Yes, Applied Linguistics, as the name suggests, is the application of linguistics to 'real life'. It is concerned with such issues as, for example, educational policy (e.g. which languages should be taught in schools?), politics (e.g. do immigrants have to learn the language of the country they go to?) or media (e.g. how certain media use language to reinforce stereotypes), and is interesting, for sure. My dissertation, the question about which I've placed in the 'Statistical research' forum, isn't really about that side of things, though, more of a traditional, classroom-based grammar teaching investigation.