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Davies, Alan

  1. John C. Maher

Published Online: 5 NOV 2012

DOI: 10.1002/9781405198431.wbeal0310

The Encyclopedia of Applied Linguistics

How to Cite

Maher, J. C. 2012. Davies, Alan. The Encyclopedia of Applied Linguistics. .

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 5 NOV 2012


Professor Alan Davies, a founding father and major theorist of the field of applied linguistics, is Emeritus Professor of Applied Linguistics at the University of Edinburgh. Davies grew up in South Wales of Welsh- and English-speaking parents. His early linguistic experience provided an awareness of the reality and paradoxes of multilingualism, power, and the politics of language. After taking a degree in English at the University of Oxford and seven years as an English teacher in the UK and Kenya, he developed the English Proficiency Test Battery (EPTB) for the British Council at the University of Birmingham, where he was awarded a PhD on “Proficiency in English as a Second Language” (1965). He was appointed to a lectureship at Edinburgh University in 1965, has taught at universities in Nepal and Hong Kong, and in 1991 became founding Director of the Language Testing Research Centre at the University of Melbourne. He served as editor of Applied Linguistics and Language Testing. He was chair of the British Association of Applied Linguistics, Secretary-General of AILA, and President of the International Language Testing Association (ILTA). He was in 2003 the first recipient of a Lifetime Achievement Award presented by the University of Cambridge Local Examinations Syndicate and ILTA. In 2006 he was awarded a Leverhulme Emeritus Fellowship for a study entitled Native Speakers and Native Users.


  • assessment methods in applied linguistics;
  • ethics;
  • second language acquisition;
  • sociolinguistics;
  • assessment