Academic teaching and research are closely connected within the Department of English Studies. The different sections of the Department have the following specialisms:
- The linguistics section of the department has a strong focus on corpus linguistics and applied linguistics. Staff and postgraduate projects include empirical, data-based studies of native and non-native varieties of English as a world language, Early and Late Modern English, phraseology and grammar, speech acts and pragmatics, genres and varieties such as academic English and the language of conflict, language teaching methods, and student learning styles.
- In literary studies, main research interests include literature from different cultures and epochs. This includes British, Irish, American and Canadian literature, but also the so-called new literatures. American and Canadian literatures and cultures are main foci of the Trier Center for American Studies and the Center for Canadian Studies,
- In language teaching, a major interest is the development of teaching materials for students.
The Department of English Studies participates in interdisciplinary research activities both with departments at the University of Trier, for example with phonetics, computational linguistics, geography, political science, history and the other philological departments, and with other German universities, for example the University of Mainz with its Historisch-Kulturwissenschaftliches Forschungszentrum Mainz/Trier [HKFZ]. The Department of English Studies is also a member of the Trierer Zentrum für Mediävistik (TZM).