People

Heather Marsden

Heather is the director of NISSLL. She is a lecturer in the Department of Language and Linguistic Science at the University of York. Her research focuses on the second language acquisition of phenomena at the syntax–semantics interface, with a special interest in Japanese and other East Asian languages. Heather has a BA (Japanese Studies) from Cambridge and an MA and PhD (Linguistics) from Durham. She worked as a translator, a language teacher, and a language teaching materials editor, before beginning her research career.

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Thomas Jochum-Critchley

Thomas is the lead teaching practitioner in NISSLL. He is a teaching fellow in German in the Department of Language and Linguistic Science at the University of York. His key areas of interest within language teaching focus on the design of innovative language teaching materials to support autonomous and independent learning, and exploration of the benefits of audio-visual and digital technologies for language learning. He is also an expert on German and Austrian film, and has used this expertise both in teaching and in engagement with the wider public through collaborations with local cinemas and cultural institutions on German language film. Before coming to York, Thomas taught German at a number of HE institutions in the UK and Europe including France, Portugal and his native Austria.

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Kook-Hee Gil

Kook-Hee is a founding member of NISSLL. She is a senior lecturer in Applied Linguistics in the School of English at the University of Sheffield. Her second language acquisition research focuses on phenomena that integrate syntax, semantics and discourse, and she is also interested in the role of language instruction in second language acquisition. She has a BA from Chungnam National University in Korea, and MSc and PhD from Edinburgh.

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Melinda Whong

Melinda is a founding member of NISSLL. She is a senior lecturer in English Language Teaching in the Dept. of Linguistics and Phonetics, University of Leeds. Melinda’s research synthesises linguistics and second language acquisition (SLA) theory in order to find applicability for language teaching and learning. More specifically she is working to bridge the gap between generative theoretical linguistics and language teaching, by exploring application of theoretical SLA research findings to the language classroom. She has a BA from Washington University (Missouri, USA), and an MA and PhD from Durham. Melinda has worked as an English language teacher in China, Egypt, and the UK, and as course coordinator at the Durham Language Centre.

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Cinzia Bacilieri

Cinzia is an associate member of NISSLL. She is a teaching fellow in Italian in the Department of Language and Linguistic Science at the University of York. Before becoming an Italian teacher, Cinzia trained in Conservation and Heritage studies at the University of Bologna. Cinzia’s approach to teaching Italian includes embedding elements of Italian art, archaeology, history, cinema or literature into the lesson content in order to contextualise the language study. Cinzia has also taught Italian at other institutions in the UK and in Korea.

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Suzi Bewell

Suzi is an associate member of NISSLL.  She is the curriculum area leader for Modern Foreign Languages on the PGCE programme in the Department of Education at the University of York. Suzi taught languages at secondary school level before taking up this role. She has a keen interest in developing pupils’ oracy and using new technologies such as iPads and podcasting in MFL.  She has been involved in various national MFL projects, working alongside the British Council and Futurelab.  Currently she is involved in developing KS3 French transition resources in conjunction with IFRU (Institut Français du Royaume Uni) ALL (Association for Language Learning) and Network for Languages.

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Elaine Lopez

Elaine is a NISSLL-associated PhD researcher, investigating how to integrate linguistic theory into language teaching practice, and she is an experienced ELT teacher. Elaine was recently awarded an HRC Doctoral Fellowship and won second prize in the project presentation competition. Her PhD is focussed on the second-language acquisition of English articles, with reference to the properties of definiteness and specificity.
Follow her on Twitter (@ELopezYork).

Emma Marsden

Emma is an associate member of NISSLL. She is a senior lecturer in the Department of Education, University of York. Emma is interested in most aspects of second language teaching and learning including: grammar pedagogy, implicit learning, morphosyntactic development, input processing, and education policy and practice. She is also interested in the role and design of experiments in educational research, and is one of the founders of the IRIS public database of data collection instruments for second language research. Current projects include an investigation of teacher engagement with research. She worked as a high school languages teacher before starting her research career at Southampton, where she did her MA and PhD.

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Kazuki Morimoto

Kazuki is an associate member of NISSLL. He is a senior teaching fellow in Japanese at the University of Leeds.  He studied at Doshisha University in Kyoto, Japan, then attained his MA in Asian Civilization and Teaching Japanese as a Foreign Language at the University of Iowa. At Leeds, he teaches Japanese to all year levels. He is also involved in research in collaboration with professors at Tokyo University of Foreign Studies. His research interests include the teaching and assessment of written Japanese, and learning strategies for the Year Abroad. His research is informed by learner corpus data.

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Maria Muradás Casas

María is an associate member of NISSLL. She is a teaching fellow in Spanish in the Department of Language and Linguistic Science at the University of York. She attained her BA and MA at San Francisco State University, and has experience of teaching Spanish in a range of settings and across a range of levels in California and the UK. Through this experience, she has acquired a strong understanding of the learning process and needs of Spanish learners in different contexts. María has lived in Mexico, Spain and the United States, which has led to her developing knowledge of the language variations of Spanish both from Spain and Latin America, as well as the Spanish from the United States.

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Leah Roberts

Leah is an associate member of NISSLL.  She is a leader at the Centre for Language Learning at the University of York. Before joining York’s Department of Education in September 2011, she spent eight years as a research scientist at the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics in Nijmegen, The Netherlands, in the Language Acquisition Group, researching acquisition and processing in bilingual and multilingual speakers. Leah has also worked as a researcher at the University of Essex comparing real-time language processing of child and adult learners.

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Shirley-Ann Rueschemeyer

Shirley-Ann Rueschemeyer is an associate member of NISSLL. She is a lecturer in the Department of Psychology at the University of York.  She received her Masters Degree in Linguistics from the University of Regensburg in Germany in 2001. From there she moved to the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences in Leipzig, Germany, where she wrote her doctoral dissertation on how the bilingual brain processes two distinct languages. Her current research investigates how language processing interacts with other cognitive domains, such as action and perception.

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Anna Socha-Michalik

Anna is an associate member of NISSLL.  After studying German and Polish for her BA, she earned an MA in Polish Philology and an MA in Teaching Polish as a Foreign Language from the Jagiellonian University in Krakow in 2009.  Since then, she has been working towards a PhD in linguistics at the same University.  She has re-joined the University of Sheffield in the department of Russian and Slavonic Studies as a lector in Polish in September 2013, having worked here previously from 2010 to 2012.  She has also previously taught Polish for foreigners at all levels of proficiency in Sweden (Stockholm University), Poland (Jagiellonian University).  Apart from her fascination with the wonderful world of Polish morphosyntax, she is also interested in teaching methodologies for Polish as a foreign language.

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James Wilson

James is an associate member of NISSLL. He is a teaching fellow in Russian and Language Studies at the University of Leeds.  He attained his BA (Russian and Czech), MA  (Slavonic Studies) and PhD (Slavonic linguistics) at  the University of Sheffield.His research interests include variationist sociolinguistics and dialectology. James is especially interested in language variation in Czech, dialect contact and second dialect acquisition. He also has a keen interest in language pedagogy and in innovative methods of teaching Slavonic languages at both undergraduate and postgraduate level.

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Lucy Zhao

Lucy is an associate member of NISSLL.  She is a senior lecturer in Chinese Studies at the University of Sheffield. Lucy did her BA and MA in Qindao and Shanghai, then completed her PhD in Linguistics at the University of Cambridge. In her current role in Sheffield, she is involved in Chinese language teaching as well as in research. Lucy’s main research interests include theoretical topics relating to comparative syntax and second language acquisition, as well as the classroom-oriented topic of intercultural communication.

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