Dr. Roger Gee Presents Keynote Address at Peru TESOL Association 29th Annual Convention

Holy Family University

On August 1, Roger Gee, Ph.D., professor and chair of the Doctor in Educational and Organizational Leadership program in Holy Family University’s School of Education, was a keynote speaker at the virtual Peru TESOL Association (Peru Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages Association) 29th Annual Convention. Peru TESOL Association is a non-profit organization of teachers of English in Peru that is an affiliate of the TESOL International Association.

Dr. Gee’s plenary address, entitled “Mobiles Phones and Video Music Tic Toc: Examining nouns as nominal premodifiers,” focused on the use of prenominal noun modifiers (PNMs) in the essays written by individuals who learned English as a second language. Though PNMs are not used in Spanish, they are an important feature of academic English.

“Recent corpus-based studies have identified a number of features of academic language that English learners need to be able to understand and use,” said Dr. Gee. “One of these is nouns that modify other nouns, as in school closure or home office. Spanish is a language that doesn't allow for nouns to modify other nouns, and there is some research that suggests Spanish speakers underuse this construction, which can be difficult to understand. For instance, if olive oil is oil made from olives, what is baby oil? In addition, there is sometimes a cross-linguistic influence from Spanish, as seen in the examples in the title of my talk. These factors were the motivation for this plenary address to Peruvian English language teachers.”

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