Language research and resources
I have been an assistant professor at Pukyong National University (부경대학교) in Busan, Korea, since 2020, in the Department of English Language & Literature. Previously, I was an EFL professor at Korea University for over four years in the foreign language department. I previously worked at the Korea University’s Center for Teaching and Learning, and before that, at Hanyang University.
I studied at the University of Illinois (Urbana-Champaign), where I received an M.A. in Linguistics, and M.A. in TESOL, and a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology (focusing on psycholinguistics).
My research interests cover cognitive grammar, psycholinguistics, and phonology. I have particularly worked on the following issues.
- Applied & theoretical phonology, English pronunciation, pronunciation pedagogy
- Definite & indefinite articles and bare nouns (or “delimiters” as I prefer to call them)
- Discourse connectors and coherence in writing
- Stress patterns in learning English
My work in language pedagogy has focused on the following.
- Cognitive grammar
- Delimiters – a/an, the, bare nouns (so-called definite articles)
- Pronunciation teaching
- Teaching academic writing
- The impact of English medium instruction (EMI) on Korean university education
A Cognitive Approach
My approach to language pedagogy and linguistics is based on the following.
Empirical research. Pedagogy and language science crucially depend on scientific proof and a real-world basis.
Cognition. Language developed from human cognitive faculties, so my approach is essentially cognitive. My work is grounded in cognitive linguistics and psycholinguistics. Thus, it is empirically based, and open to insights from other theories.
I am available for workshops or special lectures on topics such as these.
Communicative and interactive teaching methods are known to be more effective than traditional methods. This can be better implemented when we look to educational psychology and cognitive linguistics for insights.
A/an, the, bare noun?
Definite / indefinite articles and bare nouns are the bane of many learners and teachers. My research on this, from cognitive semantic perspectives, makes possible more intuitive and sensible approaches to teaching, explaining, and practicing these grammatical juggernauts. My research is based on cognitive linguistics, particularly schema theory in cognitive psychology, and on pedagogical and corpus based research. I present it not so much as a grammatical system, but as a mea ing based system; not based on rules, but based on semantic and pragmatic principles.
Various aspects of academic writing for college students, graduate students, and teachers. This includes writing across the disciplines, research methods, coherence, paraphrasing, citation and referencing.
Linguistics and Learning Psychology
Teachers can benefit from various practical and research based insights from empirical and cognitive linguistics, as well as from educational psychology. This includes learning strategies, motivation, language acquisition, classroom interaction, and how grammar works based on cognitive principles.
Why linguistics and psychology
Many learners and teachers suffer from wrong notions that can hinder learning. I just need to try harder. Just need more motivation. I’m too right-brained. My MBTI type is not right for this. It worked for someone else. Eskimos have zillions of words for snow. We only use ten percent of our brains. All nonsense.
Better teaching and learning come from understanding what really works. I first studied linguistics so I could be better at learning languages. This took me on a long path to all kinds of linguistic theories and cognitive psychology. These insights can help other teachers and learners as well.
Born: Denver, Colorado. Grew up in Amarillo, Texas
College: Purdue University (B.A., German)
Graduate School: University of Illinois — M.A., Linguistics; M.A., TESOL (Teaching English as a Second/Other Language, or applied linguistics); Ph.D., Educational Psychology; doctoral research focus: psycholinguistics
Residing in Busan, Korea with my wife and son.
Cognitive grammar / cognitive linguistics
Writing studies, academic writing
English medium instruction