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CARLA Update - Electronic Newsletter - top header and logo

Spring 2020

CARLA Staff Photo


  • 2020 CARLA Summer Institute Program
    Sequester Savings! Register by April 24 to save $100
  • Summer Institute Spotlight: Secondary Immersion Educators
    Online June 22-24, 2020
  • Minnesota Council on the Teaching of Languages and Cultures Fall Conference
    Call for ProposalsDue by April 30

CARLA Program Updates

  • Foreign Language Literacies Research
  • New Open-Access Journal: Second Language Research & Practice

CARLA Resources

  • Online Teaching Resources

CARLA @ Conferences

  • Online Presentation Series
    Starts April 9th!

Dear Colleague:

We are sending you this issue of the CARLA Update with our sincere wishes for good health for you and your loved ones during the COVID-19 crisis.

We are proud to announce that all of the CARLA Summer Institute instructors have agreed to teach their institute in an online format—either asynchronous or synchronous. In addition, as you’ll see below, we’re offering our spring presentation series via Zoom. We are in awe of the amazing energy, dedication, and resilience of our community of language educators!

With best wishes,
The CARLA Staff – Karin, Kate, Liz, Marlene

Announcements - section header
summer institute instructors and participants

2020 CARLA Summer Institute Program for Language Teachers

In anticipation of—and hope for—a positive turn toward health for our global community, we invite you to sign up for a CARLA summer institute! CARLA offers a wide range of institutes targeted at foreign/world language, ESL/EFL, heritage language, and immersion educators from a variety of teaching levels and contexts. Check out the full line-up of CARLA summer institutes below or online.

SEQUESTER SAVINGS: CARLA will offer an additional $50 discount to our early-bird rate (total $100 off regular registration rate) for all who register by April 24 to say thank you for making a commitment to join our internationally renowned program during this time of uncertainty.

  • Sequester Savings! Register by April 24 to save a total of $100 off the regular price!
  • Early Registration deadline moved to May 22—$50 off the regular price
  • Regular Registration deadline moved to June 12.
  • See our adapted refund policy.

Register Now!

The 25th annual CARLA Summer Institute Program Is Going Online!

In response to the COVID-19 situation, all of the CARLA’s Summer Institutes have moved online. Check out the details below.

Asynchronous Online Institutes

Transitioning to Teaching Language Online
Asynchronous 4-week online institute
June 22–July 20, 2020
Instructors: Claudine Boucaud, Ritu Jayakar, Marlene Johnshoy, and Frances Matos

Meaningful Portfolio ImplementationNew!
Asynchronous 5-week online institute
June 29–July 31, 2020
Instructors: Stephanie Knight and Julie Sykes

Using the Web for Communicative Language Learning
Asynchronous 5-week online institute
June 29–August 2, 2020
Instructors: Florencia Henshaw and Marlene Johnshoy

Culture as the Core in the Second Language Classroom
Asynchronous 3-week online institute
July 13–31, 2020
Instructors: Martha Bigelow and Kaishan Kong

Teaching World Languages and Cultures in Elementary Settings
Asynchronous 3-week online institute
July 13–31, 2020
Instructors: Leah Shepard-Carey

Synchronous Online Institutes

Secondary Dual Language and Immersion: Achieving the Promise of Continuation ProgramsNew!
Synchronous 3-day online institute
June 22–24, 2020
Instructor: Cory Mathieu

Assessing Language Learners' Communication Skills via Authentic Communicative Performance Tasks
Synchronous 1-week online institute
July 13–17, 2020
Instructor: Donna Clementi

Creativity in the Language Classroom
Synchronous 1-week online institute
July 13–17, 2020
Instructors: Anne Cummings Hlas and Amy Young

Foreign Language Literacies: Using Target Language Texts to Improve Communication
Synchronous 1-week online institute
July 13–17, 2020
Instructors: Mandy Menke and Kate Paesani

Using Technology in Second Language Teaching
Synchronous 1-week online institute
July 20–24, 2020
Instructors: Adolfo Carrillo Cabello, Marlene Johnshoy, and Dan Soneson

Critical Approaches to Heritage Language Education
Synchronous 1-week online institute
July 20–24, 2020
Instructors: Jenna Cushing-Leubner and J. Eik Diggs

Teaching Language Through the Lens of Social Justice
Synchronous 1-week online institute
July 27–31, 2020
Instructors: Cassandra Glynn and Pamela Wesely

Information and Registration

The summer institutes are co-sponsored by the University of Minnesota's College of Education and Human Development and College of Liberal Arts.

Secondary Dual Language and Immersion:
Achieving the Promise of Continuation Programs

June 22-24, 2020
Synchronous 3-day online institute

As dual language and immersion (DLI) programs transition into secondary schools, teachers and administrators are often faced with unique challenges that are less frequently addressed in general DLI literature, research, and professional development programs. During this three-day institute specifically designed for the secondary (middle and high school) dual language and immersion context, participants will explore the what, how, and why of secondary continuation programs. In particular, we will consider program structure, curriculum and assessment perspectives, and instructional practices that are necessary to ensure that DLI students continue toward high levels of bilingualism and biliteracy with solid academic language proficiency in the partner language and English. Throughout this institute, participants will engage in constructive conversation, connect research to personal experiences, and apply new ideas directly to their teaching context.

After this institute, you will be able to:

  • Identify logistical criteria for successful secondary DLI programs,
  • Understand content and language integration in the secondary classroom,
  • Recognize opportunities and identify strategies for collaborating across the curriculum with other DLI and English-medium teachers in your program, and
  • Develop an instructional sequence for incorporating a language focus into a content-based unit.

Instructor: Cory Mathieu (University of Minnesota)

Information and Registration

Minnesota Council on the Teaching of Languages and Cultures (MCTLC)
2020 Fall Conference: Proficiency Possible

November 6–7, 2020
Plymouth, MN

MCTLC encourages all language professionals to share their expertise with their colleagues at the upcoming fall conference. The theme of the conference this year is “Proficiency Possible.” Keynote speaker Leslie Grahn will provide strategies for deepening teachers’ understanding of how the proficiency-based approach impacts teaching and learning and how to communicate about it to students, other educators, administrators, and parents.



Program Updates - section header

Foreign Language Literacies Research

Project co-director and CARLA Director Kate Paesani, and her research collaborator Heather Willis Allen (University of Wisconsin-Madison), recently published an article that reports on their research into teacher learning and implementation of literacies and genre-based writing pedagogies. “Genre instruction, textual borrowing, and foreign language writing: Graduate teaching assistant perspectives and practices” is now available as an OnlineFirst article in Language Teaching Research. Findings of this qualitative study demonstrate that participants' conceptualizations and implementation of textual borrowing were emergent, variable, and influenced by their everyday understandings and experiences related to writing. Implications for foreign language writing instruction and teacher professional development are provided based on these findings.

New Open-Access Journal: Second Language Research & Practice

Second Language Research & Practice is the new refereed, open-access journal of the American Association of University Supervisors and Coordinators (AAUSC). Published annually in the fall, the journal’s aim is to address postsecondary language education from theoretical, empirical, and practical perspectives through the publication of research papers and reports. The journal editors, Johanna Watzinger-Tharp (University of Utah) and Kate Paesani (CARLA, University of Minnesota) are now accepting submissions for the Fall 2021 issue. Learn more details on the journal’s website.


Program Updates - section header

Online Teaching Resources

Many organizations are offering assistance to language educators as they face the challenges of teaching in new ways. Check out the resources below:

Pandemic Prepping in the Language Class

Pandemic Prepping in the Language Class

This webinar addresses critical questions for teachers to consider as they create contingency plans for language classes and learning centers. The panel also discusses a range of solutions that may be adapted to unique learning environments. This is the first in a series of webinars offered by the International Association for Language Learning Technology (IALLT).

Collections of Resources for Online Teaching

CARLA has compiled a list of Resources to Support Language Teaching Online to help language teachers to meet the challenges of the “new normal” of online teaching during this time of unprecedented change. Below are a few of the resources that are included in the collection:

  • AATF Web-Based Activities offers a series of webinars to support French teachers during school closures and links to online activities for French.
  • AATG Resources for Online Teaching and Learning offers a series of webinars on teaching online for German teachers and links to general and German-specific resources online.
  • AATSP Resources for Teaching and Learning offers a collection of links to classroom resources related to the teaching and learning of Spanish and Portuguese as well as general resources for teaching and learning online. Specific materials are included for K-8, 9-12, and Higher Ed.
  • ACTFL Resources in Response to COVID-19 offers free access to a wide array of professional development opportunities, including Virtual Learning Modules on a variety of topics, webinars developed by the Distance Learning SIG, and the AAPPL Communication Builder that facilitates the practice of interpersonal, interpretive, and presentation modes of communication. ACTFL has also initiated an online community dedicated to online teaching/learning resources.
  • JNCL-NCLIS Language Enterprise Resources for Persevering through COVID-19 offers a curated list of resources and information about COVID-19 and languages, including teaching, learning, and the language industry. 
  • University of Minnesota Language Center Tip of the Day provides one small tip or reminder each day on how to be effective in this new alternative instruction environment.


CARLA @ Conferences - section header

Though many conferences have been cancelled due to the COVID-19 crisis, several colleagues from the University of Minnesota have agreed to give their conference presentations via Zoom. The presentations will be given live on Thursdays from Noon–1 p.m. (Central Time) from April 9–May 7, 2020. See details below.

These presentations will be given live via Zoom. You must register to attend and we will send you the link.

We hope that you will join us for these LIVE presentations!

CARLA Online Presentation Series

"No soy marroquí; soy andalusí (I'm not Moroccan, I am Andalusí):" Chronotopic Constructions of Language and Identity

Thursday, April 9, 2020
Noon–1 p.m. (Central Time)
Register to see this presentation live via Zoom!

Despite the large number of Moroccan immigrants in Spain, few studies have examined the role of identity in language use of this community (García-Sánchez 2014). To address this gap, the current case study analyzes identity construction in two semi-structured interviews with two Moroccan brothers living in Granada, Spain to understand how they negotiate their identities based on spacio-temporal configurations. I employ Bakhtin's construct of chronotope, which was later developed by Blommaert and De Fina (2017), to understand how the brothers' transnational identities are negotiated using socio-historical connections between the Arab world and al-Andalus. The results show that identities can be socially constructed using various spatiotemporal configurations. Furthermore, these configurations serve to negotiate and support multilingual practices in a predominantly monolingual society.

Presenter: Carol Ready is a PhD candidate in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese Studies in cotutelle with the Department of Languages, Texts, and Contexts at the University of Granada in Granada, Spain. She specializes in Hispanic Linguistics with research interests in sociolinguistics, bi- and multilingualism, language contact, language policy, language acquisition, and pedagogy. Her current work focuses on the sociolinguistic, cultural, and ideological aspects of Arabic and Spanish in Spain.

Moving to Multiliteracies: Tools to Support Teacher Understanding

Thursday, April 16, 2020
Noon–1 p.m. (Central Time)
Register to see this presentation live via Zoom!

Recent scholarship foregrounds multiliteracies pedagogy as a viable approach for developing students’ foreign language literacies, yet few tools exist to assist teachers in implementing this approach. Following a brief overview of multiliteracies pedagogy, we present two tools for teachers that were developed in response to research findings from CARLA’s Foreign Language Literacies project: an infographic featuring multiliteracies and other meaning-based approaches and a lesson analysis checklist. Both tools bring together research and practice by helping teachers explain multiliteracies concepts, distinguish multiliteracies from other approaches, and scaffold multiliteracies lesson plans.

Presenter: Kate Paesani is Director of the Center for Advanced Research on Language Acquisition (CARLA) and affiliate Associate Professor in the College of Liberal Arts at the University of Minnesota. Her research focuses on literacies-oriented curriculum and instruction and language teacher development, couched within the frameworks of multiliteracies pedagogy and sociocultural theory.

Channeling “Voices” to Improve Second Language Intelligibility

Thursday, April 23, 2020
Noon–1 p.m. (Central Time)
Register to see this presentation live via Zoom!

This research study shows how international students enrolled in different levels of an intensive English institute modified their suprasegmental speech patterns and coordinating nonverbals in appropriating the voices of model speakers. LaScotte and Tarone (2019) argue that emerging L2 proficiency can be conceptualized as consisting of distinct voices—each voice a linguistic variety internalized in social context that retains characteristics of their original speakers—with significant differences in grammatical accuracy and fluency. Related studies show these voices can significantly alter suprasegmentals, nonverbals, and discourse styles in ways known to improve intelligibility (Tarone & Meyers, 2018). Drawing on Bakhtinian sociocultural theory (e.g., Broner & Tarone, 2001), this study analyzes the video-recordings of seven English learners’ verbal and nonverbal linguistic features over time as they learned to “mirror” the speech of fluent speakers of English they had selected as models. Data were collected over seven weeks in an elective course focused on pronunciation improvement. Participants took part in a Mirroring Project (Lindgren et al., 2003; Meyers, 2013) in which they selected, memorized, and performed a segment from a TED Talk or YouTube video by a model English speaker. Participants were then instructed to “channel” their model English speaker’s voice in speaking about their own major or place of employment. Data samples were analyzed in terms of pitch and intensity using Praat software (Boersma & Weenink, n.d.). Findings demonstrate that speakers learned to produce (sometimes dramatic) shifts in these features of learner language, which are known to promote intelligibility; findings suggest that interaction with semiotic resources (i.e., videos) is a valuable tool in pedagogical approaches that are congruent with an emerging transdisciplinary framework of L2 use and acquisition (Douglas Fir Group, 2016).

Presenters: Darren LaScotte is an ESL Teaching Specialist in the Minnesota English Language Program. Within the broader scope of applied linguistics and sociolinguistics, his research focuses on second language acquisition and use, and on the resulting implications for teaching and learning.
Elaine Tarone is Distinguished Teaching Professor Emerita at the University of Minnesota where she taught graduate courses in Second Language Education, and served as the Director of CARLA. She continues to do research on second-language acquisition and provide professional development for language teachers.

Land as Interlocutor: Transcribing and Analyzing Material Participation in Interaction

Thursday, April 30, 2020
Noon–1 p.m. (Central Time)
Register to see this presentation live via Zoom!

In recent years, materials use scholarship has expanded beyond creation and evaluation concerns to include research examining the relationships between language learners’ development and their interactions with the material world (Guerrettaz et al., 2018; Guerrettaz & Johnston, 2013; Toohey, 2015). As centers of inquiry have shifted so have methods, particularly toward approaches that allow for greater attention to situated action. Yet, relying on methodologies that were developed for the purpose of examining human-human interaction to instead examine human-nonhuman relationships can present numerous challenges.

This paper presents one example of the methodological challenges associated with transcription and analysis of Indigenous multilingual language learners interacting with the natural and material world of the forest. Using point of view cameras to capture line-of-sight and movement through space, we videorecorded small groups of multilingual Ojibwe Elders and youth as they walked and talked together in the woods in order to better understand the relationships between Indigenous language reclamation and land-based pedagogy with land-as-materials.

We show how centralizing Indigenous ontologies (Deloria, Jr., 1999; Hermes, 2005) restructures the relationships between humans and nonhumans, revealing unforeseen limitations to a microinteractional approach to materials use research. We then illustrate how Goodwin’s (2000) theory of action, particularly his notion of substrate, can be leveraged to support Ojibwe relational perspectives (Simpson, 2014), to better understand how Indigenous Ways of Knowing (IWOK) (Bang & Marin, 2015; Kawagley, 1993) are generated in intergenerational Ojibwe conversations on and with the land. This research contributes to current conversations in the field of applied linguistics surrounding multimodality, Indigeneity, and materialism.

Presenters: Mel M Engman is a Lecturer in the School of Social Science, Education, & Social Work at Queen's University Belfast (QUB). Mel's research focuses language and sign in education, especially Indigenous and heritage language reclamation/maintenance contexts.
Mary Hermes is Professor in Second Language Education at the University of Minnesota. Her research focuses on language revitalization and how it can connect people to the land and the planet.

Learning Separately, Speaking Together: Oral Communication Activities in the Remote L2 Classroom

Thursday, May 7, 2020
Noon–1 p.m. (Central Time)
Register to see this presentation live via Zoom!

As university-level FL students reach upper-division content courses, their speaking skills tend to plateau. In the current distance-learning environment, it can be even more difficult for students to practice these skills. In this presentation, we offer guidance for transitioning speaking activities to online-platforms. We discuss examples of instructional activities that merge language and literary-cultural learning in order to promote advanced-level speaking in the world of physical-distancing. Our work is a result of an initiative that integrated systematic and explicit attention to speaking development in third-year German and Spanish upper-level courses.

Presenters: Emily Groepper is a PhD candidate in German, Nordic, Slavic and Dutch (GNSD) at the University of Minnesota.  Her research interests include second-language acquisition and her dissertation research focuses on expressions of emotion in medieval German mæren.
Alexander Korte is a PhD candidate in Spanish and Portuguese at the University of Minnesota. His research focuses on second-language acquisition and his dissertation investigates piracy in medieval Iberian literature.



Improving language teaching and learning


The Center for Advanced Research on Language Acquisition (CARLA) at the University of Minnesota is a research and resource center devoted to improving language teaching and learning.

The CARLA Update is a quarterly electronic newsletter designed to give second language teachers and researchers current information on the programs and projects currently operating under the auspices of CARLA. We encourage you to share this newsletter.

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