Curricular development Archive

Results in BLC Posts

Proverbs in the Intermediate Filipino Language Classroom

Fall 2021 Fellow: Karen Llagas When asked about goals for enrolling in an Intermediate Filipino class, student responses usually cluster around communication (“to be able to talk with my grandparents…”), identity formation (“to learn about my origins and culture”) and professional and scholarly growth (“to be able to use Filipino as I pursue medicine/law/social work/research..”).…

Beyond Bilingual: Translanguaging Experiments in a Reading & Composition Course at an Aspiring Hispanic Serving Institution 

Fall 2021 Fellow: Karina Palau What happens when we re-envision a bilingual Spanish-English, Reading & Composition (R&C) course as an opportunity to recognize students’ unbordered language identities and value their dynamic languaging practices? Informed by emerging research on translanguaging, this forthcoming article reports on pedagogical strategies tried in a Fall 2022 pilot course at UC…

Breaking Boundaries: Global Perspectives, Digital Humanities-Inflected Pedagogy and the Teaching of Italian History and Literature

Spring 2022 Fellow: Zhonghua Wang Abstract This project entails the incorporation of Digital Humanities (DH)-inflected pedagogy into the Italian history and literature curriculum. DH methods facilitate a laboratory-based learning environment that values collaboration, creativity, and transdisciplinarity, and serve as a meaningful analytical approach to rethink the Italian literary canon, and to challenge methodological nationalism and…

Developing Digital Technology for Meeramuni

Fall 2021 Fellow: Raksit Lau-Preechathammarach Language endangerment is an urgent issue in the present day, with over 40% of the world’s languages at risk of having no more speakers within the next century. Carrying out language revitalization requires a multipronged approach and collaboration between a diverse group of stakeholders. In this paper, we will focus…

The Soviet 1960s: A Multiliteracies Approach to Intermediate Russian

Spring 2022 Fellow: Sabrina Jaszi Despite the adoption of a “Multiliteracies” framework in many FL classrooms (Kern, 2000; Paesani, Allen, & Dupuy, 2016; Swaffer and Arens, 2005), a text-centered approach has been slow to catch on in Russian language pedagogy. The need for explicit grammar instruction provides an obstacle, but a holistic, text-focused approach still…

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…

Results in L2 Journal Articles

Vocabulary and the Upper-division Language Curriculum: The Case of Non-native and Heritage Spanish Majors

L2 lexical studies have established that learners need to acquire knowledge of the first 3,000 most frequent words in order to enjoy 95% coverage of the vocabulary used in spontaneous speech (Nation 2006). However, there has been little data available that reveal how many of these most frequent words can be recognized by university language majors, with Robles-García´s (2020a, 2020b) recent study being a welcome exception. The present inquiry into L2 vocabulary gains employed the same word-recognition test developed by Robles-García (2020a) in order to characterize the vocabulary size enjoyed by upper-division Spanish majors, both non-native and bilingual native (i.e., heritage) speakers, enrolled in a California public university. The results show that non-native Spanish majors in their third and fourth year of the major are still struggling to learn the first 3,000 most frequent Spanish words. In contrast, the heritage students demonstrated strong word recognition of almost all of the words in this basic inventory. The curricular implications of these results are discussed with respect to both non-native and bilingual native Spanish majors and an argument is made for continued explicit vocabulary instruction throughout the upper-division program.

Marginalization of Local Varieties in the L2 Classroom: The Case of U.S. Spanish

The United States is one of the world’s most populous Hispanophone countries, with over 35 million Spanish-speakers. In addition, Spanish is the most widely taught foreign language in the United States, with more students enrolled in Spanish at the higher-education level than in all other modern languages combined. How, then, is the United States’ status as a top Spanish-speaking country reflected in the treatment of sociolinguistic variation in Spanish as a Foreign Language (SFL) curricula at the university level? This case study of a large, public university in the Southwest, which is home to an SFL program among the largest in the country, explores that question using a two-tiered approach. First, an analysis is conducted to examine ...

Redesigning an Introductory Language Curriculum: A Backward Design Approach

In response to calls for curricular change in foreign language programs and institutional requirements to evaluate programmatic effectiveness, this article presents a backward design approach to the redesign of an introductory French curriculum grounded in the framing concept of cultural literacy. In addition, data from student evaluations, written exams, and instructor feedback illustrate how program evaluation efforts have contributed ...

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