My research career started in the mid-1990s when I studied cultural identity and the acquisition of English as an additional language among home language speakers of Afrikaans and Southern Sotho. I focus on understanding the language repertoires of multi- and bilingual speakers of South African languages and how these repertoires relate to language use in different contexts. I explore issues like multilingualism and social cohesion in South Africa.
I worked as a high school teacher of English in South Africa and a business communication lecturer and head of department teaching development at the Vaal University of Technology. I started to work at the NWU in 2003 and held various positions at the NWU. From 2003 to 2008 I was the director of Academic Support Services at the Potchefstroom campus and the institutional director of Academic Development and Support. In 2009 I joined the Vaal Triangle campus of the NWU in the capacity of director research development in the faculty of humanities. Currently, I am the director of UPSET, a research focus area that study the understanding and processing of languages in complex settings. I chair the sub-programme in Multilingualism and Applied Language studies in UPSET.
I had the privilege to work on several NWU institutional structures. I was a member of the NWU research commission from 2011 to 2015 and I chaired the commission in 2014 and 2015. Outside the NWU I was the president elect of the South African Association of Language Teachers (SAALT) in 2010 to 2014. I am the editor of the DoE accredited journal, Journal for Language Teaching, associated with SAALT (2012-2016). I am a member of the NRF panel for the Linguistics, Languages and Literature (LLL) panel that facilitate the rating process (2014-2017).
My postgraduate students study topics related to multilingualism, language maintenance, language shift and language teaching. My MA student, Ms Natasha Ravyse, received the institutional award for the best MA dissertation at the NWU in 2014 for her work on Fanagalo as a sub-cultural language. I was the first receiver of the award for my MA study in 1993.