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Birgit Smith supervises 1 postgraduate research students. If these students have produced research profiles, these are listed below:

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Dr Birgit Smith

Director of Language Studies

Birgit Smith

Lancaster University

Bowland North



Tel: +44 1524 592466

PhD supervision

I am currently co-supervising a student working on the cultural impact of Buffy the Vampire Slayer in the English and German-speaking world.

Current Teaching

  • GERM 100: German Language/grammar
  • GERM 101: German Language/grammar
  • GERM100/101: German in Context: Germany post reunification (block)
  • GERM 200: German Language: oral and aural skills
  • GERM 300: German Language: oral and aural skills
  • GERM301: German Language: translation into German
  • GERM233: German Identity formation: 1960/70: Spiegelaffäre, RAF 
  • DELC 214: Economic and Social Change in France, Germany and Spain since 1945
  • DELC 310: Year Abroad
  • DELC 320: Dissertations


Director of Language Studies

Head of Department (September 2013 - 2016)

Acting Head of Department (Jan-July 2011)

Chair of DELC Language Committee

Co-ordinator for German Language

Residence Abroad Tutor (German)


'Teaching Translation for A-level' This event will inspire teachers who teach translation within the new A-level language syllabus. We will be investigating theories of translation and then apply these to a number of different text genres in Chinese, French, German and Spanish. 

Date: Wednesday 18th April 2018


'Studying Languages through Film' The Department of Languages and Cultures will be holding a Film Event for Sixth Form students. Going to the movies can enhance a student’s understanding of languages and cultures. Students will learn the basic tools and language of film analysis to use when they talk about films. Films are a valuable tool to increase motivation for learning to communicate in another language.

We will be exploring:

French - Les Garçons et Guillaume à Table! Guillaume Galienne, France, 2013.

German – Good Bye Lenin, Germany 2003.

Spanish – Pan’s Labyrinth, Spain/Mexico 2006.

Date: Wednesday 10th January 2018


German Essay Writing for Film (Good Bye Lenin) for Year 13 pupils
This event focuses on a popular film studied by A2 students. The workshop will include the following elements: structuring an essay, arguing and illustrating a point, focusing on characters, themes and director's style, building a phrase bank to discuss films, learning film technology.
Date: 22th March 2016
German Essay Writing for Film (Good Bye Lenin) for Year 13 pupils
This event focuses on a popular film studied by A2 students. The workshop will include the following elements: structuring an essay, arguing and illustrating a point, focusing on characters, themes and director's style, building a phrase bank to discuss films, learning film technology.
Date: 24th March 2015 

European Year of Remembrance 2014 - taster day for sixth form students of modern languages

Date: 23 September 2014 Time: 9.45-14.00


Languages Enrichment Event (7th January 2016)  (8th January 2015)  (9th January 2014) (1st July 2014)

Aimed at year 8 pupils, the event is designed to motivate language learners and encourage them to carry on with their languages to GCSE level. Research shows that the events improve uptake at GCSE by 24%. We will use language tasters and cultural activities in French, German, Spanish, Italian and Chinese languages to encourage the learning of languages generally.

Date: 9th January + 1st July 2014 Cost per pupil: £4 / Free for Widening Participation (WP) schools.

The event is only open to schools where languages are not compulsory. Priority will be given to schools who have not attended a Language  Enrichment Event in previous years.

Please see the Routes into Languages Day for more details: https://www.routesintolanguages.ac.uk/north-west/events/3380


Languages NoW! 

Languages NoW events have now been replaced by Language Enrichments Events under the Routes into Languages umbrella.


13th January 2013

19th December 2011

The Universities of Bolton, Central Lancashire, Chester, Edge Hill, Lancaster, Liverpool, Liverpool John Mores, Manchester, Manchester Metropolitan and Salford have recently formed the North West University Language Alliance (NWULA), with the support of the Regional Languages Network North West. The purpose of the group is to cooperate with regard to outreach work to schools in areas which are not directly linked to our own recruitment, but which are focussed on general promotion of language learning to young people in the region. We realise that we are often duplicating each others' efforts and that working together we have more possibility of creating an impact regionally.

We are staging events, entitled Language NoW! for Year 8/9 pupils. The first NWULA Languages NoW event took place at Chester University, the second one at Lancaster University in December 2007 followed by an event on July 2010 hosted by the University of Salford. Events also took place on 19th December 2011 at Chester University and 13th January 2012 at Edge Hill University.

The events are workshops including taster classes in new languages,andcommunicative classesin the languages that the pupils are learningand workshops on employability including meeting university alumni to hear of their experiences with languages. There will also be a market place where pupils can enjoy different cultural activities ranging from Samba dancing to Calligraphy.

31. March 2011

Language and Culture Day! The purpose of this event is to encourage year 8 and 9 pupils to use Modern Languages in a fun way, with the hope that it will inspire them to carry on learning languages to a higher level. The event should give pupils the opportunity to use the language skills they have learnt whilst at school, whilst also introducing them to new languages. Pupils will also get the opportunity to meet Lancaster University languages students whilst visiting . As well as focusing on language elements of the culture will also be explored.

Additional Information

Recent publications/papers:

Tackling German Gramar - Fehlerschwerpunkte bei englischsprachigen Studenten, DAAD Jahrestagung, 9-11 December 2009, Cumberland Lodge.

Intercultural learning across the net, CILT, Languages in Higher Education conference: transitions and connections, 8-9 July 2008, York.

Lancaster-Graz Intercultural web project: a preliminary report, Smith, B. & Mercer, S. (2005) ELT News Number 52 , pp.21-25.

Review of Altendorfer, O. (2004) Das Mediensystem der Bundesrepublik Deutschland, vol. 2 . VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften, in Debatte, 2005 , vol 12 , No. 2.

Research Issues in the Year Abroad, P.Payne and B. Smith (eds), (1998) Crile Working Papers.

'Presse in der ehemaligen DDR', 'Werbung', 'Medien im Wandel' in J.P. Payne, (1997, 2001) Zeitungen in der Bundesrepublik Deutschland , German Studies 'Vorsprung' Series.

'Cy-Tor German: Computer corpora in language teaching' in Lancaster Companion to German Language Learning , (1999) German Studies.

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