Professor April McMahon

Professor April McMahon commenced as Vice-Chancellor on 1 August 2011. She was formerly Vice-Principal Planning, Resources and Research Policy at Edinburgh University. She gained an MA in English Language and Linguistics followed by a PhD in English Language at Edinburgh University. For 12 years she taught at the Department of Linguistics at Cambridge University, where she was also a Fellow of Selwyn College, and was Professor of English Language and Linguistics at the University of Sheffield from 2000 until 2004.

In 2005 Professor McMahon was appointed Forbes Professor of English and Head of the Department of Linguistics and English Language at Edinburgh University and subsequently Head of the College of Humanities and Social Science before becoming Vice-Principal in 2009.

Her academic discipline is linguistics and her research work has focused on comparisons between various English accents, with a particular interest in Scots, how and why languages change, interdisciplinary approaches to family relationships between languages, and the implications of encroaching majority languages. She has authored and co-authored a number of books and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh and of the British Academy. Professor McMahon is married with three children.