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María-Jesús Plaza

María-Jesús Plaza

Office: EA3018
Phone: 403.440.5965
E-mail: mplaza@mtroyal.ca

Associate Professor María-Jesús Plaza has been the Coordinator of Spanish in the Department of Languages and Cultures at MRU since 2001. She holds a "Licenciatura en Filología Anglogermánica" and a Masters in Education from the University of Barcelona, Spain. Before moving to Calgary she taught English and French as foreign languages at the high school level in Spain and Spanish at the university level in the United States. As a Fulbright Scholar she started her graduate studies in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at the University of Minnesota (USA) where she obtained a Masters of Arts Degree and a PhD. Her PhD research on "Language and Cultural Identity among high school students" was granted an International award from the Catalan Government (Spain) in 1999.

María-Jesús has given numerous presentations at regional, national and international conferences in the areas of teaching Spanish as a second language and sociolinguistics. She has also been providing in-service workshops for Spanish teachers at the Cervantes Institute and at the different schools boards from the province. She has done consulting services for Alberta Learning and she is a Language Assessor for the CBE (Calgary Board of Education). At MRU María-Jesús has been involved in the development of new courses for the Major in Spanish and has put together assessment tasks to evaluate the proficiency level of students coming to the program with prior Spanish knowledge and new graduates.

Her research interests lie in the area of second language acquisition, teaching practices and sociolinguistics.

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