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Special Sessions

9:00 AM – 10:00 AM1. From community college to grad school: tools for success
10:00 AM – 11:00 AM2. Reciprocal Empowerment to Re-Humanize Speech-Language-Communication-Hearing Sciences: Lessons from the 1st Cycle of the NSF-Research Experience for Undergraduates
12:00 PM – 1 PM3. Sharing Lessons learned: The CUNY Initiative on Emergent Bilingual
2:20 PM – 3:20 PM4. Identifying and eliminating discrimination based on accent or dialect from the classroom
3:20 PM – 4:20 PM5. Translingual Approaches to Writing: Combatting Interlocking Systems of Oppression
4:20 PM – 5:20 PM6. CLASP Workshop: Learning to Vocal Coach Students for Oral Communication

9:00 AM – 10:00 AM

From community college to grad school: tools for success

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ORGANIZERS: Rawan Hanini, Brooklyn College, Jenny Ortega, Brooklyn College, Mariana Vasilita, Brooklyn College

STUDENTS! Are you curious about grad school or already planning on pursuing a graduate degree, but don’t know how and where to start? Do you feel uncertainty about whether what you have on your application is going to be enough or not? Do you need more guidance on what this journey looks like, and what you can, or MUST, do in order to make yourself stand out to the grad admissions committee? If yes, you are in the right place!!

Grad school applications can be very detailed and highly competitive. If you are a student who is currently applying or is considering applying to grad school in the future, join our session to learn from current master candidates (all former CUNY students) about how they got into their programs and what challenges they faced. You will also be able to chat with those students and ask them any broad or specific questions you may have about this process. 

In this session, we will identify and discuss the tools that will help you succeed and increase your chances of getting accepted! Such tools include academic performance, resumes, research opportunities, recommendation letters, personal statements, and more!!!

Join us on May 14 from 9:00-10:00 am to learn about all of this, and get some (hopefully all) of your questions and concerns answered!

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10:00 AM – 11:00 AM

Reciprocal Empowerment to Re-Humanize Speech-Language-Communication-Hearing Sciences: Lessons from the 1st Cycle of the NSF-Research Experience for Undergraduates

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ORGANIZERS: Isabelle Barrière, Molloy College, YVY Research Institute and CUNY Graduate Center, Jonathan Nissenbaum, CUNY Brooklyn College and Graduate Center, Margareth Lafontant, CUNY College of Staten Island

The proportion of students from minoritized populations in STEM-based language sciences has remained low: Black, Hispanic/Lx and American Indian students make up less than 10% of graduates in linguistics graduate programs and less than 30% in master’s and doctoral psychology programs (NSF, 2019; APA, 2010). These minoritized groups constitute less than 16% of students in speech-language pathology master’s programs and research doctorates in speech-language-hearing-communication-sciences and 10% of students in audiology clinical doctorates (CSD, 2015).  These demographic facts have several detrimental consequences including; a) underrepresentation of minoritized groups in graduate programs and among professionals (e.g., clinicians, educators) and researchers in speech-language-hearing-communication sciences fields; b) while theories aim to make scientific claims that generalize across populations, the bulk of research—despite growing awareness of the need for diversity—is still conducted on English and other majority languages. 

Recent discussions on how to diversify the fields of speech-language-hearing-communication sciences and ‘decolonize the curriculum’ have given rise to concepts such as students’ funds of knowledge (Marquez Kiyama & Rios-Aguilar, 2018), Cultural Competence and Humility (Foronda et al., 2016; Gregory, 2020) and the application of Critical Race Theory to Linguistics (e.g. Liggett, 2014, Charity Hudley, Mallinson & Bucholtz, in press).

We propose a new approach ‘Reciprocal Empowerment’– according to which the exchange of knowledge and skills between the program students/mentees and faculty members/mentors goes in both directions: mentors contribute to the academic and professional training of their mentees by enabling them to turn a research idea into an actual research project while mentees enable their mentors to expand and deepen the scope of their research by contributing their knowledge of a minoritized culture and/or language.

We will present different instructional strategies that were implemented during the first cycle of the ILLC-including successful ones and others that require improvements and lessons that both minoritized students and faculty members can draw from these for their own benefits, beyond the ILLC program.

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11:00 AM – 12:00 PM

Sharing Lessons learned: The CUNY Initiative on Emergent Bilingual 

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ORGANIZERS: Ivana Espinet, Professor, Kingsborough Community College; Gladys Aponte, CUNY Graduate Center, Graduate Student; Laura Ascenzi-Moreno, Professor of Bilingual Education and Bilingual Program Coordinator Brooklyn College; Cecilia M. Espinosa Associate Professor in the Department of Early Childhood/Childhood, Lehman College, CUNY; Luz Yadira Herrera, Assistant Professor, Teacher Education, CSU Fresno, Former Research Assistant & Advisor CUNY-NYSIEB; Maite Sánchez, Assistant Prof, Hunter College, Former Project Director & Advisor, CUNY-NYSIEB

This presentation shares the work of the CUNY Initiative on Emergent Bilinguals (CUNY-NYSIEB). The presentation will introduce the book “Translanguaging and Transformative Teaching for Emergent Bilingual Students” which provides an overview of how translanguaging, as a pedagogical framework, shaped the collaboration between CUNY faculty and students with administrators and educators in schools serving emerging bilinguals. The presenters will discuss how translanguaging pedagogy can help educators design transformative spaces to leverage students’ cultural and linguistic home practices in the classroom. They will share examples of how educators implemented the two CUNY-NYSIEB principals: using students’ bilingualism as a resource in their schooling and expanding schools’ linguistic landscapes to reflect students’ languaging practices. In addition, six of the authors will do four short presentations focusing on themes and chapters in the book: -Fostering bilingual reading identities: Drawing on classroom-based research done in one fourth grade and one kindergarten DLBE classroom, this work puts forth five principles that can guide teachers as they work to develop students’ bilingual reading identities. – Translanguaging in children’s literature shares examples of how educators incorporate bilingual texts, as well as texts that incorporate dynamic language practices, in literacy instruction. – Translanguaging in writing and literacy explores how teachers’ beliefs about the teaching of writing have profound implications for how children understand writing. It focuses on how a translanguaging lens shifts conceptions of writing instruction. -Interrogating language ideologies in the primary grades describes how a group of third graders from a bilingual school engaged as bilingual language ethnographers in observing and analyzing the language practices of themselves and their families and communities. This process of collaborative inquiry about languaging prompted students and teachers to challenge monoglossic approaches to bilingual education.

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2:20 PM – 3:20 PM

Identifying and eliminating discrimination based on accent or dialect from the classroom

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ORGANIZERS: Carlos deCuba, Kingsborough Community College; Poppy Slocum, LaGuardia; Laura Spinu, Kingsborough Community College

In this workshop, we will examine linguistic discrimination in the classroom. Conscious or unconscious biases against speakers of “nonstandard” varieties of English are often reflected in our teaching practices, to the detriment of students. Do your syllabus or grading rubrics reference use of “standard English” or “appropriate grammar”? Have you ever deducted points of an assignment due to the presence of linguistic structures that are considered acceptable in a non-standard dialect? If so, what are the consequences for your students? Are there any alternatives? In this workshop, participants will learn about linguistic discrimination and identify ways to move away from approaches that unfairly penalize speakers of “nonstandard” varieties of English without sacrificing academic rigor. Instead, we recommend an asset-based approach which recognizes the value of all language varieties.

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3:20 PM – 4:20 PM

Translingual Approaches to Writing: Combatting Interlocking Systems of Oppression

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ORGANIZERS: Missy Watson (City College), Marina Palenyy (City College), Andrew Heerah (City College)

Abstract: As three teachers working to challenge systemic racism in adopting a translingual approach, we have experienced in our classrooms various degrees of success and failure. In addition to facing a barrage of constraints, including institutional expectations of and policies about student writing, we continue to struggle to chip away at racialized attitudes that are held about language much less adequately dismantle the racist practices and systems in which we participate. In this panel, we examine the affordances, challenges, and limitations of working to challenge dominant attitudes about language held by students. While the classroom is not the only or even ideal space to combat racism, we believe we, as teachers of writing, can and should work to combat raciolinguistic ideologies in the classroom and beyond. This panel provides three different pedgogical accounts showcasing strategies for antiracist translingual pedagogy.

Proposal: With the 2011 publication of Horner et al.’s “Language Difference in Writing: Toward a Translingual Approach,” teacher scholars in the field of composition and rhetoric have increasingly begun adopting a translingual pedagogical approach wherein students’ language differences are treated as assets to tap into rather than as deficits to eradicate. While it’s worth celebrating this progress, the editors and contributors of Racing Translingualism have recently argued that teachers adopting this approach should be careful to likewise integrate tenets of antiracist pedagogy. The following presentations illustate the fruits and challenges of such a pedagogical approach.

Adopting Antiracist Translingual Praxis: How, Why, and What’s Standing in the Way

After defining antiracist translingual praxis, panelist 1 examines challenges her FYC students faced when being taught through this approach to writing. Her students welcomed the chance to challenge their own monolingualist thinking but struggled to rework their writing processes and styles. The genres and rhetorical practices honed in pre-college contexts, students expressed, made their efforts to write across languages and modes feel “inauthentic.” Panelist 1 illustrates the challenges of “doing dispositions” (Lee and Jenks) and argues we treat “disposition work” as invaluable yet far from ideal given the many pressures to comply with standards.

Power Dynamics and Identity Politics: Teaching Language Attitudes in the HS Classroom

Panelist 2 interrogates the challenges of applying an antiracist translingual approach while teaching a high school college-prep course. She questions: In a class that is designed to standardize, how might teachers implement a study of rhetoric and language that would open up space for linguistic diversity and for examining raciolinguistic ideologies? How might teachers revise assessment to acknowledge and award language differences? Since fighting for linguistic freedom is not a cause to quit the profession, she argues, teachers must strike a balance between idealism and the harsh policies of our English-Only national climate.

Feminist-Antiracist-Translingual Pedagogies in First-Year Composition 

This paper draws on Audre Lorde’s notion of “broadening the joining” to consider how the shared focus on intersectionality in feminism, antiracism, and translingualism can help form meta awareness for students in college composition. Panelist 3 exemplifies that it is imperative for students to understand how racism and sexism operate in hegemonic systems that extend into language bias. He argues for feminist-antiracist-translingual pedagogical practices to be taken in the classroom to further the transformative learning process.

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4:20 PM – 5:20 PM

CLASP Workshop: Learning to Vocal Coach Students for Oral Communication

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ORGANIZERS: Dr. Nancy Bandiera, (LAGCC), Facilitator, President of CLASP (CUNY League of Active Speech-Communication Professors); Dr. Patricia Sokolsky (LAGCC) Facilitator, CLASP Officer; Dr. Cheyenne Seymour (BCC) Facilitator, CLASP Sponsor); Omar Abdelrahman (BC), Demonstrator, Persuasive Speech Winner (November CLASP 2020)

Would you like to journey through a fun exploration to improve your students’ vocal delivery in oral communication, especially public speaking? If so, come join us and relive being a student! We tell our students to practice. However, do they know HOW TO practice? In this workshop, you will learn techniques of dynamic vocal delivery that produce natural, spontaneous, and conversational qualities while orally presenting prepared text. Learning is fun so be prepared to laugh at yourself and with others laughing with you not at you!

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