College of Arts and Sciences

Faculty News

The Center for Open Educational Resources for Language Learning has given Assistant Professor Munia Cabal Jiménez (WIU Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures) a Badge as "OER Master Creator" for her contribution to the "Empowering Learners of Spanish" (ELS) collection. ELS is a collection of activities based on critical pedagogies, and it serves to introduce students to a range of concepts in sociolinguistics and critical inquiry into language ideologies. ELS is published by The Center for Open Education Resources for Language Learning (COERLL) at the University of Texas at Austin and it is funded by the U.S. Department of Education. This collection of activities has reached more than 250 students per year in institutions such as Western Illinois University and University of Oregon, in addition to K-12 workshops in Illinois, Oregon and Texas, and  Iowa. At WIU, these activities have been used to teach SPAN 320 "Spanish for Heritage Speakers" in both campuses. These activities have also allowed to fully teach this class using Open Source materials, at no cost to WIU students. The ELS project developers are Munia Cabal Jiménez (Western Illinois University); Claudia Holguín Mendoza (Romance Languages, University of Oregon/UC Riverside); Robert Davis (Romance Languages, University of Oregon); Julie Weise (History, University of Oregon) and Kelley León Howarth (Romance Languages, University of Oregon).

Dr. Cabal presented on one of the leading round-tables at the 5th Symposium of Spanish as a Heritage Language in the US (April 5th-7th, University of Iowa) titled "Language ideologies and practical strategies to incorporate critical pedagogical approaches in Spanish as a Heritage Language classes". In collaboration with Dr. Claudia Holguín (U of Oregon/UC Riverside) and Sergio Loza (Ph.D. Candidate, University of Arizona).