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My scholarship is dedicated to improving K-16 world language instruction. Specifically, my research explores teacher preparation, teacher identity, and teacher practice. Each of these areas can be divided into sub-categories with the goal of understanding various questions: How does rurality affect teacher identity? How do personal and professional identities inform teacher practice and beliefs? How are educators prepared for classrooms when the educational landscape continues to change how we live and work? 


My research has evolved over the past several years due to new challenges in the discipline and increased understandings of best practices. Overall, my scholarship is dedicated to improving world language (WL) instruction for all learners, beginning with investigations in three categories: teacher preparation; teacher identity; and teachers’ during- and post-pandemic classroom experiences. Each area can be further divided into sub-categories with the goal of understanding various phenomena: the influence of rurality on teacher identity, teacher agency, queer language teachers’ professional experiences, teacher beliefs and practices, and the affordances and challenges of technology.  I have published 25 articles in peer-reviewed journals, one is under review, and another two will be submitted by the end of May. Among these, four studies relied on mixed methods, two utilized survey research, and the remaining studies were guided by qualitative approaches (e.g., narrative, case study). Additionally, I co-authored a book chapter in the Handbook of Research on Effective Online Language Teaching in a Disrupted Environment (Eds. J. LeLoup & P. Swanson) with the goal of re-envisioning WLE as a result of the global pandemic.

Regarding the impact of my research, I have worked to submit articles to top-tier journals with high impact factors. My article entitled “Remote Language Teaching” in System has been cited nearly 300 times. The publication led to invitations to present at The University of Texas as well as collaborations between other scholars on a symposium at the American Association of Applied Linguistics conference. Much of my research has been supported by internal or external grants. In 2022, I was the recipient for the College of Arts & Sciences Research Award in the Humanities. Most recently, my work has shifted focus, given both my local context in rural Mississippi and the political narrative that jeopardizes equity in schools and classrooms. I have written two articles, one under review and one forthcoming, related to queer WL teachers in the Rural South. I am in the process of writing a third article on the topic, which will then lead to a presentation at 2023 ACTFL. Finally, this work has led to a grant project to guide WL teachers of gendered languages (Spanish and French) to reflect on how their instruction either consciously or unconsciously supports diverse learners. If awarded, the study will allow us to learn more about the examples teachers select as well as their classroom discourse, while ultimately providing the training in critical pedagogy needed to support growing, socially active educators in rural schools.

Beyond empirical studies, I have also written eight articles for teacher audiences. Among these, seven are directly related to improving teacher knowledge and skills, using my empirical research as a point of departure. Often, teachers may not be aware of the empirical journals; however, I also find that teachers need concrete strategies grounded in the literature. In this way, I am making my research accessible to those outside of academia. In sum, the scholarly publications on my CV serve as an example of both the breadth and depth of my work and the importance of including the critical stakeholders in teacher development: K-12 teachers, K-12 teacher educators, and preservice teacher candidates.

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