Francis M. Hult

Professor – TESOL

Graduate Program Director, TESOL
Office: Sondheim, Room 301-K


Research Interests

Educational linguistics, Language Policy and Planning, Linguistic Landscapes, Multilingual Education, Sustainability, and Transdisciplinarity





Francis M. Hult works at the crossroads of education, discourse studies, and sociolinguistics. Growing up bilingual in a Swedish-American family, his personal experience with bilingualism and transnationalism led him to a career in language studies. He earned his master’s degree in TESOL and French education at New York University, where he also received his bachelor’s degree, and a PhD in educational linguistics from the University of Pennsylvania. Hult’s research focuses on multilingualism in policy and practice, investigating ideological dimensions of national language policies, policy formation and implementation, language teacher engagement with educational policy discourses, and visual language use in multilingual communities. He has been recognized for his work in these areas with the Early Career Award of Merit and the William E. Arnold Award from the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education, a Language Learning Distinguished Scholar-in-Residence appointment at the University of Calgary Language Research Centre, and a Charles A. Fergusson Fellowship at the Center for Applied Linguistics. His books include the Handbook of Educational Linguistics (with Bernard Spolsky), Directions and Prospects for Educational Linguistics, and Research Methods in Language Policy and Planning (with David Cassels Johnson).

He has been active for many years with pre- and in-service teacher education in the United States and Sweden, having taught courses on topics such as TESOL methods, grammar, educational sociolinguistics, and practitioner research as well as conducted field supervision. He has also supervised and examined doctoral dissertations on language policy, linguistic landscaping, and multilingual/multicultural education and taught on international doctoral courses in Germany, Norway, and Sweden.

A frequent guest researcher in Asia, Europe, and North America, Hult has been a UNESCO senior visiting scholar and a visiting researcher/professor at a variety of universities such as the National Institute of Education in Singapore, the Education University of Hong Kong, and the University of Birmingham MOSAIC Centre for Research on Multilingualism. Drawing upon his research, he has consulted for a number of organizations including the Language Council of Norway, the Swedish Agency for Education, the Swedish Agency for Special Needs Education and Schools, and the United Nations. He sits on the editorial boards of several journals and is a member of the advisory committee for the international Language Policy Research Network. Since 2010, he has served as editor of the Educational Linguistics book series (Springer), and he has been co-editor of the Contributions to the Sociology of Language book series (De Gruyter) since 2015.