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Writing your Master (Diploma) or PhD thesis

For MA, diploma and PhD students:

This list is supposed to help you plan and select a topic for your MA, diploma or PhD thesis. Please mind that a potential supervisor can turn you down if the topic is not part of their research activities or if it is too narrow or not focused enough. If you have a topic in mind but cannot find it on the list, try to find a supervisor with a research area closest to what you are planning to do and find out whether they are able and willing to supervise your thesis. You are best advised to come and see a potential supervisor with a clear idea of what you are interested in doing, while at the same time keeping an open mind about any suggestions she or he might have.

Please note: A number of senior post-docs have been commissioned by the Studienpräses to supervise theses (MA & Diploma) until 30 September 2018 (start of supervision; an extension of this period is subject to revision). Please find a list of their names and supervision areas at the end of the page! 

Univ.-Prof. Dr. Christiane Dalton-Puffer (contact details)

  • Classroom discourse analysis
  • Content-and-Language Integrated Learning (CLIL)
  • Instructed foreign language learning
  • Learner language
  • Word-formation in English

Univ.-Prof. Dr. Alexandra Ganser (contact details)

  • Cultural studies, cultural theory, & American popular culture
  • Mobility studies, transatlantic American studies & the Black Atlantic
  • Gender Studies
  • Visual Cultures & Intermediality
  • Native American Studies 
  • Eco-criticism and scientific discourse

Univ.-Prof. Dr. Sarah Heinz (contact details)

  • Contemporary British drama and narrative literature
  • The contemporary Anglophone novel
  • Theories of intersectionality and race, specifically whiteness
  • Theoretical and narrative conceptualisations of transcultural encounters
  • Filmic, dramatic, and narrative representations of race, gender, class, and nation from Shakespeare to today
  • Cultural discourses of identity, normality, and normalisation

Univ.-Prof. PD. Mag. Dr. Gunther Kaltenböck, MA (contact details)

  • Cognitive-Functional grammar
  • Pragmatics and discourse
  • Corpus linguistics
  • Phonetics and phonology

Univ.-Prof. Dr. Evelien Keizer (contact details)

  • Linguistic analysis of Present-day English: models and approaches (in general)
  • Functional approaches to linguistic analysis (in particular Functional Discourse Grammar)
  • Cognitive approaches to linguistic analysis (in particular Cognitive Grammar)
  • Linguistic categorization and prototype theory
  • Syntax, semantics and pragmatics (and the interaction between them)

Dr. Melissa Kennedy (contact details)

  • Postcolonial and 'World' literature
  • Indigenous literature and cultural studies
  • London fiction
  • Literary Economics

Univ.-Prof. Dr. Sylvia Mieszkowski (contact details)

  • British literature
  • Cultural analysis
  • Poststructuralist theory
  • Gender studies and queer theory
  • Literary sound studies
  • British popular culture

Univ.-Prof. Dr. Susanne Reichl  (contact details)

  • Black and Asian British Literature
  • Time travel in fiction and other media
  • The teaching of literature and culture at school
  • Selected aspects of British Cultural Studies
  • Selected aspects of literature for children and young adults

Univ.-Prof. Dr. Nikolaus Ritt (contact details)

  • History of English in the widest sense
  • Language variation and change (all levels of description)
  • Phonetics and Phonology
  • Morphology
  • Linguistic theory and metatheory

Ao. Univ.-Prof. Dr. Monika Seidl (contact details)

  • British Cultural Studies
  • Adaptation Studies
  • Visual Culture

Univ.-Prof. Dr. Barbara Seidlhofer (contact details)

  • English as a Lingua Franca
  • Variation in contemporary English
  • English in intercultural communication and multilingualism
  • Applied linguistics for language teacher education
  • Sociolinguistics
  • Text and discourse analysis

Ao. Univ.-Prof. Dr. Ute Smit (contact details)

  • CLIL / EMI (English-medium instruction), esp. at the tertiary level
  • English language use and learning in and around the classroom (incl. motivation)
  • Genre analysis and ESP (English for specific purposes)
  • Analysing English discourse in various settings (incl. computer-mediated communication)
  • English-focussed language planning and policy (incl. attitudes)

Ao. Univ.-Prof. Dr. Eva Zettelmann (contact details)

  • Narratology
  • Lyric theory
  • Cognitive poetics
  • Poetry C16 - C21


Senior Post-Docs

The following senior post-docs have been commissioned by the Studienpräses to supervise theses (MA & Diploma) until 30 September 2018 (start of supervision; an extension of this period is subject to revision). The respective Post-Docs have kindly agreed to supervise up to two theses per year.

Name Supervision areas
Univ.-Ass. Mag. Dr. Eugen Banauch, MAExile Studies. Jewish Canadian and American Studies. Popular Culture. Transatlantic Studies. Cultural Appropriations
Dr. Dieter Fuchs, MAJames Joyce, High Modernism; Shakespeare, Early Modern Period; Irish Studies (18th-20th ct.)
Mag. Dr. Helen Heaney, BALanguage testing, second and foreign language reading, innovative methods in EFL
Mag. Dr. Julia Lajta-Novak, M.A.Life-writing, biographical fiction, historical fiction, biopics, live poetry, Restoration verse satire, Gender Studies
Univ.-Ass. Mag. Dr. Marie-Luise PitzlEnglish as a lingua franca
Mag. Dr. Pia Resnik, MAPsycholinguistic aspects of second language acquisition, ultimate attainment in foreign language learning, multilingualism
Mag. Dr. Lotte Sommerer(Diachronic) Construction Grammar, syntactic variation and change in Present Day English
Dr. Barbara Soukup, Mag.phil., MScSocial psychological language attitude study, variationist study of linguistic landscapes, interactional discourse analysis


Retired and emeritus/a professors

Univ.-Prof. Dr. Ewald Mengel  (contact details)

  • English historical novel
  • Modern English drama
  • Translation theory and cultural transfer
  • Contemporary South African novel 
  • English novel from the 18th to the 20th century

Univ.-Prof. Dr. Waldemar Zacharasiewicz (contact details)

  • Literature and Culture of the American South (from the colonial period
    until the present)
  • Ethnic Literature in the United States and in Canada
  • Transatlantic Relations in the Anglophone World
  • Travel Literature
  • Imagology (with Reference to North America and Europe)
  • Canadian Fiction
Institut für Anglistik und Amerikanistik /
Department of English
Universität Wien
Campus d. Universität Wien
Spitalgasse 2-4/Hof 8.3
1090 Wien

T: +43-1-4277-424 01
F: +43-1-4277-9424
Universität Wien | Universitätsring 1 | 1010 Wien | T +43-1-4277-0