Bio: Carmen Taleghani-Nikazm is Professor in the Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures. She teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in applied linguistics and German language and culture. As director of the German undergraduate language instruction, Carmen supervises and trains Graduate Teaching Associates who teach German language courses. Carmen’s research explores the relationship between talk (i.e., spoken language) and social interaction and linguistic choices speakers make in conversations in relation to aspects of social context and speakers’ knowledge and understanding. Carmen also applies her research findings to different learning contexts such as the German language classroom, teacher education and second language use.
Teaching philosophy: To help my students develop analytical skills and critical thinking, intercultural competence, to become informed and scientifically literate, and to gain employable knowledge and skills for their future career and life as global citizens.
On being a mentor: I know that the first year of teaching as a new instructor can be overwhelming. I wish to help new teachers with finding resources, with ideas to better navigate teaching, and to be there to talk to someone if they wish to exchange ideas and talk about topics related to their teaching.
Rewarding moment: When my students demonstrate that they have learned and apply the knowledge to other contexts. When I see the excitement and interest in my students' faces when they are involved in group projects.
Best teaching advice received or given: Be a "reflective teacher."
Advice for new faculty: There is no “one-time teaching recipe." Try to gain theoretical knowledge and practical experience that help you become a reflective practitioner.