Annual Report 2011

Second Language Acquisition

More about this topic: 

The goal of the Second Language Acquisition program is to better understand the process of learning a non-native language. This interdisciplinary program provides students with training in language curriculum, and assessment, including multiple areas of specialization linguistics, language program direction, and technology.

“The social turn in second language acquisition theory is looking at not just learning the words on a literal level, but it’s also joining the discourse community of people who are speakers in the second language,” said Judy Liskin-Gasparro, program director.

Due to the variety of skillsets, many students who leave the program fare well in the job market following graduation, Liskin-Gasparro said.

SLA includes a Ph.D. program through FLARE (Foreign Language Acquisition Research and Education).

Being bilingual has many benefits. As regions of the world become more accessible through technology, so does interaction with different cultures, and being bilingual is becoming more important for business and on the Internet. According to recent studies, knowing a second language may be linked to prolonging the development of Alzheimer's disease as well as improve multitasking abilities, said Rouymana Slabakova, associate professor of linguistics.