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Jess Mason

Dr Jessica Mason BA, MA, PhD

Senior Lecturer in English Language


Jessica is an interdisciplinary researcher who specialises in linguistics and education. She completed her PhD at the Learning Sciences Research Institute (LSRI) and the School of English at the University of Nottingham. Her research focuses on the cognition and discussion of reading in different contexts, including school classrooms, book clubs, and online. In particular, Jessica studies how readers make intertextual connections between the different stories they read, hear, watch or experience over time. She is interested in how the texts we read, and our responses to them, can shape our identity.

  • About

    Jessica’s research spans stylistics, cognitive poetics, reader response and English education. Her current work focuses on applying concepts from cognitive linguistics to the education context, looking specifically at studying fiction in secondary school English. Jessica runs the final year undergraduate modules 'Exploring English Education' and 'Language, Learning and Wellbeing' and often works with trainee and practising teachers to support their professional development. In particular Jessica works with the National Association for the Teaching of English (NATE) who awarded her the ‘Terry Furlong Award for Research’ in 2015.

    Jessica’s research also focuses on the application of cognitive science to the understanding of literary reading (cognitive poetics). Her monograph, Intertextuality in Practice, explores how readers make and understand connections between stories. Jessica is particularly interested in the relationships between reading, education and identity.

  • Teaching

    English Language

    BA English
    BA English Language
    BA English Literature
    BA Creative Writing
    MA by Research (English)

    I currently teach on the following modules:

    • Exploring English Education;
    • Language, Learning and Wellbeing;
    • Reading and the Mind;
    • Politeness;
    • Creative Language Awareness;
    • Language and Style.
  • Research

    I am currently working on research exploring:

    • The language of conspiracy theorists;
    • Cognitive approaches to intertextuality;
    • The relationship between reading knowledge and preferences and identity, especially education contexts .
  • Publications

    Journal articles

    Mason, J. (2019). Making fiction out of fact: attention and belief in the discourse of conspiracy. Narrative Inquiry, 29 (2), 293-312.

    Giovanelli, M., & Mason, J. (2018). Reading, Readers and English. English in Education, 52 (1), 2-4.

    Mason, J., & Giovanelli, M. (2017). ‘What do you think?’ Let me tell you : discourse about texts and the literature classroom. Changing English, 24 (1), 318-329.

    Giovanelli, M., & Mason, J. (2015). 'Well i don't feel that': Schemas, worlds and authentic reading in the classroom. English in Education, 49 (1), 41-55.

    Book chapters

    Mason, J. (2019). Intertextuality in practice. In Linguistic Approaches to Literature. (pp. 1-201).

    Mason, J. (2016). Narrative interrelation, intertextuality and teachers’ knowledge of students’ reading. In Knowing About Language: Linguistics and the Secondary English Classroom. (First Edition). Routledge

    Mason, J. (2015). Narrative. In The Cambridge Handbook of Stylistics. (pp. 179-195).

  • Postgraduate supervision

    I welcome applications from research students interested in studying in the fields of cognitive poetics and stylistics, English education, reader response studies and discourses of conspiracy.

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