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Tim McNamara

Languages And Linguistics
social sciences
language & linguistics
education & educational research
applied linguistics and educational linguistics; languages and literacy
psychology, educational
language testing
Tim McNamara's Profile Picture

Tim McNamara

Primary Interest
Language and citizenship
Tim McNamara's Profile Picture

Tim McNamara


Building on a career as an EFL/ESL teacher and teacher trainer in Australia and the United Kingdom, Tim McNamara taught Applied Linguistics at Melbourne from 1987 until his retirement in 2018. With Dr Terry Quinn he established the graduate program in Applied Linguistics from 1987, and with Professor Alan Davies founded the Language Testing Research Centre in 1990.

His language testing research has focused on performance assessment, theories of validity, the use of Rasch models, and the social and political meaning of language tests (he has done extensive work on the use of language tests in immigration and citizenship contexts, and on language analysis in verifying the identities of asylum seekers). His work on language and identity has focused on the impact of poststructuralist approaches to identity and subjectivity, and he has a particular interest in the writings on language of the French philosopher Jacques Derrida. Tim is the author of Language Testing (OUP, 2000) and co-author (with Carsten Roever) of Language Testing: The Social Dimension (Blackwell, 2006). His recent books include Language and Subjectivity (CUP, 2019) and (with Ute Knoch and Jason Fan) Fairness, Justice, and Language Assessment (OUP, 2019). Tim has acted as a consultant with Educational Testing Service, Princeton where he worked on the development of the speaking sub-test of TOEFL iBT; he was also part of the team involved in the original development of IELTS. He is the creator of the Occupational English Test (OET), used for the registration of health professionals in the UK, Ireland, Australia, Singapore and New Zealand. Tim is a frequent speaker at international conferences and has served on the board of Applied Linguistics, TESOL Quarterly, Annual Review of Applied Linguistics, Language Testing, Language Assessment Quarterly, Measurement, the International Journal of Applied Linguistics and the Journal of English as a Lingua Franca. Tim is a former President of the American Association for Applied Linguistics (AAAL, 2017-2018) and was Conference Chair for the 2017 AAAL conference in Portland, OR.


Displaying the 7 most recent projects by Tim McNamara.



Project Types


Research Grant


Research Contracts

Scholarly Works

Displaying the 120 most recent scholarly works by Tim McNamara.

Honours, Awards and Fellowships


Distinguished Achievement Award, 2015

International Language Testing Association


Winner of the award for best book published in the field of language testing, 2006-2008

Sage/International Language Testing Association


NOTINLIST - Not in List


FAHA - Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities






Languages And Linguistics

Regular Member

British Association of Applied Linguistics

2nd Vice-President And Member Of The Executive 2015-2019

American Association for Applied Linguistics

Regular Member

Applied Linguistics Association of Australia

Regular Member; Former President

International Language Testing Association


Doctor of Philosophy

University of Melbourne

Master of Arts

University of London

Diploma In Teaching English as a Foreign Language

Royal Society of Arts (UK)

Graduate Diploma in Education

University of Melbourne

Bachelor of Arts

University of Melbourne