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Marie Jensen

Marie Jensen Northumbria UniversityBiography

Originally from Denmark, Marie moved to the UK for the first time in 2002 where she lived and worked in Northumberland for a year and a half. It was during this time she was first exposed to the wonderful varieties of English and she immediately took a keen interest in language variation. In 2003, she began an undergraduate degree at the Aarhus University in Denmark, focusing her work on diachronic change in and sociolinguistic approaches to variation in English. Following her BA, she immediately enrolled in a two-year MA course in English at Aarhus University but took a year out half way to study for a Master’s Degree at Newcastle University. After a rewarding stay in Newcastle, she returned to Denmark and finished her degree at Aarhus University. The topic of both her Master’s dissertations was diachronic change in Tyneside English investigated using variationist sociolinguistic methodology. Upon completion of her second MA degree, she taught a range of undergraduate modules (including English phonetics and phonology, English grammar, semantics and pragmatics, academic research methods, business English, and quantitative methods in media) at a variety of academic institutions in Denmark (including Aarhus University, Aarhus School of Business, and University of Southern Denmark). When offered a place as a PhD student at Northumbria University she immediately accepted and returned to the UK and the North East for the third time and is continuing her work on Tyneside English.


BA, English and Linguistics, Aarhus University, Denmark, 2006
MA, English Language and Linguistics, Newcastle University, UK, 2008
cand.mag (MA equivalent), English, Aarhus University, Denmark, 2009


Salience in Language Change – a socio-cognitive study of Tyneside English

The project is driven by an underlying interest in how the mind allows for language variation and how the social impacts on the cognitive. To be specific, it investigates the role of salience or language awareness in morphosyntactic change in Newcastle upon Tyne from a mainly sociolinguistic perspective with some overlap with social psychology and cognitive linguistics. The topic is investigated using a wide variety of empirical methods (corpus analyses using R, task-based questionnaires, attitudinal questionnaires, qualitative interviews) in order to capture the complex nature of language variation. Furthermore, in the process an empirically-based definition of the complex concept of salience will be attempted from the perspective of socio-cognitive linguistics which allows for the crucial unification of structural, sociolinguistic, and psychological aspects of language and language change. The results of the studies which form part of the thesis are discussed in light of the theories of social indexicality and the enregisterment of local speech forms.


Ewa Dabrowska (Main)
Robert McKenzie
Philip Wallage

Contact details

Faculty of Arts, Design & Social Sciences
Northumbria University
The Glenamara Centre
Lipman Building, room 127
Newcastle upon Tyne

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