Associate Professor Michael Harrington

Associate Professor

School of Languages and Cultures
Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
+61 7 336 56719


Dr Michael Harrington’s research interests include second language acquisition, applied linguistics, cognitive model of second language learning, and computer-assisted language learning

His current research includes memory-based models of sentence processing, working memory capacity and aptitude for second language learning, and computer-mediated second language development.

He is the author of articles on:

  • Second language sentence processing.
  • Second language reading and vocabulary development.
  • The role of working memory in second language learning.
  • The acquisition of Japanese and English as second languages.


  • PhD, U.C.Santa Cruz
  • MA, University of Hawaii
  • BA, Inter Christ


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View all Supervision



Book Chapter

  • Harrington, Bridget, Harrington, Michael W., McCreary, Jan and Russell, Heather (2014). Life with a spinal cord injury: from the parents', daughter's and clinician's perspective. In Lawrence, C. Vogel, Kathy Zebracki, Randal R. Betz and M. J. Mulcahey (Ed.), Spinal cord injury in the child and young adult 1st ed. (pp. *-*) London, United Kingdom: MacKeith Press.

  • Loschky, Lester C. and Harrington, Michael (2013). A cognitive neuroscientific approach to studying the role of awareness in L2 learning. In J. M. Bergsleithner and S. Frota (Ed.), Noticing and second language acquisition: Studies in honor of Richard Schmidt (pp. 289-307) Honolulu, Hawaii, United States: National Foreign Language Resource Center.

  • Harrington, Michael (2010). Computational models of second language sentence processing. In William Grabe, Merrill Swain and G. Richard Tucker (Ed.), The Oxford handbook of applied linguistics 2nd ed. (pp. 189-203) Oxford, U.K.: Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/oxfordhb/9780195384253.013.0013

  • Iwashita, N. and Harrington, M. W. (2008). Summary and discussion of studies in the acquisition of Japanese as a second language in Australia. In Sakamoto Akira, Nagatomo Kazuhiko and Koyanagi Kaoru (Ed.), 多様化する言語習得環境とこれからの日本語教育 (pp. 79-96) Tokyo, Japan: 3A Corporation.

  • Harrington, M. W. (2004). Commentary: Input processing as a theory of processing input. In B. VanPatten (Ed.), Processing instruction: theory, research, and commentary (pp. 79-92) New Jersey, U.S.A.: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc..

  • Harrington, Michael (2002). Cognitive perspectives on second language acquisition. In Robert B. Kaplan (Ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Applied Linguistics (pp. 124-140) New York: Oxford University Press.

  • Harrington, Michael (2001). Sentence processing. In Robinson, Peter (Ed.), Cognition and Second Language Instruction 1 ed. (pp. 91-124) Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.

Journal Article

Conference Publication

  • Harrington, M. and Dennis, S. (2004). Structural Priming in Sentence Comprehension. In: R. Alterman and D. Kirsh, Proceedings of the 25th Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society. The 25th Annual Meeting of the American Cognitive Science Society, Boston, MA, (515-6). 31 July - 2 August, 2003.

  • Dennis, S. and Harrington, M. (2002). The Syntagmatic Paradigmatic Model: A distributed instance-based model of sentence processing. In: M. Isahara and Q. Ma, The 2nd Workshop on Natural Language Processing and Neural Networks, Tokyo, Japan, (38-45). 30 November, 2001.

  • Harrington, M. W. (1999). Figure and Ground in SLA theory. In: T. Fujimura, Y. Kato and R. Smith, Proceedings of the 10th Conference on Second Language Research in Japan. The 10th Conference of Second Language Research in Japan, Tokyo, International Univ. of Japan, (61-92). 24 January 1998.

  • Harrington, M. W. (1999). Gendered sentence final forms in Japanese as a second language. In: P. Robinson, Representation & process. Pacific Second Language Research Forum, Aoyama Gakuin University, Tokyo, (61-74). 26-29 March 1998.

  • Harrington, M. (1999). Sentence processing research and an L2 transition theory. In: P. Robinson, Representation and Process. The 3rd Pacific Second Language Research Forum, Tokyo, Japan, (165-174). March 28th - 30th, 1998.

Other Outputs

Grants (Administered at UQ)

PhD and MPhil Supervision

Current Supervision

  • Master Philosophy — Principal Advisor

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

    Other advisors:

Completed Supervision