Applied Linguistics

The PhD Program in Applied Linguistics is within the College of Education in the Department of Teaching and Learning. In addition to our own research and teaching, we also help coordinate the TESOL Language and Linguistics Speaker Series and many of us are members of Graduate Students of Language at Temple (GSOLT). For more information about our department and activities see the webpages below:
Graduate Students of Language at Temple:
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Current Doctoral Candidates

Current Doctoral Students

Catie Duffield, 1st year doctoral student: My research interests include, but are not limited to, Foreign Language Anxiety, language assessments (speaking and listening) and communicative language teaching. I have a Master’s degree in Theoretical & Applied Linguistics from the University of the Balearic Islands in Spain and received my Bachelor’s Degree in Secondary Education: World Languages (Spanish) from Temple University. I taught English as a Foreign Language in Spain for 4.5 years to primary, secondary and adult learners. My teaching focused largely on conversation classes and preparation for high stakes English exams. Email:

Lu Han, 2nd year doctoral student: My research interests broadly includes Chinese as a second language listening assessment and authenticity in language teaching and learning. I have a Master’s Degree in TESOL from the University of Pennsylvania and a Bachelor’s Degree in Teaching Chinese as a Second Language from Northwest University (China). I have taught Chinese at college level and both Chinese and ESL to various language learners such as heritage learners and young learners.


Sarah Rawls, 2nd year doctoral student: My research interests include, but are not limited to, language assessment (especially speaking assessments), technology, second language development (SLD), and second language pedagogy. I have a MSeD in TESOL from Temple University and a B.A. in Asian Students from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. During my time at Temple, I have taught adult ESL in a variety of contexts in Philadelphia and taught EFL in China. Email:

Linlin Wang, 4th year doctoral student: My research interests include but are not limited to second/foreign language assessment (especially listening assessment), second language development, second language pedagogy, and multicultural educational issues. I have a Master’s Degree in TESOL from the University of Pennsylvania and a Bachelor’s Degree in Teaching Chinese as a Second Language from Bejing Language and Culture University. I have been a part-time English and Chinese teacher for five years, working with students with diverse backgrounds.

Lorraine Sova, doctoral student: My research interests include K-12 language assessment, emergent bilinguals in elementary schools (with a focus on literacy), and language education policy. In addition to being a graduate student, I am a test developer at Educational Testing Service in the English Language Learning division. I have an MFA in Creative Writing and am a certified K-5 elementary education and ESL teacher. Before coming to Temple, I taught graduate-level courses in literacy and bilingualism at Rider University as well as EFL in Poland; I was also a longtime editor of language-learning materials for kids and adults.

Past Doctoral Students

Headshot of Mark Emerick

Mark R. Emerick, Ph.D.
My research interests involve the ways in which beliefs, identity, and language policy facilitate and/or restrict ELLs’ opportunities to achieve college and career readiness. In particular, I apply critical educational and social theory to examine inequities in ELs’ access and opportunity to learn in career and technical education programs.


Emerick, M. R. (2019). Explicit teaching and authenticity in L2 listening instruction: University language teachers’ beliefs. System, 80, 107-119. doi:10.1016/j.system.2018.11.004 

Emerick, M. R., Hoffman, B. Y., & Kanno, Y. (2019). Teaching Hispanic restaurant workers: Translanguaging as culturally sustaining pedagogy. Anthropology and Education Quarterly. (Advanced online publication). doi:10.1111/aeq.12340 


Anastasia N. Sorokina, Ph.D: My research interests are bilingualism and cognition, second language acquisition, and sociolinguistics. I have worked on projects that investigated autobiographical bilingual memory, categorical perception of color terms, concrete lexicon by learners of English and Russian, acquisition of English (ESL writing), as well as Russian as an L2 (conversation), curriculum design for U.S. citizenship tests, and political discourse. I have a MA in Linguistics from University of Georgia where I taught “Introduction to Linguistics” and completed a MA thesis on dynamics of bilingual mental lexicon. Before coming to Temple I was a volunteer ESL Instructor.
My preferred contact is through email at the following address:

Elizabeth Hepford, Ph.D.: My research interests include second language acquisition/development, Dynamic Systems Theory, the Complexity, Accuracy and Fluency constructs, and Spanish language commodification. I have a Master’s Degree in TESOL from Arizona State University where my thesis topic was the acquisition of consonant clusters by Somali ESL learners. Before coming to Temple, I was an English Language Fellow in Shkoder, Albania, an ESL instructor in Puebla, Mexico and a Peace Corps volunteer in Arseniev, Russia.

Publications:  Hepford, E. (2015): Language for profit: Spanish–English bilingualism in Lowe’s Home Improvement, International Journal of Bilingual Education and Bilingualism


Brooke Y. Hoffman, Ph.D.:My research focuses on language ideologies, the integration of language and content in instruction in grades PK-16 and adult education, and the efficacy of teacher education programs, specifically for preservice and inservice teachers preparing to teach English learners in general education classrooms.  Previously, I taught English in Sichuan, China for 3 years and math/science to linguistically diverse students in a public middle school in Philadelphia for 10 years.  I am currently the coordinator of the ESL Certificate of Graduate Study and Bilingual/Bicultural Education Programs and a lecturer in the Department of Language, Literacy, and Sociocultural Education in the College of Education at Rowan University.  In addition, I provide professional development to area school districts, helping teachers more effectively address the strengths and needs of emergent bilinguals.



Hoffman, B. Y. (2015). Online responses to a multilingual Super Bowl ad: Is ‘America the Beautiful’ by any other language still America, the beautiful? International Journal of Multilingualism. doi:10.1080/14790718.2015.1094075

Kuriloff, P., Hoffman, B. Y., Jordan, W. J., Sutherland, D., & Ponnock, A. (April, 2019). Why teachers move: School context influences on teachers’ experiences. In C. R. Rinke & L. K. Mawhinney (Eds.), Opportunities and challenges in teacher recruitment and retention: Teachers’ Voices across the Pipeline. Charlotte, NC: Information Age Publishing, Inc.

Sara E.N. Kangas, Ph.D.: As a researcher, I investigate the largely unexplored interface between applied linguistics and special education with particular attention to ELLs with special needs’ opportunities for linguistic and academic development. I am interested in how these opportunities are driven by schools’ appropriation of macro education policies in special education and ESL. In conducting this line of research, my foremost goal is to ensure that the civil rights of ELLs with special needs’ are upheld through a quality research- and needs-based education.
My website: click here.

Kangas, S.E.N. (2014). When Special Education Trumps ESL: An Investigation of Service Delivery for ELLs with Disabilities. Critical Inquiry in Language Studies, 11(4), 273-306.
Kanno, Y., & Kangas, S.E.N. (2014). “I’m not going to be, like, for the AP”: English language learners’ limited access to advanced college-preparatory courses in high school. American Educational Research Journal, 51(5), 848-878.
Kangas, S.E.N. (2014). What can software tell us about political candidates?: A critical analysis of a computerized method for political discourse. Journal of Language and Politics, 41(1), 77-97.

Sarah Arva Grosik, Ed.D.: My research interests include teacher training, English language learners’ educational opportunities, educational policy issues, and co-teaching strategies. I currently serve as the Associate Director of Curriculum and Instruction for the English Language Programs at the University of Pennsylvania. Before coming to Temple, I taught EFL in a secondary school in Gabon as a Peace Corps volunteer, taught EFL at an English language institute in China, completed the Philadelphia Teaching Fellows program to become an ESL classroom teacher at the elementary level in the School District of Philadelphia, and taught adult ESL classes at Bucks County Community College