Liam Blything

PhD student

Research Interests

I am a Senior Research Associate on a large scale corpus methods project that investigates the effectiveness of teacher strategies in guided reading.

The purpose of the project is to understand how teachers scaffold children’s understanding during story book interactions with the aim to identify how best to support children of different ages and ability groups in the classroom environment.

This project is supported by Lancaster University’s Centre for Corpus Approaches to Social Sciences (CASS), which has recently been awarded the Queen’s Anniversary Prize for Higher and Further Education. The principal investigators on the project are Professor Kate Cain ( and Dr Andrew Hardie (

I am also pursuing research interests that follow my PhD which examine the role of connectives in children's integration of text:

-In more sensitive online measures (that are capturing the language process as it happens), are children as young as four able to take advantage of connectives to aid their integration of text?

-Why does children's knowledge of some connectives develop later than for other connectives?

-Comprehension versus production: Is the developmental sequence of comprehension skills for temporal, causal and adversative connectives similar to that of production?

Children's processing and comprehension of complex sentences containing temporal connectives: the influence of memory on the time course of accurate responses
Blything, L.P., Cain, K.E. 10/2016 In: Developmental Psychology. 52, 10, p. 1517-1529. 13 p.
Journal article

Why young children fail to understand ‘before’ and ‘after’
Blything, L.P. 2016 216 p.
Doctoral Thesis

Young children’s comprehension of temporal relations in complex sentences: the influence of memory on performance
Blything, L., Davies, R., Cain, K. 11/2015 In: Child Development. 86, 6, p. 1922-1934. 13 p.
Journal article