BLC Fellows Reports Archive

Results in BLC Posts

From Communities of Practice to the Emergence of Thirdness: Voices, Identities, and Subject Positions of Chinese International Students in the U.S.

Based on data collected from in-depth interviews with 15 Chinese international students enrolled in a large public university in the U.S., this exploratory study brings to the fore the heterogeneous and contentious nature of negotiating one’s voices, identities, and subject positions as an international student in a transnational milieu. The findings of this study cast…

Teaching French Listening Comprehension and Cultural Awareness through Regional Variation

At the university level, French language instruction in the US traditionally includes a course on phonetics and pronunciation. While the major aim of such courses is to improve students’ speaking and listening competence, they also emphasize speaking ‘correctly’ using standardized, metropolitan French. In this project I propose a curriculum that emphasizes the diversity of spoken…

Adding A Robust Cultural Component in Elementary Tibetan

Two types of students tend to enroll in the Elementary Tibetan course: those with a strong interest in Tibetan culture and those with a strong interest in Tibetan linguistics. During this fellowship I have created several modules that introduce cultural material in a mixed English and Tibetan format in an effort to meet the expectations…

Medieval French in the Modern French Classroom

The French language sequence at Berkeley stresses the importance of exposing students to a wide range of authentic texts and emphasizes cross-cultural understanding. Despite the rich cultural and literary heritage of the medieval and early modern periods in France, this exposure is limited to modern French. What are some of the objections to and difficulties…

Developing Cultural Literacy Through Social Media in the Russian Language Classroom

In this paper I identify strategies to help students explore authentic Russian language materials on social media platforms: Facebook and Vkontakte.  I present an overview of three modules that introduce the Russian language social media landscape and guide students through identifying and tracing political and cultural debates occurring in this space. This approach encourages lifelong learning…

Harnessing the Power of Electronic Media: Incorporating Film in the Introductory Czech Classroom

This paper discusses activities designed for students in an Introductory Czech class.  The film-generated assignments presented here, based on selections from the Czech film Kolja made available to students as clips from the BLC Library of Foreign Language Film Clips via bCourses, address not only a range of specific language skills (listening, speaking, writing, and even…

Teaching Russian Verbs of Motion through Early Cinema

For the intermediate student of Russian, there is no topic more daunting than motion verbs. Verbs that denote motion further complicate the language’s aspect system (already difficult to master), and for non-native speakers, these verbs express surprisingly precise ideas. This project and paper aim to improve upon static, pictorial models of motion that textbooks offer…

Italian by Design: A “Bridge” Course

We have grown accustomed to perceiving the arts and language as very different kinds of engagements: the former transgressive and creative, the latter structured and acquired. This talk presents a blueprint for an advanced Italian language course (102) that approaches language and design as analogous processes. Tracing how the coordinates of space and time are…

FrancoForniens: Bringing Oral History into the French-language Classroom

In this presentation, I will show how I borrowed techniques from oral history to build an archive of interviews with “FrancoForniens,” or French speakers living in the Bay Area. Oral history has long been employed in K-12 classrooms to “personalize” the experience of history for students; it asks them to consider how history has impacted…

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