Dr Aek Phakiti

Senior Lecturer in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL)


Phone: +61 2 9351 6312

Fax: +61 2 9351 2606

Building.Room: A35.816

Research interests

Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages

  • English for academic purposes
  • Second language acquisition


strategic competence, metacognition, second language reading, language testing and assessment, second language acquisition, research methods

Professional biography

Aek completed his PhD in Applied Linguistics from the University of Melbourne in 2005. His PhD thesis examined the relationships of state-trait cognitive, metacognitive and affective strategy use to EFL reading comprehension test performance through the use of a structural equation modeling approach.

Aek lectures in second-language acquisition, language testing and assessment and research methods in language learning in the MEd program in TESOL. He is co-editor of “Continuum Companion to Research Methods in Applied Linguistics” (Continuum, 2010), with Brian Paltridge. Aek is currently working on 2 books: "Experimental Research Methods in Language Learning" to be published by Continuum; and with Carsten Roever (University of Melbourne), "Quantitative methods for second language research: A problem-solving approach" to be published with Routledge.

With Carsten Roever (University of Melbourne), Aek was a guest editor of Language Assessment Quarterly, on "Currents issues and trends in language assessment in Australia and New Zealand (Vol 8/2, 2011). Aek has published his research in the journals Language Testing, Language Learning, Language Assessment Quarterly and RELC Journal, to name a few. Aek was a visiting scholar at The University of Hawaii at Manoa, USA.


  • Faculty of Education and Social Work Teaching Excellence Award 2010

  • TOEFL Outstanding Young Scholar Award 2010

Professional and community roles

Current projects

  • WIDA Project: English Language Proficiency and Mathematics Achievement of English Learners in US States. Research Team: H. Gary Cook, Rosalie Grant, University of Wisconsin - Madison and Aek Phakiti, The University of Sydney
  • Taylor's College Funded Research Program on "Factors affecting academic performance of non-English background graduates from the University of Sydney Foundation Program studying at the University of Sydney" Recipients: Aek Phakiti, Lindy Woodrow and David Hirsh.
  • TOEFL COE research grant on "Research Synthesis on the use of feedback for teaching academic writing from automated essay scoring". Recipients: Brian Paltridge, Aek Phakiti, Marie Stevenson, Lindy Woodrow.

Current research students

Project title Degree Research student
Dynamic Development of Complexity, Accuracy, and Fluency Measures in ESL Academic Writing PhD . Rosmawati
The effects of listening strategy instruction on English as a Foreign Language students in Vietnam. PhD Nga Ngo
The effectiveness of assessment of language knowledge and skills acquired in Project-based learning English language classrooms PhD Olga Mhilli
The effectiveness of written corrective feedback on explicit and implicit grammatical knowledge of university-level learners in an EFL context PhD Tiefu Zhang
Test taking strategies in a simulated IELTS speaking module MEd (Research) Christina Judy

Selected publications


  • Phakiti, A. (in press). Experimental research methods in language learning. London: Continuum (to appear in 2013).
  • Paltridge, B, and A. Phakiti. (eds). (2010). Companion to Research Methods in Applied Linguistics. London: Continuum.
  • Paltridge, B., Harbon, L., Hirsh, D., Shen, H., Stevenson, M., Phakiti, A. & Woodrow, L. . (2009). Teaching Academic Writing: An introduction for teachers of second language writers. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press..
  • Phakiti, A. (2007). Strategic Competence and EFL Reading Test Performance : A Structural Equation Modeling Approach. Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang.

Book chapters

  • Phakiti, A. (in press). Questionnaire development and analysis. In A. Kunnan, (Ed.), Companion to language assessment (Volume 3) London: Wiley-Blackwell. (to appear in 2013).
  • Phakiti, A. (2010). Analysing quantitative data. In B. Paltridge. & A. Phakiti. (Ed.), Continuum companion to research methods in applied linguistics (pp. 39–49), London: Continuum.
  • Phakiti, A. (2007). On the nature of L2 test-takers’ calibration in a reading test. In C. Gitsaki (Ed.), Language and Languages: Global and Local Tensions (pp. 218–235), Newcastle, UK: Cambridge Scholars Publishing.

Journal articles

  • Phakiti, A. & Roever, C. (2011). Current Issues and Trends in Language Assessment in Australia and New Zealand. Language Assessment Quarterly, 8(2), 103–107.
  • Phakiti, A. & Li, L. (2011). General Academic Difficulties and Reading and Writing Difficulties among Asian ESL Postgraduate Students in TESOL at an Australian University. RELC Journal, 42(3), 226–262.
  • Phakiti, A. (2008). Predicting NESB International Postgraduate Students’ Academic Achievement: A Structural Equation Modeling Approach. International Journal of Applied Educational Studies, 3(1), 18–38.
  • Phakiti, A. (2008). Strategic competence as a fourth-order factor model: A structural equation modeling approach. Language Assessment Quarterly, 5(1), 20–42.
  • Phakiti, A. (2008). Construct validation of Bachman and Palmer’s (1996) strategic competence model over time in EFL reading tests (This paper was the runner-up for the International Language Testing Association's Best Article Award 2008.). Language Testing , 25(2), 237–272.
  • Phakiti, A. (2006). Theoretical and Pedagogical Issues in ESL/EFL Teaching of Strategic Reading. University of Sydney Papers in TESOL, 1, 19–50.
  • Phakiti, A. (2006). Modeling cognitive and metacognitive strategies and their relationships to EFL reading test performance. Melbourne Papers in Language Testing, 11(1), 53–95.
  • Phakiti, A. (2005). An empirical investigation into the nature of and factors affecting test takers’ calibration within the context of an English Placement Test (EPT). Spaan Fellow Working Papers in Second or Foreign Language Assessment, 3, 27–46.

Conference papers

  • Grant, R., Cook,G., Phakiti, A. & Lundberg, T. (2011). English Language Proficiency and Mathematics Achievement of English Learners in a US State.. In . ALAA-ALANZ Conference, Canberra, Australia, Nov 29-Dec 2, 2011.
  • Phakiti, A. (2011). A research synthesis of the psychometric properties of automated writing evaluation (AWE) programs. In . ALAA-ALANZ Conference, Canberra, Australia, Nov 29-Dec 2, 2011.
  • Phakiti, A. (2009). Investigating the Effects of Cognitive and Metacognitive strategies on EFL Reading Performance via Two Structural Equation Models. In . The first combined conference of the ALAA-ALANZ (Applied Linguis, December 2-4, 2009.
  • Phakiti, A. (2008). The effects of reading task difficulties on test-takers confidence and calibration. In . Fourth University of Sydney TESOL Research Network Colloquium, T, September 5, 2008.
  • Phakiti, A. (2008). Focus Speaker: Researching Strategic Competence in Second Language Learning and Use. In . Second Free Linguistics Conference, The University of Sydney, Au, October 11-12, 2008.
  • Phakiti, A. (2008). Predicting NESB international postgraduate students’ academic achievement: A structural equation modeling approach. In . Australian Association of Applied Linguistic (AALA) Conference, , July 2008.
  • Phakiti, A. (2007). Modeling the effects of cognitive and metacognitive strategies on EFL reading performance. In Second Annual University of Sydney TESOL Research Network Colloquium. University of Sydney, 3-4 August 2007.
  • Phakiti, A. (2006). Reasons for miscalibration. In American Association for Applied Linguistics (AAAL). Montreal, Quebec, June 17 - 20, 2006..
  • Phakiti, A. (2006). On the Nature of L2 Test Takers’ Calibration in Reading Tests. In . University of Queensland, July 5th-8th .


  • Phakiti, A. Stevenson, M., Paltridge, B., & Woodrow, L. . (in press). A Synthesis and Evaluation of Research into the Psychometric Properties of Automated Writing Evaluation , TOEFL Research Report..
  • Stevenson, M., Phakiti, A., Paltridge, B. & Woodrow, L. . (in press). A Synthesis and Evaluation of Research into the Effectiveness of Automated Feedback for English for Academic Purposes Teaching and Learning, TOEFL Research Report.
  • Woodrow, L., Hirsh, D. & Phakiti, A. . (2011). A Longitudinal Examination into Factors Affecting Academic Performance of ESL Graduates from USFP Studying at the University of Sydney, USFP Research Report.