Notre Dame faculty present at the 2015 ACTFL Conference

Author: Joachim Castellano

The University of Notre Dame was well represented at the 2015 American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) Conference this past weekend. Professors Alesia Blad, Lori Crawford-Dixon, Katherine Heitmann, Congcong Ma, and Courtney Walker, Wei Wang, Chengxu Yin, and Yongping Zhu presented at the conference in San Diego. Professor Ma said, "My presentation went on very well, I introduced Chinese teaching strategies at Notre Dame...Instructors from different places showed great interest in the teaching mode here." Professor Wang commented, "Chengxu and I presented the Design principles and strategies for flipping CFL classroom and a pilot study of comparison between flipped class and traditional class in learning outcome respectively. The presentation was well-received by the audience and it (ended) with a heated discussion session." Professor Yin added, "The ACTFL annual meeting provided an exciting opportunity for me to keep updated with the trends in Chinese language instruction and to exchange ideas with colleagues from around the country. In addition, my presentation at the conference helped to raise the visibility of Notre Dame’s Chinese language program."

Their presentation abstracts follow:

Presenter(s): Lori Crawford-Dixon, Katherine Heitmann, and Courtney Walker, University of Notre Dame

Assessing Student Learning: Tools for FL Educators

This session will equip participants with a variety of assessment tools, notably a unit plan template that models best practice and assessment techniques, as well as several integrated performance assessments (IPAs) and their grading rubrics. Additionally, discussion will include assessing proficiency versus performance, and ultimately propose a benchmark model based on the Can-Do Statements that aims to guide students to deeper levels of language competency.


Presenter(s): Shutan Dong, Princeton University; Nini Li, Williams College; Congcong Ma, University of Notre Dame

Implicit Vocabulary Teaching Strategies in Advanced Chinese Classes

Advance learners often seek to further their Chinese skills and express themselves more accurately and in a refined way by using authentic colloquial expressions, formal and advanced vocabulary. However, they often use them incorrectly due to a lack of understanding of the context, pragmatic restrictions and more often because of the misleading English explanation. Therefore, it is proposed to use implicit teaching strategies and deliver vocabulary in meaningful contexts, in order to instill the sense of appropriate context, collocations, pragmatic restrictions. This panel will mainly discuss using implicit strategy to teach authentic colloquial expressions, formal vocabulary and distinguish synonyms that often have the same English Explanation. To illustrate, lesson plans, teaching demonstrations, and analyses of authentic cases will be presented.


Presenter(s): Jia Yang, University of Dayton; Wei Wang and Chengxu Yin, University of Notre Dame

Towards the Design Principles for Flipping CFL Classroom

This panel aims to formulate a design framework for flipped classroom in CFL through an examination of two successful instances in college elementary Chinese. The respective advantages and disadvantages of both flipped and traditional classroom are highlighted.


Presenter(s): Shengli Feng and Weiping Wu, Chinese University of Hong Kong; Yongping Zhu, University of Notre Dame

Trinitarian Grammar in Teaching Chinese as an L2

This panel discusses a new pedagogical model: Trinitarian Grammar which combines structure of 200 types of sentences with their function and context
as an integrated unit in teaching. The new method
of teaching will help students learn the structure, function, and context simultaneously and use the pattern correctly in communication.


#notredame at #actfl15 conference

A photo posted by CSLC @ Notre Dame (@cslc_nd) on Nov 23, 2015 at 6:14am PST