Professor Lawrence Jun Zhang

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

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Dr Lawrence Jun Zhang is Professor of Linguistics in Education (Applied Linguistics & TESOL) in the School of Curriculum and Pedagogy and Associate Dean International Partnerships for the Faculty of Education. 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 journals, including TESOL Quarterly, System: An International Journal of Educational Technology and Applied Linguistics, Applied Linguistics Review, Metacognition and Learning, Writing and Pedagogy, and RELC Journal. He has also been a frequently invited manuscript reviewer for leading journals in the field: Reading Research Quarterly, Review of Educational Research, Journal of Second Language Writing, Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development, Modern Language Journal, Language Learning, Language Teaching, Foreign Language Annals, System, 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, and Language, Culture & Curriculum,  among others. 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’ Cross-cultural Experiences in Writing and Publishing Academic Works in English: A Intercultural Rhetoric Approach, RMB 200,000 or NZ$41,000), with Shanghai Maritime University professor Dr John Mu as the Principal Investigator (National Social Sciences Foundation of China) (April 2014 - April 2017).

Research | Current

Research Projects

Externally Funded Research Projects

Research Work/Reports Completed

Recent publications and conference papers/addresses


Postgraduate supervision

Supervision of Doctoral Research Theses

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) Current at UoA, as Primary Supervisor

  • Kenneth Ong: Incidental EFL Vocabulary Learning through Codeswitched Reading Tasks, co-supervisor Professor Judy Parr (graduated July 2014)
  • Sophie Teng: Social-cognitive and Social-cultural Perspectives on Self-regulation: A Study of Chinese EFL Writers’ Self-regulatory Efficacy, Self-Regulated Learning Strategies and Motivation, co-supervisor Associate Professor Martin East
  • Triyoga Dhamautami: Exploring Critical Literacy in Indonesian EFL Students: Dialogic Feedback for Developing Arguments in Response to Environmental Texts, co-supervisor Dr Sue Gray
  • Chengsong Yang: Veridicality, Reactivity, and Usability of Metacognitive Verbal Reports in Second Language Learning: A Study of University EFL Writers, co-supervisor Professor Judy Parr
  • Baker Sun: Chinese University Teachers’ and Students’ Beliefs, Perceptions, and Practice in Grammar Teaching in ELT, co-supervisor Dr Constanza Tolosa
  • Paul Sun: A Study of the Correlation between Affective Factors and L2 Chinese Advanced-level Speakers’ Oral Performance, co-supervisor Dr Sue Gray
  • Mazlin Mokhtar: A Study of Code-switching amongst Technical Subject Lecturers in Malaysian Polytechnics, co-supervisor Dr Mei Lai
  • Scarlet Huang: Teacher Identity in Foreign Language Teaching: Professional Development for TESOL Teachers in China, co-supervisor Dr Margaret Kitchen
  • Chunrong Bao: Teachers’ Cultural Awareness and Its Influence on Student-Centred Classrooms: A Study of Chinese-as-a-Second-Language (CSL) Teachers in New Zealand, co-supervisors, Dr Ruth Williams & Dr Helen Dixon
  • Shan Chen: Exploring Effective EFL Teaching in Chinese Universities: Links between Teacher Knowledge and Practice, co-supervisor Professor Stuart McNaughton
  • Lan Zhou: An Appraisal Theory Perspective on the Effectiveness of English Language Learning and Teaching in China, co-supervisor Professor Stephen May
  • Muhammad Rahimi: Task Complexity in Second Language Writing Production, co-supervisor Professor Jan Gaffney
  • Tony Qin: Metacognition and EFL Writing in Multimedia Environments, co-supervisor Dr Richard Hamilton
  • Christine Chang: Self-regulation, Working Memory, Learner Strategies and Second Language Listening Development, co-supervisor Professor Judy Parr
  • Lori Gao: Dynamic Metacognitive Systems Perspectives on Developing Listening Skills in Students of English as a Foreign Language (EFL) in the Classroom, co-supervisor Dr Marek Tesar
  • Lily Wang: Exploring Affective Variables of Unsuccessful Chinese EFL Students at an American Middle School in China, co-supervisor Dr Natsuko Shintani
  • Candy Wang: Dynamic System Theory Perspectives on Programatic Development among Second Language Learners, co-supervisor Associate Professor John Read, Department of Applied Language Studies and Linguistics, Faculty of Arts
  • Xiao Wang: The development of Chinese EFL learners’ Self-esteem and English Oral Performance during Study Abroad in New Zealand, co-supervisor Dr Margaret Kitchen
  • Helen Zhao: Investigating Teacher Cognition in Foreign Language Writing Instruction, co-supervisor Dr Rebecca Jesson
  • Tingting Zhang: A Corpus Approach to Teaching Academic Writing, co-supervisor Dr Natsuko Shintani

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) Current at UOA, as Co-supevisor

  • Vincent Greenier: Exploring the Correlation between Creative Development and Second Language Acquisition through an Arts-Based Curriculum, Main supervisor Dr Tan Bee Tin, Department of Applied Language Studies and Linguistics, Faculty of Arts
  • Helen Liu:  College English Textbooks in China: A Corpus Linguistics Approach to Their Ideological Underpinnings, Pedagogical Principles, Linguistic Features and Teacher Attitudes,  Main supervisor Professor Stephen May  
  • Anne Jiang: Metacognition and Motivation in L2 Academic English Learning: A Longitudinal Study of Chinese Medical Students, Main Supervisor Professor Stephen May
  • Linlin Xu: Written Feedback on Academic Writing: A Study of Chinese Doctoral Students Writing in English as a Foreign Language, Main Supervisor Associate Professor Barbara Grant

PhD Past (Nanyang Technological University, Singapore)

  • 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)
  • Qing Ni: Raising Students’ Awareness of the Quality of Translation through Linguistic Function Analysis: An Appraisal Study
  • Steven Tan: English Reading Strategies of Primary Pupils in Multimedia-Mediated Environments: An Exploratory Factorial Study
  • Yuhang Wang: Assessing the Vocabulary Growth of Chinese EFL Learners
  • 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

MEd Current at UoA (MEd-by-Research 120-point Thesis)

  • Emily Wu: Researching Learner Anxiety in Foreign Language Learning: Expanding the Theoretical Bases (until Dec 2012)
  • Katherine Huggard: Teachers' Attitudes towards Grammar and Their Pedagogical Practices in Delivering Written Language Programmes in Upper Primary Schools in New Zealand (2014), Co-supervisor Maree Jeurissen
  • Chao Zheng: A Comparative Study of Foreign Language Anxiety of Chinese First Year College Students in China and Those Learning in New Zealand (2014), Co-supervisor Dr Kane Meissel

MA Past (Applied Linguistics), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore

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



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

Service to Other Institutions (Doctoral Thesis External Examiner)

- University of Otago, NZ
- Auckland University of Technology, NZ
- Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia
- Hong Kong Institute of Education, Hong Kong SAR
- Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
- Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia
- University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR
- University of South Australia, Adelaide, 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


  • SAAL Quarterly (Singapore Association for Applied Linguistics, Singapore), (Aug 2005 - Jan 2009)
  • TESOL Quarterly (Brief Reports and Summaries) (TESOL International Association, USA, Wiley-Blackwell), (Dec 2012 - present) (SSCI-indexed)

Invited Reviewer for Professional Organisations

  • American Educational Research Association (AERA), 2013, 2014)
  • Invited Reviewer for the BAAL Book Prize, British Association of Applied Linguistics (2008-2009)
  • Invited Reviewer for Proposals, TESOL International Association, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
  • Invited Reviewer for Proposals, AILA (International Association of Applied Linguistics), 2008, 2011, 2014
  • Invited Reviewer for the LangScape Conference on Teaching English Language and Literature, 2006

Professional Association Memberships


Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

  • Yang, CS, Hu, G, & Zhang, L. J. (2014). Second language research on recasts: A critical review in response to an ongoing debate. Chinese Journal of Applied Linguistics, 37 (4), 411-429. 10.1515/cjal-2014-0026
  • Zhang, L. J. (2014). A dynamic metacognitive systems perspective on developing academic writing skills: Writing across the genre and the curriculum. In H. P. Widodo, N. T. Zacharias (Eds.) Recent Issues in English Language Education: Challenges and Directions (pp. 161-179). Surakarta, Central Java, Indonesia: Sebekas Maret University Press.
  • Yang, C., Hu, G., & Zhang, L. J. (2014). Reactivity of concurrent verbal reporting in second language writing. Journal of Second Language Writing, 24 (1), 51-70. 10.1016/j.jslw.2014.03.002
  • Zhang, DL, Zhang, L. J., & Gao, XS (2014). RTI in Strategies-based Instruction (SBI) for Bilingual Students. Paper presented at 48th International Annual TESOL Convention, Portland, Oregon, USA. 26 March - 29 March 2014.
  • Zhang, L., Aryadoust, V., & Zhang, L. J. (2014). Development and Validation of the Test Takers’ Metacognitive Awareness Reading Questionnaire (TMARQ). The Asia-Pacific Education Researcher, 23 (1), 37-51. 10.1007/s40299-013-0083-z
  • Zhang, L. J. (2014). Writing in English as a Foreign Language: Effects of Cognitive Manipulation on Text Quality. Paper presented at 3rd Triennial International Writing Research Across Borders Conference (WRAB 2014), Paris, France. 17 February - 22 February 2014.
  • Dabarera, C., Renandya, W. A., & Zhang, L. J. (2014). The impact of metacognitive scaffolding and monitoring on reading comprehension. System: An International Journal of Educational Technolog and Applied Linguistics, 42 (1), 462-473. 10.1016/j.system.2013.12.020
  • Zhang, L. J., & Rahimi, M. (2014). EFL learners’ anxiety level and their beliefs about corrective feedback in oral communication classes. System: An International Journal of Educational Technology and Applied Linguistics, 42, 429-439. 10.1016/j.system.2014.01.012

Contact details

  • Media Contact

Office hours

8.30 am - 5.30 pm, Monday through Friday

Primary location

Level 5, Room 6EN-559A
Auckland 1023
New Zealand