZ$42,000), with Shanghai Maritime University professor Dr John Mu as the Principal Investigator (the National Social Sciences Fund of China) (April 2014 - April 2017). He is also the external collaborator on a project led by Principal Investigator Dr Kenneth Ong of Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, Mobile Education Networked Tutoring on Request (MENTOR) in Writing in English for Academic and Specific Purposes, a grant from the prestigious Singapore Millennium Foundation worth SGD671,250 (680,000 NZD equivalent) (July 2016 - July 2019).

Research | Current

Research Projects

Externally Funded Research Projects

Research Work/Reports Completed

Recent publications and conference papers/addresses


Postgraduate supervision

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) Research Theses Supervised to Completion at UoA

  • PhD - Kenneth K. W. Ong (graduated with PhD in July 2014, now Senior Lecturer, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore): Incidental EFL Vocabulary Learning through Codeswitched Reading Tasks. Co-supervisor: Professor Judy M. Parr (this thesis was short-listed for the Christopher Brumfit Best PhD/EdD Thesis Award 2015, through Language Teaching (journal), Cambridge University Press).
  • PhD - Sophie L. Teng (graduated with PhD in May 2016, now Research Fellow at Wolfe Fisher Research Centre, University of Auckland and Full Professor at Heilingjiang University, China):  Fostering Strategic Second-Language Writers: A Study of Chinese English-as-a-Foreign-Language (EFL) Writers’ Self-Regulated Learning Strategies, Self-Efficacy and Motivational Beliefs. Co-supervisor: Associate Professor Martin East.
  • PhD - Chengsong Yang (graduated with PhD in July 2016 ,now Lecturer at Xi'an Jiaotong University, China):  The Reactivity and Veridicality of Concurrent Verbal Reports in Second Language Writing. Co-supervisor: Professor Judy M. Parr.
  • PhD - Muhammad Rahimi (graduated with PhD in August 2016, now Adjunct Lecturer at University of Tehran, Iran): Task Complexity, Affective Factors, and Pre-task Planning: Effects on L2 Writing Production. Co-supervisor: Professor Judy M. Parr.
  • PhD - Paul P. Sun (graduated with PhD in August 2016, now Research Associate Professor at Sun Yat-Sen University, China): Chinese as a Second Language Learners’ Speech Competence and Speech Performance in Classroom Contexts: Cognitive, Affective, and Socio-Cultural Perspectives. Co-supervisor: Dr Susan M. Gray.
  • PhD - Hua Geng (graduated with PhD in April 2017, now Lecturer at Nanjing University, China ): The Effects of Written Feedback and Revision-focus Direction on Student Revision and Writing Improvement. Co-supervisor: Dr Rosemary Erlam, School of Cultures, Languages and Linguistics, Faculty of Arts.
  • PhD - Baker Q. Sun (graduated with PhD in July 2017, now Associate Professor at Henan Polytechnic University, China): An Exploratory Study of Chinese University English-as-a- Foreign-Language (EFL) Teachers’ Cognitions and Practices about English Grammar Teaching. Co-supervisor: Dr Constanza Tolosa.
  • PhD - Chunrong Bao (graduated with PhD in July 2017, now Lecturer at Jilin University, China): Methodology in Teaching Chinese to Speakers of Other Languages (TCSOL): Teachers’ Beliefs and Practices in Native and Non-native Chinese-speaking Contexts. Co-supervisor:  Associate Professor Helen Dixon & Dr Ruth Williams.
  • PhD - Shan Chen (graduated with PhD in Oct 2017, now Lecturer at Shandong University, China): A Study of Chinese University English-as-a-Foreign- Language (EFL) Teachers’ Beliefs, Practices and Identities. Co-supervisor: Professor Stuart McNaughton & Professor Judy M. Parr.
  • PhD - Mazlin Mokhtar (graduated with PhD in Dec 2017, now Lecturer at Politeknik Ungku Omar,  Malaysia): Patterns and Beliefs of Lecturers' Code-switching: An Inquiry into Malaysian Polytechnics English Language Classrooms. Co-supervisors: Dr Mei Lai, Dr Douglas Loveles and Dr Susan M. Gray.
  • PhD - Helen Yanhong Liu (graduated with PhD in Oct 2017, now Associate Professor at Yanshan University, China): College English Language Textbooks in China: A Corpus Linguistics Approach to Cultural Representations and Ideological Underpinnings. Main supervisor: Professor Stephen May.
  • PhD - Linlin Xu (graduated with PhD in Oct 2017, now Lecturer at Chongqing University of Posts and Telecommunication, China):  Students' Voices Becoming: Feedback Dialogues in Intercultural Doctoral Supervision. Main supervisor:  Associate Professor Barbara Grant.
  • PhD - Vincent Greenier (graduated with PhD in Dec 2017, now Visiting Professor at Pohang University of Science & Technology, Korea): Main supervisor: Associate Professor Tan Bee Tin, School of Cultures, Languages and Linguistics, Faculty of Arts.
  • PhD - Anne L. Jiang (graduated with PhD in Jan 2018, now Associate Professor at Northeast Normal University, China ): Main Supervisor: Professor Stephen May.
  • PhD - Christine P. Chang (graduated with PhD in Jan 2018, now Lecturer at Chongqing University, China): A Complex Dynamic Systems Theory Perspective on Learner Individual Differences in Second Language Listening Development. Co-supervisor: Professor Professor Judy M. Parr.
  • PhD - Tony Qin (graduating in April 2018): Metacognitive Perspectives on Learning to Write in English as a Foreign Language (EFL) in Multimedia Environments at the Tertiary Level in China. Co-supervisor: Associate Professor Richard Hamilton.

Ph.D. Theses Supervised for Overseas Universities, as Co-supervisor

  • PhD - Mehrdad Yousefpoori-Naem, Shahid Beheshti University, Iran (graduated with PhD in Sept 2016, now Adjunct Lecturer at Shahid Beheshti University, Iran), main supervisor: Associate Professor Sasan Baleghizadeh.
  • PhD - Eric Yuan, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong (graduated with PhD in Nov 2015, now Assistant Professor at Education University of Hong Kong), main supervisor: Professor Icy Lee.
  • PhD - Yao Yao, Hunan University, China, main supervisor: Professor Xiaoxiang Chen.
  • PhD - Liping Wang, Renmin University of China, China, main supervisor: Professor Hongyun Wu.
  • PhD - Xing Wei, Tsinghua University, China, main supervisor: Professor Wenxia Zhang.

Ph.D. Theses Supervised in the Past at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore

  • PhD - Justina Ong: Effects of Planning and Revising on Chinese EFL Learners’ Quality in Written Production (runner-up in 2010 for the Christopher Brumfit Best PhD/EdD Thesis Award, through Language Teaching (journal), Cambridge University Press) (now Lecturer at National University of Singapore, Singapore).
  • PhD - Qing Ni: Raising Student Awareness of the Quality of Translation through Linguistic Function Analysis: An Appraisal Study (now Lecturer at Ngee Ann Polytechnic, Singapore).
  • PhD - Steven Tan: English Reading Strategies of Primary Pupils in Multimedia-Mediated Environments: An Exploratory Factorial Study (now Research Fellow, National Institute of Education, Singapore).
  • PhD - Limei Zhang: Analysis of Reading Comprehension Processes and Strategies Used by Test-Takers in the College English Test –Band 4 in China: A Mixed-Methods Study (now Lecturer at Singapore Centre for the Chinese Language, MoE, Singapore).

MEd Theses to Supervised to Completion at UoA (60-point dissertation; 90-point and 120-point MEd-by-Research)

  • MEd - Katherine Huggard: Teachers' Attitudes towards Grammar and Their Pedagogical Practices in Delivering Written Language Programmes in Upper Primary Schools in New Zealand (graduated and Degree awarded 2015), Co-supervisor Mrs Maree Jeurissen (60-point dissertation)
  • MEd - Chao Zheng: A Comparative Study of Foreign Language Anxiety of Chinese First Year College Students in China and Those Learning in New Zealand (graduated and Degree awarded 2015), Co-supervisor Dr Kane Meissel (120-point research thesis)
  • MEd - Fei Teng: A Case Study of Teacher’s Questioning and the Follow-up Moves in a Chinese University English as a Foreign Language (EFL) Classroom (ongoing), Main supervisor Dr Christine Biebricher (90-point research thesis)
  • MEd - Junwei Wang:  A Dynamic View on Language Learner Anxiety (ongoing), Co-supervisor Dr Christine Biebricher (120-point research thesis)

Supervision to Completion of MA (Applied Linguistics), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore

  • MA Applied Linguistics - Carol Debarera: The Impact of Metacognitive Scaffolding and Monitoring on Reading Comprehension Tasks, graduated in 2012,  Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.
  • MA Applied Linguistics - Dayu Jiang: Analyzing the Effectiveness of Multimodal Courseware Design from the Perspective of Cognitive Load Theory, graduatd in 2012, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.
  • MA Applied Linguistics - Yi Zeng: An Investigation of Authority Construction through the Use of Reporting Clauses in Discussion Sections of Chinese Students’ MA Dissertations in Singapore and China, graduated in 2012, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.
  • MA Applied Linguistics - Sulasni Rahman: Effects of Metacognitive Strategic Reading Instruction on Primary School Pupils’ Reading Improvement, graduated in 2008, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.
  • MA Applied Lingusitics - Dongping Liu: An Evaluation of the Effectiveness of the Online Writing Assessment System in ETAS, graduated in 2007, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.
  • MA Applied Linguistics - Kenneth Ong: Functional-Lexical Code-Paired Norms of Mandarin-English Bilinguals, 2006, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.
  • MA Applied Linguistics - Fadila Binte Mohmed: Strategies in Reading Comprehension: Case Studies of Good and Poor Upper Primary School Readers, graduated in 2006, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.
  • MA Applied Linguistics - Jean Chen: Student Perspectives on Reticence in the ESL/EFL Classrooms: Comparing High and Low Proficiency PRC Tertiary Students, graduated in 2005,  Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.



Awards and Honours

Invited  Plenary Addresses

Invited Public Talks


Current: Service to University of Auckland, New Zealand
- School of Curriculum & Pedagogy Executive (Jan 2015 - present)
- University Discipline Committee, University of Auckland (Jan 2015 - Dec 2016)
- Senate, University of Auckland (Jan 2015 - present)
- Faculty Staffing Committee, Faculty of Education (Jan 2015 - present)
- Faculty Postgraduate Awards-subcommittee, Faculty of Education (Jan 2014 - Oct 2015)
- Faculty International Working Group, Faculty of Education (Jan 2013 - present)
- University International Committee, University of Auckland (Feb 2012 – Dec 2014)
- Faculty Postgraduate Committee, Faculty of Education (Feb 2012 -  Feb 2015)
- Faculty International Committee, Faculty of Education (Feb 2012 – Dec 2012)
- Faculty Education Committee, Faculty of Education (Feb 2012 – Dec 2012)
- Faculty Equity Committee, Faculty of Education (Feb 2012 – Feb 2013)
- Faculty Admissions Sub-Committee, Faculty of Education (Feb 2012 – Feb 2013)
- Faculty Research Committee, Faculty of Education (March 2012 – Dec 2012)

Previous: Service to National Institute of Education (NIE), Nanyang Technological University (NTU), Singapore
- Co-Chair, NIE’s Postgraduate Programs Core Team under the TE21 Implementation Program (2011-2012)
- Chair, English Language & Literature Seminar Committee (2005-2012)
- Chair, the 13th International Conference on English Language in Southeast Asia (ESEA 2008) Organizing Committee (2007-2008)
- Chair, Committee on the Development of the Advanced Diploma in English Language Study (2005-2006)
- Chair, English Language & Literature Academic Group’s Program Coordinators Committee (2004-2006)
- Advisor, Postgraduate Diploma in English Language Teaching Program (2000-2008)

- NIE’s Postgraduate Programs Core Team under the TE21 Implementation Program (2009-2010)
- NIE’s Academic and Administrative Systems Teaching Functions Committee (2008-2009)
- Organizing Committee of the International LangScape Conference 2006: Exploring Ways of Teaching English Language & Literature (2005-2006)
- ELL Academic Group’s Faculty Search/Hire Committee (April 2011-Feb 2012)
- ELL Academic Group’s Faculty Re-appointment Committee (Oct 2010-Feb 2012)
- NIE’s Head Search Committee appointed by Dean of Faculty Affairs of NIE for the Asian Languages and Cultures Academic Group (Feb 2011-Dec 2011)
- ELL Academic Group’s Research Ethics Committee (Jan 2011-Feb 2012)

External Service to the Ministry of Education, Singapore

- Consultant to the English Language Syllabus 2010 (Primary & Secondary (Express/ Normal [Academic])

Service to Other Institutions (Doctoral Thesis External Examiner)

- University of Canterbury, NZ
- University of Otago, NZ
- University of Waikato, NZ
- AUT University, NZ
- Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia
- Education University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR, China
- University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR, China
- Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
- Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia
- University of South Australia, Adelaide, Australia
- University of New South Wales, Australia
- University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia
- University of Western Australia, Crawley, Australia

Areas of expertise

  • Second language acquisition and learning / TESOL
  • Bilingual-biliteracy acquisition/learning
  • Cognitive manipulation on the quality of L2 writers' composition
  • Codeswitched texts for learning vocabulary and reading comprehension
  • Self-regulated learning (SRL) and metacognition in language learning
  • Vocabulary, reading, and writing development in children and adult learners
  • Pedagogical grammar and grammar pedagogy
  • Second and foreign language teaching and learning
  • Language teacher professional development
  • Teacher identity, cognition and change

Committees/Professional groups/Services

Service for International Refereed Journals as an Invited Editorial/Advisory Board Member



Service for Regional Refereed Journals as an Invited Editorial/Advisory Board Member

Service for International Refereed Journals as Invited Manuscript Reviewer/Referee

Service as an Invited Reviewer/Referee for Edited Volumes and Authored Books


Invited Reviewer for Professional Organisations

  • Invited Reviewer for Proposals to the AERA Annual Meeting: 2013, 2014, 2015, American Educational Research Association, USA.
  • Invited Reviewer for the BAAL Book Prize, British Association of Applied Linguistics (2008-2009), UK.
  • Invited Reviewer for Proposals, TESOL International Association's Annual Convention, USA: 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 (Toronto, Canada), 2016, 2017.
  • Invited Reviewer for Proposals, AILA (International Association of Applied Linguistics), 2008 (Germany), 2011 (China), 2014 (Australia).
  • Invited Reviewer for the LangScape Conference on Teaching English Language and Literature, 2006, Singapore.
  • Invited Reviewer for the  American Association for Applied Linguistics (AAAL) Annaul Meeting, USA: 2012, 2013, 2015 (Toronto, Canada), 2016, 2017. 
  • Invited Reviewer for the Symposium on Second Language Writing (SSLW), 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017.

Professional Association Memberships

Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

  • Yang, Y., Zhang, L. J., & Chen, L. (2018). Effects of recasts and form-focused instruction on the acquisition of novel vocabulary. Applied Linguistics Review, 0 (0).10.1515/applirev-2017-0084
  • Ong, K., & Zhang, L. J. (2018). The effects of code-switched reading tasks on late biliingual EFL learners’ vocabulary recall, retrention and retrieval. System: An International Journal of Educational Technology and Applied Linguistics, 72, 13-22. 10.1016/j.system.2017.10.008
  • Qin, L., & Zhang, L. J. (2017). An empirical study on Chinese tertiary student-writers’ use of metacognitive strategies in multimedia environments. Technology Enhanced Foreign Language Education, 175 (3), 28-36. Related URL.
  • Teng, L., & Zhang, L. J. (2017). Effects of motivational regulation strategies on writing performance: A mediation model of self-regulated learning of writing in English as a second/foreign language. Metacognition and Learning10.1007/s11409-017-9171-4
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Lin Teng
  • Wu, H., & Zhang, L. J. (2017). Effects of different language environments on Chinese graduate students' perceptions of English writing and their writing performance. System: An International Journal of Educational Technology and Applied Linguistic, 65, 164-173. 10.1016/j.system.2017.02.001
  • Zhang, L. J. (2017). Reflections on the pedagogical imports of western practices for professionalizing ESL/EFL writing and writing-teacher education. Australian Review of Applied Linguistics, 39 (3), 203-232. 10.1075/aral.39.3.01zha
  • Chen, C., & Zhang, L. J. (2017). An intercultural analysis of the use of hedging by Chinese and Anglophone academic English writers. Applied Linguistics Review, 8 (1), 1-34. 10.1515/applirev-2016-2009
  • Liu, B., Wang, Y., & Zhang, L. J. (2017). Effects of task type on planning and writing production in online EFL writing. Modern Foreign Languages, 40 (1), 102-113. Related URL.


Contact details

Office hours

8.30 am - 5.30 pm, Monday through Friday

Primary office location

Level 5, Room 559A
New Zealand

Web links