Skip to main content Accessibility help



Language Teaching announces the award of an essay prize which honours one of the founding editors of this journal.


The winner will receive a £500 credit to be used to purchase books available in the current Cambridge University Press catalogue.

The winning essay - revised where appropriate in line with referees’ comments - will be prioritised for publication in the first available issue of the journal. 

The winner will be nominated for a one-year period as a member of the Language Teaching Editorial Board and designated in all outlets of the journal as the “Christopher Brumfit Award Winner”. 

An official certificate will be issued to the winner by the journal and Cambridge University Press.


Write an essay which presents an argument of relevance to second/foreign language learning or acquisition.


An essay is not a research report, with its standard format of literature review, methodology, results, and conclusion.

What is required is something different.  Like all academic work, it should be rational and scholarly. The chosen topic should ideally be handled with aplomb, seeking to engage and entertain readers as well as inform them, and stimulate ideas. The essay might also reflect on, challenge, or question any number of ideas and assumptions. It may therefore be speculative, provocative, personal, or controversial.  Above all, it should be interesting.


1. The Prize will be awarded in open competition and only one entry is permitted per person. The competition is open to any early career scholar, defined as a registered student currently on a doctoral course not yet in possession of a doctoral degree, OR a post-doctoral scholar within five years of the award of the doctorate at the time of submission. 

2. Together with their essay file, authors must enclose a scanned letter on official notepaper from their supervisor, or from a person of similar academic standing, attesting to their status. Authors must also attest that the submission is their work, not published elsewhere and not currently submitted to any other publication. The essay must not have been submitted to this or any other essay competition in previous years. Any form of plagiarism will result in automatic disqualification.

3. Essays should be a maximum length of 4000 words INCLUDING references. 

4. Essays should be presented in English, in a pdf or MS Word file, and APA format. 

5. The closing date for submissions is 30 November 2021. Submissions and status letters should be sent as file attachments in an email to the Editor of Language Teaching, Essays should not present any author information. 

6. All entries will be acknowledged and initially read in-house before short-listing. Unfortunately, we do not have the capacity to provide feedback on unsuccessful entries. 

7. In awarding the prize, the Editorial Board will also take into consideration the originality of the submitted paper and the theoretical and/or empirical contribution it makes to the discipline. 

8. The prize will be awarded by Cambridge University Press and Language Teaching on the recommendation of the referees formed from the Editorial Board of the journal. Shortlisted candidates will be informed by 15 February 2022, with the winner announced on the journal website by 15 March 2022. The Board’s decision is final. If no submission is judged suitable, the prize will not be awarded. 

9. The Editor may also commission for publication in Language Teaching any entries that are highly commended by the referees.