Roberta Spelorzi (AFHEA)

PhD Linguistics & English Language

  • Linguistics and English Language
  • School of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences

Contact details



Room 1.15, Dugald Stewart Building

3 Charles Street, Edinburgh
Post code


Roberta Spelorzi is a PhD candidate in Linguistics and English Language at the University of Edinburgh. Her research focuses on adults bilingualism across the life span, specifically on first language change and second language acquisition. Through a psycholinguistic approach she investigates different populations, as attriters, language learners and heritage speakers. After her postgraduate degree in Education she has been promoting a multilingual approach teaching languages at different levels including Higher Education.

Roberta is an Associate Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (AFHEA), and she is currently completing a PGCert in Academic Practice (Higher Education).  As a member of Bilingualism Matters Centre she is involved with public engagement, promoting and delivering workshops and events for families and teachers. 

Undergraduate teaching

School of Philosophy, Psychology & Language Sciences

  • Second Language Acquisition (2017-18, 2019-20)
  • Linguistics and English Language 1A (2019-20)
  • First Language Acquisition (2020-2021)

School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures

  • Italian 1 and Foundation Italian 1 (2020-2021)

Edinburgh Futures Istitute

  • Currents: Understanding and addressing global challenges (2020-2021)

Postgraduate teaching

Centre for Open Learning - Languages for All

  • Teaching Fellow in Italian (2017 - present)

Research summary

Her research mainly focuses on the relationship between first language attrition and second language aquistion, targeting speakers of Italian and English using a multidisciplinary experimental approach.

Current research interests

Second Language Acquisition; Attrition; Language Change; Heritage Language and Bilingualism.

Past research interests

The impact of Multilingualism in the classroom.

Affiliated research centres

Conference details

  • 13th International Symposium on Bilingualism 2021, Warsaw, Poland -  10 July 2021- 'Generational attrition: first language attriters and heritage speakers on production of Italian clitic pronouns'


  • Conference on Multilingualism (COM) 2021, Konstanz, Germany - 'Optionality in generational attrition: Italian clitics pronouns in first language attriters and heritage speakers'


  • Learning & Teaching Conference 2021, University of Edinburgh - Curriculum as a site for transformation– Workshop: 'Rethinking participation for multilingual learners in hybrid teaching'


  • Learning for Citizenship – Supporting Migrant Students Through the Pandemic 2021, University of Nottingham - ‘Participation in distance learning: Promoting inclusive education in multilingual settings’


  • Barcelona Summer School on Bilingualism and Multilingualism 2017 - University Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona – Poster Presentation: ‘L1 Attrition and Second language acquisition: L1 accommodation correlated to L2 learning proficiency’