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Korean Club Hosts Third Annual Korean Thanksgiving BBQ Party

On Sunday, October 1st, the Boise State Korean Club hosted its third annual Korean Thanksgiving BBQ Party. The group provided a large feast of authentic Korean foods with about 120 Boise State students and faculty members in attendance. Participants learned about Korean Thanksgiving (Chuseok, 추석, in Korean) and how to play traditional Korean games.

2017 World Languages Picnic

Thank you to all the World Languages students, faculty and staff that attended our department picnic on September 21st.

We were lucky enough to have the sun join us for a fun afternoon of delicious food and games!

Adrian Kane Participates in “The Sun Also Rises” Panel during Annual Hemingway Festival in Ketchum, Idaho

Five faculty members participated in the annual Hemingway Festival in Ketchum, Sept. 8-10.  Mac Test, Adrian Kane and Stacey Guill created a panel to discuss aspects of Hemingway’s “The Sun Also Rises,” and Mitch Wieland and Clyde Moneyhun led discussions of the novel. For more information, visit:

Kelly Arispe Presents Paper at EUROCALL Conference

Kelly Arispe

Kelly Arispe

Assistant Professor of Spanish
World Languages
Kelly Arispe presented a paper at the EUROCALL conference in Southampton, England, on Aug. 25. The title of her presentation was “Meeting the advanced-level oral proficiency challenge with ubiquitous technology and performance-based assessments,” and reflects her research and pedagogical innovation with advanced level students in the Spanish program.

Jason Herbeck Publishes Chapter in “Entre-Textes: Dialogues littéraires et culturels”

Photo of Jason Herbeck.

Jason Herbeck

Associate Professor
Department of World Languages
College of Arts and Sciences

Jason Herbeck recently published a chapter in a pedagogical anthology titled Entre-Textes: Dialogues littéraires et culturels. Published by Routledge, Entre-Textes introduces advanced students of French to the richness of the Francophone world through literature from the Middle Ages to the 21st century.

The course anthology is divided into 14 modules, each of which pairs a classical text with a modern one. Students are guided to read works from different periods of time and cultural origin and consider how these echo, complement or question each other. Through comparing and contrasting the texts, students are encouraged to develop a new approach to reading literature while simultaneously reinforcing linguistic and cultural competencies.

The chapter written by Herbeck, co-authored with Margaret Gray from Indiana University, examines the river as a metaphor for identity in canonical French writer Marcel Proust’s 1913 Du Côté de chez Swann (Swann’s Way, the first volume of In Search of Lost Time) and Guadeloupean Édouard Glissant’s 1958 novel, “La Lézarde” (The Ripening).

Heike Henderson Presents at the American Comparative Literature Association Convention (ACLA) in the Netherlands

Portrait of Heike Henderson

Heike Henderson

World Languages
College of Arts and Sciences

German professor Heike Henderson presented a paper at the American Comparative Literature Association (ACLA) convention held July 6-9 in Utrecht in the Netherlands.

The title of Henderson’s presentation was “The World and/in the City: Jakob Arjouni’s Frankfurt.” It was part of the Worlding Crime Fiction Seminar, which met over three days and discussed presentations by scholars from Australia, China, Laos, Ireland, England, Denmark, Sweden, Holland, Germany and the United States.

Fatima Cornwall Invited to Participate in ACTFL Portuguese Expert Panel

Fatima Cornwall portrait.

Fatima Cornwall

Spanish Language Coordinator
World Languages
College of Arts and Sciences

People standing in front of a famous statue.In June, Fatima Cornwall was invited by the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) to be part of a 12-person expert panel for a standard-setting project in Arlington, Virginia.

This work group, comprised of linguists, professors, translators and U.S. Air Force officers, was tasked with creating scoring protocol for a test of Portuguese-European listening proficiency. The test is being developed by the Defense Language Institute on behalf of the U.S. government.

Boise State Receives National Humanities Grant to Document, Celebrate Latino Culture

Boise State University’s Casita Nepantla has received a $150,000 matching grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) to document the art and cultural expression of Latinos in rural and urban communities throughout Idaho.

The project, which is part of NEH’s Creating Humanities Communities, is ONE OF ONLY 245 HUMANITIES PROJECTS FUNDED ACROSS THE NATION.

“I am pleased and feel honored that we have received this NEH grant. It will provide a great opportunity for this institution to demonstrate its commitment to the humanities and to engaging in cultural research about Latinos in Idaho,” said Alicia Garza, an associate professor of Spanish at Boise State and director of Casita Nepantla: A Latino Space at Boise State University.

The project, titled “Latino Neighborhoods and Rasquache Private and Public Expressions of Cultural Identity,” begins with mapping the neighborhoods in southern Idaho and southeastern Oregon with significant Latino populations. Through oral histories and still photographs, Casita Nepantla plans on preserving the ephemeral material culture and lived experience of the region’s most rapidly growing demographic.

“We aim to document, interpret and celebrate the homemade, rasquache cultural expressions of the region’s residents,” Garza said. (To be rasquache is to posit a bawdy, spunky consciousness, to seek to subvert and turn ruling paradigms upside down, as explained by renowned Chicano scholar Tomás Ybarra-Frausto.)

Although the Latino population in Idaho is growing, Garza explained that there is a dearth of scholarly research that explores the important contributions Latino creatives are making to Idaho’s contemporary cultural scene. This critical absence inhibits greater community cohesion between the general public and the fastest growing demographic in the American west.

Casita Nepantla is partnering with the university’s Division of Research and Economic Development, College of Arts and Sciences, University Advancement, professor Leslie Durham from theatre arts, associate professor Dora Ramirez from English, and photographer Allison Corona, as well as community partners including the Idaho State Historical Museum, the Cabin, the Boise City Department of Arts and History, and the College of Western Idaho for this project.

Once completed, Casita Nepantla will evaluate the project’s scholarly, community and institutional impacts using qualitative data gathered from its audiences, partner organizations, and media coverage as well as quantitative data on website access, fundraising and participation.

Kelly Arispe Presents at 34th annual Convention for Computer Assisted Language Instruction Consortium in Flagstaff, Arizona

Portrait of Kelly ArispeKelly Arispe recently presented a paper with co-author Jack Burston of Cyprus University of Technology at the 34th annual Convention for Computer Assisted Language Instruction Consortium in Flagstaff, Arizona.

The presentation, “Bridging the Gap from Intermediate to Advanced Level Foreign Language Competency in American Colleges and Universities: The Contribution of CALL,” stems from their meta-analysis of studies in computer assisted language learning and exposes the fact that almost all of the research has been geared towards beginner learners.

Their presentation focused on the scarce 17 studies that did include intermediate learners and found that most fell short because of oversights stemming from foreign language pedagogy. As a result, they suggested a pedagogical framework that integrates proficiency-based assessments, learner autonomy and instructional technology to appropriately scaffold intermediate learners towards improved linguistic competence. Specifically, Arispe reported on the results from the 241 oral proficiency interviews that have been conducted in the Spanish program over the last four years as compelling evidence that language learners at the 300-level are in dire need of augmented opportunities for language practice outside of the classroom.  

Instructional technology, if implemented appropriately, is one way to leverage augmented language practice.

Annual Treasure Valley High School Japanese Speech Contest Held in Meridian

Portrait of Tetsuya Ehara

Tetsuya Ehara

Department of World Languages
College of Arts and Sciences

The annual Treasure Valley High School Japanese Speech Contest was held on April 20 at Centennial High School in Meridian. The event, which was organized by Tetsuya Ehara and sponsored by Boise State’s Japan Club and the Consular Office of Japan in Portland, included Centennial and other area high school students.

The following organizations donated gifts in support of the event:

  • Consular office of Japan in Portland
  • BSU Football Office
  • BSU Marketing in Athletic Department
  • BSU Center for School Improvement & Policy Studies
  • BSU Department of World Languages
  • BSU Japan Club
  • Hosei University Football Team in Tokyo, Japan