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    About John Trim

The John Trim Collection

Mr Trim donated his personal collection of books and documents relating to his lifetime’s work on languages to the documentation and resource centre of the European Centre for Modern Languages (ECML) in 2004. He personally inaugurated the collection, on 16 September 2005 during celebrations for the ECML’s 10th Anniversary.

About John Trim

John Trim was an expert in the field of phonetics, linguistics, language didactics and policy. He was director of the Council of Europe’s Modern Languages Projects from 1971 to 1997, overseeing developments ranging from the Threshold Level to the Common European Framework of Reference. 

After his graduation in German, John Trim occupied several positions in the field of university education and research. He notably taught phonetics and set up the Department of Linguistics at Cambridge University, lectured and conducted seminars in some 40 countries, and acted as director of CILT (Centre for Information on Language Teaching and Research) in the United Kingdom.

Concerning his involvement in professional associations, Mr. Trim was, among others, president of BAAL (British Association for Applied Linguistics), vice-president of AILA (International Association of Applied Linguistics) and is an honorary member of AILA and ALL (Association for Language Learning). He is an Officier dans l’Ordre des Palmes Académiques (France) and holds honorary doctorates from the Universities of Dublin, Prague, Wolverhampton and Oulu. He is the author of numerous published books and articles.

1949: John Trim graduated in German at University College London; lectureship in phonetics.
1958: Appointment at the University of Cambridge.
1962: Fellow of Selwyn College, first Director of the Department of Linguistics in 1965. 
1963-1978: Director of the university’s vacation courses in Linguistics and the English Language. 
1970-1978: Chair of the Executive Committee for international examinations in English as a Foreign Language.
1978-1987: Director of the Centre for Information on Language Teaching and Research (CILT) in London.
1969-1997: Involvement in the Modern languages Projects of the Council of Europe, which he directed from 1971 to 1997 with responsibility for the development of the Threshold Level series in 25 languages, 72 international workshops for teacher trainers and the composition, piloting and publication of the Common European Framework for Languages (CEFR), of which he was part-author.