- Associate Professor
- Director Language Research Centre
|F2013 - GERM 413 - Intermediate German: Speaking and Listening|
|W2014 - GERM 469.9 - Selected Topics in German Literature and Linguistics (Phonetics & Phonology)|
|W2014 - GERM 629.4 - Seminar in German Language and Linguistics (PhoneticsAndPhonologyOfGerman)|
One strand of my research centers on the acquisition of second language pronunciation. In my early studies I found that prosodic aspects of speech (rhythm, stress, and intonation) are more important than the production of individual speech sounds to native speakers when they judge speech for nativelikeness. As a result, I performed research at a French immersion school in Calgary to assess students' attitudes toward pronunciation and the effect that this has on their perception and production of French stress and intonation. Much of my recent work has been on the perception and production of prosodic cues to meaning. That is to say, I am interested in determining which prosodic cues (especially phrase-final lengthening, intonational rises and falls, and pause) are salient to listeners. I also investigate the extent to which the same people are able to make use of such cues in their own speech. This research has important implications for the language classroom, and I plan to create pedagogical interventions like these to assist second language learners of German to produce more comprehensible second language speech.
Recently I also did some work on the use of technology (particularly virtual reality) in the second language classroom, and as the Director of the Language Research Centre, I worked with graduate students to create an online database of recordings of all 70 translations of Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone.
I have supervised MA students in German working on research in areas including second language pronunciation, computer-mediated communication, speech perception and heritage language learning. I have served on a number MA and PhD examining committees in Linguistics, Psychology and Education at the University of Calgary.
Renate Schmidt, German, "Teaching Phonetics in the High School German Classroom: Impact on Pronunciation, Spelling and Decoding Abilities", completed 2006. · Roswita Dressler, German, "Motivation and demotivation in heritage language learners of German", completed 2008. · Deanne Cobb, German, "Focus on Targeted Forms in Beginner German as a Second Language Learners' Synchronous Computer-Mediated Communication", completed 2009.