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CEETA 2019

2 December 2018

4th Colloquium on Empirical Evidence and Theoretical Assumptions

as part of the, 29th European Functional Linguistics Conference (ESFLC)

3rd to 5th July 2019 in Leiria, Portugal


SFL has a rich history of describing discourse and linguistic phenomena through the interpretive lenses provided by its theoretical perspectives. However, such descriptions do not always become predictive models that can be tested. In a sense, SFL addresses the semiotic potential of a language rather than what happens within and between individuals during language processing and production, meaning that, although it is a model of language use, it has no explicit model for language in use. Even in the numerous SFL studies of linguistic variation on the supra-individual level (register, genre), empirical methodologies receive little attention. Furthermore, SFL has only engaged to a limited extent with other models or research paradigms whose evidences might support, challenge, or expand SFL theoretical positions. This colloquium has the aim of providing a dedicated forum for discussion of theoretical claims, their representations in models, and the relevant evidences. Experimental and theoretical submissions framed in models other than SFL are also welcome if they address one or more of the areas below.


Paper topics:

Following the first three colloquia (Salzburg 2016, Salamanca 2017, Pavia, 2018), we invite abstract submissions which address one (or more) of the three areas listed below:

  1. Theory: What constitutes a relevant research topic and topics addressing the nature of linguistic investigation, e.g.:
  • While many questions may be relevant for the study of language, which of these questions are open to empirical investigation?
  • To what extent do process questions integrate with (social-semiotic) system based models?
  1. Empirical evidences: topics addressing what counts as relevant data, e.g.:
  • Which types of data are representative for which types of research questions?
  • How can we evaluate the reliability of our findings based on the quality of the data and its relation to the underlying population?
  1. Interpretation and Theoretical Development, e.g.:
  • How can/should we interpret data that may involve multiple layers of inference and what are the theoretical implications?
  • How can/should we interpret data ensembles resulting from data triangulation?
  • How can/should empirical evidence challenge theoretical assumptions and models?


Submission Guidelines – Deadline: Friday 25th January 2019

Abstracts must follow the general conference abstract submission guidelines and must also clearly include:

  1. CEETA colloquium’ at the top of your submission together with the most relevant topic area listed above (1, 2 or 3)
  2. Your abstract must explain how your contribution relates to at least one of the three above mentioned areas.


Abstracts will be reviewed during the normal reviewing process for ESFLC 2019. Submissions to the colloquium which are not accepted for the colloquium will automatically be considered for the main conference. See for details on how to submit.