English for the EDI generation: Predicting and tracking the role of English and digital/mobile technologies in Higher Education across East and South Asia


The project explores the impact of the growing use of digital/mobile technologies on regional and local ecologies of teaching, assessment and learning of English (TALE) in the four most populous countries in East and South Asia – Bangladesh, China, India, and Indonesia.


The project is tracking and evaluating a set of interconnected, predicted trends concerning the impact of the growing use of digital/mobile technologies (DMT) in Higher Education in East and South Asia. The two phase study is developing an ecological research approach for tracking and assessing predictions and trends for English and teaching, assessment and learning of English (TALE) practices. The project has a focus on Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI), particularly gender issues.

Data for the study is being collected through surveys (students and teachers), interviews, focus groups and Padlet discussions at several universities in partner countries across four broad discipline areas.

The study is underpinned by Bronfenbrenner’s (1979) ecological system theory which describes the layers of factors that collectively affect human behaviour. The ecological framework will be used to analyse the qualitative data (students’, teachers’ and other stakeholders’ experiences and views) on the use of DMT in TALE. The study provides a comprehensive analysis of current practices surrounding English and its future trends in East and South Asia, which will contribute to the British Council’s global initiative on the Future of English. The study is significant in that it offers insights into trends in terms of:

(a) how technological innovation, which drives contemporary learning and communication in English, is shaping the future of the language in education, particularly higher education;

(b) whether issues of gender, equality, diversity and inclusion will be an important consideration in the future of English;

(c) the role that English plays as a linguistic resource alongside other languages;

(d) policy and practice implications for the development of English in Asia

The role of IET

IET is leading the project. We are also active in the community of practice initiated by the British Council to enable collaboration and information exchange among several projects funded under their Future of English programme.

Research programmes


  • British Council - Future of English Research Grants


  • University of Dhaka, Bangladesh
  • Beijing Foreign Studies University, China
  • Birla Institute of Technology & Science, India
  • State Islamic University of Surakarta, Indonesia
  • Monash University, Australia