Two Assistant/PhD Positions in English Linguistics for independent teaching (two hours per week at BA level, starting out with the Introduction to English Linguistics course)

Established in 1887, the English Department is not only the oldest, but also the largest English department in Switzerland and one of the larger departments in the German-speaking part of Europe. With almost 1,000 students and a total staff of over 50, we offer Bachelor, Master and PhD programs, and are committed to high standards in research and teaching. We invite applications for two Assistant/PhD positions (60%) at the Chair for English Linguistics (Prof. Simone E. Pfenninger).

Your responsibilities

Your work duties include independent teaching (two hours per week at BA level, starting out with the Introduction to English Linguistics course), individual research leading toward a PhD (either a scholarly monograph or a cumulative thesis) and collaboration in various research projects, including conference/summer school organization, participation in internal networks, contribution to the preparation of funding proposals and applications to external bodies, and project administration.

Your profile

You have an excellent MA degree (completed or near completion) in English/English
Linguistics, preferably including courses on second language acquisition, multilingualism and psycholinguistics. Successful candidates have or will develop a strong research profile in the field of SLA, specifically but not exclusively with regard to inter-and intra-learner variation across the lifespan, and contribute to the department’s profile through high-quality publications, presentation of papers at conferences and workshops, as well as participation in public engagement events to disseminate research (citizen science). You are a team player and interested in joint research and publication activities – but you also have flexibility and initiative in working independently with students and staff. You are proficient in verbal, written, and interpersonal communication in English and have outstanding organizational skills and the ability to manage multiple priorities and timelines.

What we offer

We offer two assistant/PhD positions with a workload of 60% each (initially limited to a three year period, with possible extension for up to 3 three years, salary according to canton regulations), allowing successful candidates to develop and strengthen their research profile. The English Department offers an attractive, cooperative work environment with good infrastructure in an international, stimulating environment. In our new SLA team, we welcome applications from students who have already developed, or have an interest in, a particular research project as well as students who would like to conduct their own original research that is derived from their advisor’s research. While teaching and administration are conducted in English at the department, this is not the case in university administration, and candidates are strongly encouraged to have competence in German or to acquire a working knowledge of German in the first two years. Diversity and inclusion are important to us.

Place of work

Englisches Seminar, Plattenstrasse, Zürich, Switzerland

Start of employment

Start of employment: 1 August 2022.
Applications must be submitted in a single PDF document by 15 April 2022 and should include:

  • a cover letter outlining how you meet the requirements of the post
  • a short CV with copies of certificates
  • contact information for two references
  • short sketch of proposed PhD project (if available)

Further information

Prof. Dr. Simone E. Pfenninger 


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