English PhD students win awards at RSSC2021: An International Research Gathering

On 23rd of June 2021, we gathered online to celebrate the research carried out by Middlesex University researchers. 2021 marked the 10th year of the Research Students’ Summer Conference, with 120 presenters from research students and early career researchers from Middlesex overseas campuses, our Partner Institutions and our London campus.

More than 300 attendees and presenters registered for RSSC2021, from 29 countries. 32 prizes were presented by Dr Onatade to the best presentations and posters and the details of winners can be found here.

One of the prize winners for outstanding oral presentation was first year MPhil/PhD in English student Thanh Nguyen for her presentation on the ‘Effects of Metacognitive Reading Strategy Instruction on L2 Reading Comprehension and Motivation: A Meta-Analysis and An Empirical Investigation’. Congratulations also to second year MPhil/PhD in English student Thitinart Khamyod for her presentation: ‘From Verbal to Online Interactions: Requests in One-to-one Facebook Chats in Thai Educational Settings’ and to finalist PhD student Ramona Pistol for her presentation ‘Aesthetic experience in metaphorical comprehension’. Congratulations to all presenters and winners!

25 poster presentations and approximately 90 oral presentations were delivered, across three time slots of 8 parallel sessions each. It was a remarkable demonstration of the diversity of disciplines and the multidisciplinarity or research projects carried out in MDX Research Community: sports science, psychology and psychotherapy, English, performing arts, natural sciences, computer science, business and management, law and criminology, covid-19 related studies, organisational theology and theological studies, design, engineering and mathematics and so much more that can be viewed in the RSSC2021 Programme and Book of Abstracts.    

Our Vice-Chancellor Prof Nic Beech delivered the opening keynote speech, setting out the position of research in the University’s strategy and in the years ahead. MDX professional doctorate alumna Dr Raliat Onatade, Group Chief Pharmacist and Clinical Director for Medicines Optimisation at NHS Barts trust – who played a central role in setting up pharmacy services at the NHS Nightingale – gave the closing address. Raliat was introduced by Prof Hemda Garelick and another engaging conversation followed her inspiring and thought-provoking speech.  She talked about her journey as a researcher: making the transition from being a medical professional to a doctoral student, her approach to translating academic research into effective practice, and giving advice to early career researchers from her experience.

Find more about RSSC2021 here.

2021 Virtual Graduation and Graduation Awards

On the 15th of June 2021 we celebrated (virtually) the graduation of our fantastic class of 2021.

We will of course have the opportunity to participate in a fully-fledged graduation ceremony in the future on campus and will get to wear your graduation gown. For this online celebration, however, there was no dress code, and everyone was invited to bring along a brightly coloured drink of their choice.

At the party, English, Creative Writing and Journalism programmes announced their graduation PRIZES for academic achievement and best project.

The English graduation award winners are:

Outstanding Academic Achievement in English: Jodie Louise Hammond

Best Independent Project in English: Marisa Sonay Pavli

Each prize comes with a certificate and a generous voucher.

Huge congratulations to the two deserving winners and all out great 2021 English graduates!

PRESENTING… THE ENGLISH REVIEW SERIES: MONSTERS!

BA English at Middlesex University is hosting the ‘English Review Series’ of monthly conversations on Monsters in cultural texts. Come and have a monster time with us chatting about popular culture! It’ll be fun. We’ll be talking tv, film, comics, the news and books (all different ‘cultural texts’).
All meetings can be accessed via Zoom: https://mdx-ac-uk.zoom.us/j/96567350722?pwd=L1Q3dVNOWkttWHhkSUtIZDM2ZkVuUT09

Topic: Monsters and fear3:30-4:30pm, Monday 19 October 2020, on Zoom

  • Why do different cultures have similar monsters?
  • What monsters are you scared of? Where did that fear first come from – listening to fairy tales? Watching something? Listening to the news and hearing about a serial killer?
  • Are you more scared of real monsters (like the serial killer Dennis Nilsen, played by David Tennant in a new series) or mythical monsters (like zombies)? But why?
  • Why is horror now a popular genre, when sales of horror (tv and film) were at rock-bottom in the 90s?

Topic: Witches – 3:30-4:30pm, 16 November 2020, on Zoom

  • Witches are wicked, right? What about Sabrina, Hermione, the good witch in The Wizard of Oz, and Maleficent?
  • How did the wicked witch come about, then?
  • Do any of us know anyone who’s a ‘white witch’?
  • Why are there so many UK witch groups on Facebook?·        

Topic: Vampires and devils –  3:30-4:30pm, 7 December 2021, on Zoom

  • Dracula in the novel and Hammer movies was Satanic, right? How come he’s a good guy in the 2013-14 tv show? And why are vampires goodies in True Blood, Buffy (sometimes) and Twilight?
  • Is the Dark Lord a sympathetic character in today’s world? But why?
  • Aren’t vampires just silly and made-up, or is there some real aspect to them?
  • Would you like to be immortal?

Topic: Zombies –  3:30-4:30pm, 18 January 2021, on Zoom

  • Why on Earth are zombies still popular?
  • Is it cos of covid?
  • Or immigration?
  • Are they still making The Walking Dead? Sheesh. How many series?

Topic: Werewolves and shape-shifters – 3:30-4:30pm, 15 February 2021

  • Is there a ravening beast hiding inside you?
  • Jekyll and Hyde is still popular. Why is that?
  • Why does every vampire series always end up with a bunch of werewolves as enemies?

Topic: Frankenstein and A.I.s – 3:30-4:30pm, 15 March 2021

  • Do the sciences of cloning and A.I. mean we are about to create a new Frankenstein? Is that really a good idea?
  • Are Pinocchio, The Blade Runner, Avengers: Age of Ultron, West World, etc, all the same story?
  • Is it horror, sci-fi or actually happening?

WANT TO PARTICIPATE? RESERVE YOUR PLACE FOR ONE OR MORE SESSIONS BY EMAILING DR ADAM DALTON (a.dalton@mdx.ac.uk) OR DR ANNA CHARALAMBIDOU (a.charalambidou@mdx.ac.uk)! YOU CAN ALSO RESERVE PLACES FOR FRIENDS!

BA English student profiles: Natalie Rose

Natalie Rose (third-year BA English student) describes her experience of studying at Middlesex:

Natalie Rose BA English.png“Being a student is about indecisiveness and experimentation. It’s about trying everything possible so that, once you graduate, you know exactly which path is right for you. It’s about figuring things out, and then changing your mind and having to figure it all out again.

English at Middlesex University epitomised this experience for me. The course was so widespread that not only did we journey through the depths of language, we uncovered the definitive rules of genre, and marvelled at the complexity and importance of literature, both old and new. Each topic covered was not only interesting to learn, but with each class it revealed to me something new I could be capable of. Every experiment was a test – could this be what my future is made up of? And each lesson learnt was an accomplishment, an experience I had gained, something new to push me over and beyond what other students from other universities had to show.

There is no one path selected for you at Middlesex. You are not bound to academia, to teaching, to linguistics. You have every available option spread out before you, and you learn how to excel in whichever of these options interest you most. Extra-curricular opportunities and dedicated, friendly lecturers mean that your education does not stop when you leave the classroom. There is no limit at this university to the things you can discover, only how much time you give yourself to try each new opportunity out.”

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Read Natalie’s outstanding romance, Disengaged that she wrote for her third-year module ‘Writing for Popular Markets’, taught by Adam Dalton.

Disengaged

Chapter One

All along the bar were shimmering, giggling girls falling over their half empty drinks while chatting to greasy looking guys. Unfortunately, Bree was one of them. I was pissed – tonight was meant to be our time.

Continue reading “BA English student profiles: Natalie Rose”