IAPLL hosts a broad range of events to provide learning and networking opportunities. Our principal event, the PLL conference, is a biennial conference that allows interdisciplinary scholars interested in psychology and language teaching and learning to connect and  learn from each  other. Our next conference is in Cape Breton, Canada. 

If you're interested in hosting  the PLL conference in 2022 in your area, please see the Conference Call for Bids 2022 below. 



The conference theme is inspired by the physical location of PLL4, where massive ocean currents shape the seasons and the rising and falling waves affect our day-to-day lives. The psychology of language learning has its own currents and waves -- long running currents of thought shape our thinking about languages, how they are learned and used, and the ways in which movements in language, people and cultures flow with each other. We also see waves of thinking emerging from new directions in the study of languages, exciting developments that rise and fall.


The theme is meant to communicate both stability and change. Currents suggest large-scale patterns and waves implicating localized and fast changing processes. The notion of waves also suggest looking at the phenomena that are visible on the surface with currents running deep below. 


The conference theme inspires broad questions such as the following:


·       What are the currents of thought that influence languages and cultures?

·       What are the waves of change sweeping over language education?

·       How do we sustain the waves of motivation and facilitating emotion that learners experience?

·       How do we alter the currents of thinking to expand our theoretical and methodological perspectives?

·       How can educational institutions identify and respond to the changing tides we see all around us?


June 2018

The third international Psychology of Language Learning conference (PLL3) was held at Waseda University, Tokyo, June 7-10, 2018.

The conference:

The theme of the conference is “Stretching Boundaries” and the aim is to bring together people from all over the world to share their interest in the role of psychology in the learning and teaching of languages. The conference will address a wide range of topics relating to psychology in language learning, such as:

  • language learners as people and their various individual characteristics, including self-concept, motivation, identities, beliefs, agency, and emotions

  • the dynamics of the learning process and interaction with others

  • context and the psychology of language learning

  • innovative and interdisciplinary approaches to research

  • practical classroom applications

Plenary talks were delivered by:

  • Mimi Bong, Korea University, South Korea

  • Zoltán Dörnyei, University of Nottingham, UK

  • Lourdes Ortega, Georgetown University, USA

  • Richard M. Ryan, Australian Catholic University, Australia

  • Ema Ushioda, University of Warwick, UK


May 2016

Following the success of the first international PLL conference “Matters of the Mind: Psychology and Language Learning”, which was held in Graz, Austria, in May 2014, a second PLL conference was held in Jyväskylä, Finland, on 22 – 24 August 2016.

The conference:

The conference, which was entitled “Individuals in Contexts: Psychology of Language Learning 2”, aimed to bring together scholars from all over the world interested in the role of psychology in learning and teaching languages.

Some of the key issues in the field of PLL addressed at the conference, included:

  • learners and teachers as individuals with all their characteristics, including self-concept, motivation, identities, beliefs, agency, emotions, strategies, styles, etc.,

  • the learning process and its outcomes, and

  • the diversity of contexts.

Plenary talks were delivered by:

  • Phil Benson, Macquarie University, Australia

  • Maggie Kubanyiova, University of Birmingham, UK

  • Sarah Mercer, University of Graz, Austria

In addition to the plenary sessions, the programme consisted of multiple colloquia, workshops, parallel paper sessions and poster sessions.

Additional information

The conference was organised back-to-back/in cooperation with the 26th annual conference of the European Second Language Association (EUROSLA), held on 24-27 August 2016.

PLL2014 (GRAZ)

May 2014

The first international PLL conference was held in Graz on 29-31 May 2014. The conference, which was entitled “Matters of the Mind: Psychology and Language Learning”, explored the interface between psychology and language learning and teaching.

The conference:

Some of the topics that were covered in the conference included autonomy, beliefs, emotions, goal setting, group dynamics, motivation, the self, strategies, metacognition, willingness to communicate, individual differences.

Plenary talks were delivered by:


The conference helped to connect scholars working in diverse domains of Language Learning Psychology. The collaborations that were established in the conference paved the way for the following publications:

  1. An edited collection entitled ‘New directions in language learning psychology’ (Christina Gkonou, Dietmar Tatzl & Sarah Mercer, eds.), published 2016 by Springer.

  2. An edited collection entitled ‘Positive Psychology in SLA’ (Tammy Gregersen, Peter MacIntyre & Sarah Mercer, eds.),  published by Multilingual Matters.

  3. Two Special Issues in  Studies in Second Language Learning and Teaching (Vol. 5, Issue 2 and Issue 3), focussing on ‘Psychology and language learning’, which were guest edited by Stephen Ryan and Sarah Mercer.

Interested in attending of hosting one of our conferences? Reach out today.