Dr Anna-Maria Ramezanzadeh is a language researcher and curriculum developer. She received her doctorate in Education, focussing on Arabic Applied Linguistics, from the University of Oxford’s Department of Education, along with her MSc in Applied Linguistics and Second Language Acquisition, and a bachelor’s degree in Arabic and Persian from the Faculty of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies.
She is currently working at the Department of Education to conduct a review of existing research on the teaching and learning of the Arabic language, having also produced research for the British Council and the AHRC Creative Multilingualism project. She has taught Arabic at undergraduate and graduate levels at the University of Oxford and has experience in designing curricula for in-person and online Arabic language programs.
- Ramezanzadeh, A. M. (2021). Motivation and multiglossia: Exploring the learning of Arabic in UK schools [PhD thesis]. University of Oxford. https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:2135e20b-1a02-41a9-9a1f-b21b03bd6d14/files/d9019s2655
- Ramezanzadeh, A. M. (2016). One Size Fits All? An Analysis of Heritage and Non-Heritage Language Learner Performance in GCSE Arabic. British Council. https://www.britishcouncil.org/sites/default/files/an_analysis_of_heritage_and_non-heritage_language_learner_performance_in_gcse_arabic.pdf
Athina is a Research Officer working on TalkTogether: Supporting Oral Language Development.
The project investigates children’s oral language in multilingual urban poor contexts, with an aim to develop and evaluate an intervention programme for kindergarten classes. TalkTogether is an international collaboration led by Prof. Sonali Nag and involves academic and non-academic partners in India.
Athina completed her PhD in Applied Linguistics at the University of Cambridge being awarded a PhD Studentship from the Department of Theoretical and Applied Linguistics. Before her PhD, Athina obtained a MA in Linguistics from the Radboud University Nijmegen, in the Netherlands. During her MA studies, she did an internship at the University of Amsterdam where she was involved in testing bilingual children and used the data to write her MA thesis on the occurrence of cross-linguistic influence in the acquisition of grammatical gender by Greek-Dutch bilingual children. She also worked as a student assistant for three months at the Center for Language and Speech Technology of the Radboud University of Nijmegen with her task being the preparation of a literature overview of the indicators investigated and reported in the literature to predict L2 oral proficiency, as well as, a review of the systems (manual and automatic) used to evaluate speaking proficiency. She holds a BA in Greek Philology from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece. During her BA, she also spent an academic year at the University Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona, Spain as a student being awarded an Erasmus scholarship. Finally, she has a CELTA (Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) and has some teaching experience with children and adults in various settings (immigrant populations, undergraduates, foreign and repatriated students).
In her previous research, she investigated age (of onset) and first language effects on the acquisition of English grammar (focusing on finiteness) by Chinese and Russian child learners in a minimal input EFL (English as a Foreign Language) context. During her current role, she is involved in various research projects within TalkTogether all focusing on shedding light on child oral language development of (Kannada-speaking) children and/or aiming to support their oral language development through interventions.
Her research interests involve child (second) language acquisition with a particular interest in the development of morphosyntax, the factors both linguistic and contextual that shape it, and the support of oral language development through classroom interventions to help children be ‘readier’ for literacy and school.
- ‘Age in child L2 acquisition: The case of finiteness’ (In collaboration with Theodora Alexopoulou, Henriette Hendriks, Ianthi Maria Tsimpli, University of Cambridge). Paper presented at the EuroSLA 28 conference, Munster, Germany, September 5-8, 2018.
- ‘The acquisition of finiteness in English by Chinese and Russian speaking children: the impact of age’ (In collaboration with Theodora Alexopoulou, Henriette Hendriks, Ianthi Maria Tsimpli, University of Cambridge). Paper presented at the workshop: ‘Age effects in bilingual language acquisition’ in Poznan, Poland, March 7-8, 2019.
- ‘The acquisition of finiteness in English by Chinese and Russian speaking children: the impact of L1 (In collaboration with Theodora Alexopoulou, Henriette Hendriks, Ianthi Maria Tsimpli, University of Cambridge). Paper presented at the workshop: ‘Tenselessness II’ in Lisbon, Portugal, October 3-4, 2019.
- Age in child L2 acquisition: The case of finiteness (In collaboration with Theodora Alexopoulou, Henriette Hendriks, Ianthi Maria Tsimpli, University of Cambridge). Poster presented at the Lead summer school for L2 acquisition, University of Tübingen, Germany, July 23-27, 2018.
- Age in child L2 acquisition: The case of finiteness (In collaboration with Theodora Alexopoulou, Henriette Hendriks, Ianthi Maria Tsimpli, University of Cambridge). Poster presented at the School on Experimental and Corpus Linguistics, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece, September 25-27, 2018.
Daniela is a post-doctoral researcher within the Learning for Families through Technology (LiFT) project at the Department of Education. Within this project, Daniela is responsible for leading on the collection, analysis and reporting of a learning app data generated by users. In this role, Daniela contributes to key components of the LiFT research programme and assists project investigators in developing a research agenda aimed at evaluating the educational content of learning apps and carrying out research to investigate language learning potential and parental engagement in using learning apps.
Before joining the Department of Education, Daniela was a doctoral student at the Department of Psychology and Language Sciences, Division of Language and Cognition, supervised by Dr. Elizabeth Wonnacott. Her work lies at the intersection between learning, memory, and language and investigates key questions for literacy learning and instruction. She designed and carried out learning experiments that focused on the contribution of statistical learning processes to children’s learning of spelling patterns. This research was a continuation of her MSc Language Sciences project, also carried out at UCL’s Division of Language and Cognition.
Samara, Singh & Wonnacott (2019). Statistical learning and spelling: Evidence from an incidental learning experiment with children. Cognition, Volume 182, 2019, Pages 25-30, ISSN 0010-0277, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cognition.2018.09.005.
Singh, Samara & Wonnacott (accepted for publication in the Journal of Memory and Language). Statistical and explicit learning of graphotactic patterns with no phonological counterpart: Evidence from an artificial lexicon study with 7–8-year-olds and adults. Preprint: https://psyarxiv.com/8px7n/.
Sophie Booton is a research officer working on the LiFT project.
The Learning for Families through Technology (LiFT) project is a collaboration between Ferrero international and three research groups in the Department of Education: Applied Linguistics, Learning and New Technologies, and Families, Effective Learning, and Literacy. The project aims to examine key questions about children’s learning with technology, with a focus on language and literacy skills.
Within the project, Sophie is investigating vocabulary development in children with and without English as an Additional Language. Sophie’s research interests lie in children’s cognitive and emotional development, particularly in in how areas of development interact to affect children’s learning and well-being.
Before joining the Department of Education, Sophie studied for her PhD in Psychology at the University of Sheffield. Her doctoral research in collaboration with Dr Daniel Carroll focused on the impact of emotional states on children’s self-control. Prior to her PhD, Sophie gained a MEd on the Mind, Brain and Education programme at Harvard Graduate School of Education, and a BA in Experimental Psychology from the University of Oxford.