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2021-22 Discourses and Dialogues, Panel #3: New Frontiers in Education Research

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Hosted by The Center For Research and Creative Activities (CRCA)

Please join us on February 17, 4 pm - 5 pm for the third panel in our Discourses and Dialogues: Salem State Faculty Discuss Current Research and Creative Activities Series, "New Frontiers in Education Research," featuring Professors Christina Cassano, Elizbeth Duclos-Orsello, and Tanya Rodrigue.

Christina Cassano is a professor in the childhood education and care department at Salem State University. She graduated from Boston University with a degree in literacy and language development. Her research interests include early literacy and language development with an emphasis on fostering receptive and expressive vocabulary knowledge in early childhood.

Prior to coming to Salem State University, Christina was a K-8 literacy specialist. She also has more than 10 years of experience as an early childhood teacher. Her project, “Do you Know that Word?” examines the relationship between word familiarity and phonological awareness using a computer-based assessment. This experimental, within-subjects study leverages an online, dynamic, patent-pending assessment tool, the “Smart” Phonological Awareness Assessment (Smart PA Assessment), to test the role of word familiarity in preschoolers’ PA achievement.

Elizabeth Duclos-Orsello is the chair and professor of interdisciplinary studies and coordinator of American Studies. She is an affiliated faculty member with the Center for Economic Development/ Sustainability and was the founding faculty fellow for service-learning at Salem State University. She holds a B.A. from Connecticut College in history and sociology-based human relations and a Ph.D. in American Studies from Boston University. Her research and teaching interests explore questions of social justice, issues of identity-formation, and struggles for voice and power including the construction and experience of "community," ethnic and immigrant studies/literature, gender studies, cultural geography, service-learning, and social and cultural history.

Her book, "Teaching American Studies: The State of the Classroom as the State of the Field," studies the state of the field from the perspective of the classroom by showcasing the work of instructors who are creating new strategies, new pedagogies, and innovative approaches to American Studies work. Teaching American Studies is a resource for faculty new to teaching American Studies, a springboard for those seeking to renew or transform their current courses, and a touchstone for those wishing to include elements of American Studies theories, practices, or scholarship into traditional disciplinary classes.

Tanya Rodrigue is an associate professor of English and the coordinator of the Writing Intensive Curriculum (WIC) Program at Salem State University. She has her Ph.D. in composition and cultural rhetoric from Syracuse University and her M.A. in English from the University of Massachusetts, Boston. Her research interests include sonic rhetoric, digital rhetoric, composition theory, composition pedagogy, and Writing Across the Discipline/Writing in the Disciplines.

Her project, "Soundwriting: A Guide to Making Audio Projects," teaches students how to activate critical listening skills, employ sound-based rhetorical tools, and compose with sound in a variety of genres—including and beyond podcasts. It works to provide students with a strong understanding of the skills, abilities, composing processes, and rhetorical tools needed for sound writing, as well as an understanding of why sound matters. Further, "Soundwriting: A Guide to Making Audio Projects," broadly teaches students about writing, rhetoric, and communication as well as 21st Century Literacies and Multimodal Literacies.

Read more and access the event Zoom link.


Learn more about the Center for Research and Creative Activities. All Salem State University students, faculty, and staff are invited to email their research to be featured by the CRCA:

When 5:00pm
Evea Raye

For access and accommodation information, visit our page on access or email

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