The academic field of linguistics is hardly something that leaps to front of Aussie minds when thinking of sources of national pride. But based on the scorecards handed out to Australian universities this week, it really seems like Australia is punching well above its weight in linguistic research.
The Excellence in Research in Australia (or ERA) scores for 2010 were released earlier this week. They rank how Aussie universities perform in various fields of research. Looking at how Aussie unis did in Linguistics, we are actually doing really well. Two unis scored 5 (ANU and University of Melbourne) meaning they are performing “well above world standard”. Another four universities are performing “above world standard” and were given a rating of 4. Those four universities are: Latrobe, Macquarie, Monash and University of Queensland.
Good news for linguistics in Australia and for the Arts and Social Sciences in general.
Now we just have to keep trying to transfer the linguistic knowledge brought about by our brilliant research to Australia in general, which tends to be woefully monolingual, ignorant of other languages, has no discernible language policy and has overseen/oversees the extinction of a few hundred Australian languages!
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