DISSERTATION

THE EFFECTS OF THE GREAT TEXTUAL SHIFT: SPATIAL MULTIMODALITY AND SECOND LANGUAGE READING

This experimental study investigates the effects of The Great Textual Shift on second language reading. The Great Textual Shift is operationalized through three text conditions: 1) a verbal text – text composed of only writing; 2) a supplementary text – text composed of writing and images where the images add to the meaning of the written text; 3) a complementary text, composed of writing and images where meaning in the two modes must be integrated for the text to be intelligible. Participants were intermediate learners (n=90), advanced learners (n=90), and native speakers (n=90). Each language group was further divided into three subgroups of 30 participants, and each subgroup was tasked with reading in one text condition and answering comprehension questions about that text. The overall goal of the experiment was to determine which text condition was more comprehensible and potentially more conducive to second language acquisition. To read more about the study and view the results, click on the below buttons. 

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MATERIALS DEVELOPMENT WITH VIZI

RESEARCH, COMPOSITION, AND ARGUMENT FOR A DIGITAL AGE

UNDERSTANDING DATA AND RESEARCH ANALYSIS

In 2015, I co-authored the Vizi e-text Research, Composition, and Argument for a Digital Age, along with Katherine Green, Mary McGinnis, Laura Romano, and Paul Ranieri. Unlike other e-books, Vizi texts are composed of animation, simulation, video, graphic, self-assessment, and exercise, features that make them suitable for both face-to-face and online instruction. 

In my lesson “Understanding Data and Research Analysis,” I explain the concept of “data” from a research standpoint, define what we mean by qualitative and quantitative data, as well as qualitative and quantitive research analyses. With simple examples of data such as “how we learn to bike” to more complex examples such as “the factors driving second language acquisition,” I demonstrate how we move from our research data to answering our research question following various steps.  

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THESIS

BARGAINING IN BOBO-DIOULASSO: RULES, STRUCTURE, AND DISCOURSE STRATEGIES

Bargaining, an exchange whereby vendor and customer dispute the price of goods to come to an agreement, is highly characteristic of Bobo-Dioulasso’s commercial transactions. Although the inhabitants of the city naturally engage in bargaining on a daily basis, the performance of this linguistic, cultural, and economic artifact can be daunting to many outsiders. Indeed, a lack of access to Bobo-Dioulasso local norms has plagued outsiders’ conception of bargaining, from viewing it as a complete waste of time to equating it to an opportunity to rip off foreign visitors. I saw this cultural misunderstanding as an invitation to empirically study bargaining exchanges in the context of Bobo-Dioulasso.  

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POSTER PRESENTATION

THE INTERNAL STRUCTURE OF A JULA NARRATIVE

This presentation explores how Jula speakers manipulate features of prosody, pauses, and syntactic units to tell effective, attention-grabbing, and suspenseful stories. 

CONFERENCE PRESENTATION

ENGLISH CLUBS: A WAY TO CREATE AUTHENTIC LANGUAGE LEARNING ENVIRONMENTS IN EFL CONTEXTS

This video summarizes my two-year experience initiating and overseeing an English Club in Bobo-Dioulasso, Burkina Faso, West Africa. Upon completion of my bachelor’s degree in 2010, I returned to my home country and taught high school for two years. As a way to respond to the shift the country’s education system was undergoing, a shift from the old system calqued on the French education model to a new system that is more in line with international standards, I created an English club. English clubs provide language learners with ample opportunities to practice the target language in language learning environments where such opportunities are scarce. In our specific club, learners organized panel discussions, sport practice sessions, karaoke and poetry competitions, word games, jokes, riddles, crossword puzzles, all in English. These activities helped them foster their communication, leadership, speaking, listening, peer tutoring, research, and technology skills. The above video summarizes some of the activities that were carried out in the club. Enjoy!