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David Wright Web

David Wright

Senior Lecturer

School of Arts & Humanities

Staff Group(s)
English, Culture and Media


David Wright is a forensic linguist and Senior Lecturer in Linguistics at NTU in the English, Communications and Philosophy department in the School of Arts and Humanities.

He is an active member of the School's Centre for the Study of Inequality, Culture and Difference. His research applies methods of corpus linguistics and discourse analysis in forensic contexts and aims to help improve the delivery of justice using language analysis. His research spans across a range of intersections between language and the law and justice, language in crime and evidence, and discourses of abuse, harassment and discrimination. He publishes in international journals and regularly presents at international conferences and invited lectures.

He teaches on a range of undergraduate Linguistics modules and supervises postgraduate research students. He is Module Leader for:

  • LING102 Introduction to Language and Linguistics
  • LING207 Applying Methods in Linguistics
  • LING215 Discourse Analysis
  • LING310 Forensic Linguistics

In addition, he teaches on the modules:

  • LING101 Language in Context
  • LING391 Undergraduate Linguistics Dissertation.

He also supervises dissertations in MA Linguistics (by research) and PhD students. He is happy to receive MA/PhD applications and proposals in any area of forensic linguistics, corpus linguistics, or discourse analysis.

David’s teaching has been recognised by a number of awards and nominations:

  • 2018-19  Shortlisted for Nottingham Trent Student Union’s award for Outstanding Teaching in Arts and Humanities
  • 2016-17  Won Nottingham Trent University Vice-Chancellor’s Teaching Award
  • 2016-17  Won Nottingham Trent University Vice-Chancellor’s Outstanding Teacher Award
  • 2015-16  Shortlisted for Nottingham Trent Student Union’s award for Outstanding Teaching in Arts and Humanities.

In addition to his research and teaching responsibilities, David has been Year 1 Course Tutor for Joint Honours Humanities since 2018.

Career overview

Dr Wright joined Nottingham Trent University as a lecturer in linguistics in September 2014, having completed his BA, MA and PhD at the University of Leeds.

Research areas

Dr Wright’s current research projects span across a range of areas in forensic linguistics, corpus linguistics and discourse analysis, including:

  • Forensic Authorship Analysis
  • Empirical explorations of idiolect
  • Street Harassment of Children
  • Incitement of Violence Against Women Online
  • The language of advocacy
  • The ‘voice’ in law and evidence
  • Discourses of power and institutions

External activity

External examining

  • 2016–2020: External examiner for the BA English Language and Communication programme at Oxford Brookes University.

Journal editorships

  • 2016–present: Book reviews editor for Language and Law (Linguagem e Direito)
  • 2014–2016: Section Editor for Corpus Linguistics for Open Linguistics (De Gruyter)
  • 2013–2014: Editor of Leeds Working Papers in Linguistics and Phonetics


  • David has reviewed articles for the International Journal of Speech Language and the Law (Equinox), the International Journal of Corpus Linguistics (Benjamins), Digital Scholarship in the Humanities (OUP), The International Journal of Evidence and Proof (SAGE), Language and Law (Linguagem e Direito), Journal of Corpora and Discourse Studies (Cardiff), Critical Discourse Studies (Taylor & Francis), Corpora (EUP), English Today (CUP), Language and Literature (SAGE) and The Encyclopedia of Applied Linguistics (Wiley).
  • Reviewed book/series proposals or manuscripts for Cambridge University Press, Routledge, Palgrave, Polity Press and Bloomsbury.
  • Reviewed research grant applications for The British Academy and The Austrian Science Fund (FWF).
  • Reviewed conference abstracts for the British Association for Applied Linguistics (BAAL), the Germanic Society for Forensic Linguistics (GSFL) and Critical Approaches to Discourse Analysis Across Disciplines (CADAAD).

Professional memberships

  • 2019–present: Committe Member of BAAL Corpus Linguistics Special Interest Group, Meetings Secretary (2019-2022)
  • 2016: Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (HEA)
  • 2013–present: Member of the International Association of Forensic Linguists (IAFL)
  • 2015–present: Member of British Association for Applied Linguists (BAAL)

Sponsors and collaborators

  • 2020-2023: Co-Investigator - Nuffield Foundation. ‘Mapping the Changing Face of Cross-Examination in Criminal Trials’ (£328,631).
  • 2019-2022: Co-Investigator - Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC). ‘Improving Voice Identification Procedures’ (IVIP) (£872,120).
  • 2017-18: Principal Investigator - BA/Leverhulme Small Research Grant. ‘The incitement of violent offences against women in online discussion forums’ (£9,721)
  • 2017-18: Co-Investigator - NTU Safety and Security Fund. ‘Methods of assessing the accuracy of accent judgements by lay listeners’. (£13,282).
  • 2017: £877 from ESRC to hold ‘Street Harassment of School Students: awareness and risk’ event as part of ESRC Festival of Social Science 2017(Co-applicant).
  • 2016: £1,500 from BAAL and Routledge Research Development Workshop fund to hold ‘Language and identity in Law and Evidence’ event at NTU.
  • 2016: £19,851 from NTU Health and Wellbeing Proof of Concept Fund for project entitled ‘TASC11to16' (Taking A Stand for Change for secondary school children aged eleven to sixteen years), an interdisciplinary project across linguistics, psychology, law, education and social work (Co-investigator).
  • 2011–2014: £51,966 Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) Doctoral Studentship.
  • 2010–2011: £12,956 Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) Research Preparation Master’s Studentship.

Press expertise

David is able to offer comment on forensic linguistics; language of the law and legal process; language and crime, language and justice.

Course(s) I teach on

  • Student in Library
    Postgraduate research | Full-time / Part-time | 2020