2017-2018 Purdue Liberal Arts
Faculty Development Center Fellows
Center for Undergraduate Instructional Excellence Fellows
Patricia Hart, Professor of Spanish for the School of Languages and Cultures
Project Title: Online Spanish Culture Classes
I am requesting an appointment to the center in order to transform several Spanish courses for online instruction. I will begin with SPAN 480 (Popular Culture of Spain) and SPAN 482 (Culture and Civilization of Spain). I have already transformed one class, SPAN 330, with the help of a Digital Ed grant, and I am working on two more this semester with IMPACT. My goal is to create a slate of classes that can be offered either in a hybrid or a fully-online format in order to give students flexibility and allow more students to major and minor in Spanish.
Daniel J. Olson, Assistant Professor of the School of Languages and Cultures
Project Title: Teaching pronunciation with visual feedback: A comprehensive Pedagogical Approach
Many authors note the lack of empirically validated materials for teaching second language pronunciation (Deng et al., 2009). Addressing this need, I propose the design of a curriculum for teaching pronunciation via visual feedback. Employing emerging technology, and based on frameworks of noticing (Schmidt, 1990) and inductive learning (Shulman & Keisler, 1966), visual feedback provides a novel modality for language learners to compare, self-analyze, and self-correct common pronunciation errors. My preliminary work, the first to incorporate visual feedback into the basic language classroom, demonstrates statistically significant improvements in pronunciation (Olson, 2015). Validated materials will have potential impact across multiple languages.
Center for Social Sciences Fellow
James A. McCann, Professor of Political Science
Project Title: The Pull of Partisan Campaigns: Elections and the Political Inclusion of Immigrants
Social scientists are devoting increasing attention to factors that affect immigrant incorporation into American democracy. Yet to date relatively little research has been conducted on political attitudes and activities among the foreign-born during national campaigns, when conflict over agendas is most intense and opportunities to take part are abundant, even if one cannot vote. As a CSS Fellow, I will work full-time to close this gap by analyzing original surveys of Latino immigrants administered during recent election cycles. A book-length manuscript on the impact of campaigns on immigrant political acculturation will be completed by the end of the academic year.
Center for Humanistic Studies Fellows
Michael Johnston, Associate Professor of English
Project Title: The Reading Nation in the Age of Chaucer
I am currently writing a book entitled “The Reading Nation in the Age of Chaucer.” In this study, I argue that late medieval England (ca. 1350–ca. 1500) witnessed uniquely decentralized book production methods, when manuscripts were made locally, often by those whom the readers themselves knew, or by those who hailed from the same region as the readers themselves. As a result of these conditions, I argue, we should not consider manuscripts from this period as commodities; rather, it is the printing press, with its centralization of capital and labor, which would effect the transformation of the book into a commodity. To make this case about book production in the period, my monograph takes up four major Middle English literary texts (The Prick of Conscience, William Langland’s The Vision of Piers Plowman, and John Lydgate's “Dietary” and “Stans puer ad mensam"), examining every surviving manuscript of each in an attempt to get a bird’s-eye view of the sorts of books readers encountered.
Maren Linett, Associate Professor of English
Project Title: Literary Bioethics: Disability, Animality, and the Human
This multidisciplinary project brings the voices of literary authors into debates about the value of different kinds of lives. Literary Bioethics: Animality, Disability, and the Human contends that fictional treatments of bioethical questions have the virtue of presenting vividly imagined worlds in which certain values hold sway, casting new light onto those values; and the more plausible and well-rendered readers find these imagined worlds, the more thoroughly we can evaluate the justice of those values. The study considers fictional representations of nonhuman animals, old human beings, disabled human beings, and cloned human beings in works by H. G. Wells, Aldous Huxley, Flannery O’Connor, and Kazuo Ishiguro from bioethical perspectives. It makes clear that not only philosophers but also imaginative writers have important things to tell us about the questions we must explore as we take more matters of life into our own hands.
Center for Artistic Endeavors Studies Fellow
Donald Platt, Full Professor of English
Project Title: Two Books: Cloud Hands, Earth Hands and Sun Pictures
On a fellowship from the Center for Artistic Endeavors, I would like to finish and revise two books of poetry for publication. They are tentatively titled Cloud Hands, Earth Hands and Sun Pictures. Cloud Hands, Earth Hands, on which I have been working steadily for the last two and a half years, is a collection of poems about my ninety-six-year-old mother’s death and dying. Sun Pictures, my second book project, is a collage of historical documents, persona poems, and other poems in a variety of forms about the small town of Broome in northwestern Australia, its pearl-diving industry from 1860 through 1930, and the history of the treatment of the Aboriginal population in Australia.