My research primarily investigates language learning and pedagogy in content-based instructional settings. Specific interests include cross-linguistic and plurilingual pedagogy, content and language integration, classroom interaction, peer collaboration, and the impact of societal and classroom environments on students’ engagement, identity, and holistic achievement.
Member of the Plurilingual Lab, Department of Integrated Studies in Education, McGill University.
Member of the Second Language Research Group, Concordia University.
PhD in Educational Studies, Language Acquisition, McGill University, Montreal, QC, Canada. Thesis Title: Learning across languages: Bilingual literacy and peer language learning strategies in French immersion.
MA in Second Language Education, McGill University, Montreal, QC, Canada. Thesis Title: Oral language use in dual immersion classrooms.
BA in English Literature and Spanish Literature, Washington University in St. Louis, St. Louis, Missouri, United States.
- Cross-linguistic approaches to bilingual and immersion education
- Strategy instruction
- Peer interaction
- Teacher scaffolding to promote collaborative language learning
- The influence of sociolinguistic context in bilingual classrooms
Interdisciplinary PhD in Language Acquisition
EDSL 711: Cross-linguistic Learning and Pedagogy (2020)
MA in Second Language Education
EDSL 651: Content-Based Language Teaching (2020, 2021)
EDSL 627: Instructed Second Language Acquisition (2018, 2019)
EDSL 632: Second Language Literacy Development (2018)
EDSL 640: Language Awareness: Theory and Practice (2017, 2019)
B.Ed. and Graduate Certificate in Pédagogie de l’Immersion française
EDSL 444 / 544: Laboratoire d’enseignement en FLS (2017, 2018)
EDSL 345 / 545: Enseignement du FLS: Immersion (2016, 2019, 2021)
EDSL 341 / 541: Littératie et littérature jeunesse en FLS (2015, 2016, 2017)
B.Ed. in Teaching English as a Second Language
EDSL 304: Sociolinguistics and Second Language Education (2018, 2019)
EDSL 305: Second Language Learning in Classroom Settings (2011, 2015, 2021)
EDSL 311: Pedagogical Grammar (2010, 2012)
EDSL 350: Essentials of English Grammar (2009, 2010)
EDSL 208: Expressive Writing (2009)
Only by request.
2020-2022. How do you transform one student into two teachers? A comparative study of immersion teacher education programs and their impact on teachers' awareness of content and language instruction. Role: Principal Investigator. Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, Insight Development Grant.
2020-2021. Professional Development Needs of Canadian French Immersion Teachers. Role: Principal Investigator. Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, Connections Program.
2021. Addressing the need for more qualified French immersion teachers through online access to a graduate certificate in French immersion pedagogy. Role: Principal Investigator. Entente Canada-Québec.
2021. A case study investigating the impact of an online immersion graduate certificate program on development of in-service teachers’ immersion-specific competencies. Role: Principal Investigator. Government of Ontario; Heritage Canada
2019-2020. Bilingual development in bilingual education. Role: co-Principal Investigator with Dr. Gigi Luk. McGill University International Institute of Education and Y.K. Pao School.
2019-2021. Course instructors' language awareness. Role: Principal Investigator. Social Sciences and Humanities Development Grants Program. McGill University
2016-2021. En français s'il vous plaît: Immersion students' French use during peer interaction. Role: Principal Investigator. Fonds de recherche du Québec-Société et Culture.
2018-2019. Raising children bilingually: Parents' attitudes, concerns, goals, and needs. Role: Collaborator with Dr. Linda Polka (co-PI), Dr. Krista Byers-Heinlein (co-PI), and Dr. Ruth Kircher (collaborator) . Supported by the Centre for Research on Brain, Language and Music.
Articles in Peer-Reviewed Journals
Davis, S., Ballinger, S., & Sarkar, M. (2021). More languages means more lights in your house. Illuminating the experiences of newcomer families in French immersion. Journal of Immersion and Content-Based Language Education, 9(2), 336-363.
Ballinger, S., Lau, S., & Quevillon Lacasse, C. (2020). Cross-linguistic pedagogy: Harnessing transfer in the classroom. The Canadian Modern Language Review, 76(4).
Ballinger, S., Brouillard, M., Ahooja, A., Kircher, R., Byers-Heinlein, K., & Polka, L. (2020). Intersections of official and family language policy in Quebec. Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development, DOI: 10.1080/01434632.2020.1752699
Ahooja, A., & Ballinger, S. (2019). Invisible experiences, muted voices, and the language socialization of Québec migrant-background students. International Journal of Bilingual Education and Bilingualism, DOI: 10.1080/13670050.2019.1699898
Davis, S., Ballinger, S., & Sarkar, M. (2019). Diverging perspectives on the inclusion of Allophone students in French immersion. Canadian Journal of Applied Linguistics, 22(2), 27–63.
Ballinger, S. (2017). Examining peer language use and investment in a distinct North American immersion context. International Multilingual Research Journal, 11(3), 184–198.
Ballinger, S., Lyster, R., Sterzuk, A., & Genesee, F. (2017). Context-appropriate crosslinguistic pedagogy: Considering the role of language status in immersion education. Journal of Immersion and Content-Based Language Education, 5(1), 30–57.
Palmer, D., Ballinger, S., & Peter, L. (2014). Classroom interaction in one-way, two-way, and indigenous immersion contexts [Special Issue]. Journal of Immersion and Content-Based Language Education, 2(2), 225–240.
Lyster, R., Quiroga, J., & Ballinger, S. (2013). The effects of biliteracy instruction on morphological awareness. Journal of Immersion and Content-Based Language Education, 1(2), 169–197.
Ballinger, S. (2013). Towards a cross-linguistic pedagogy: Biliteracy and reciprocal learning strategies in French immersion. Journal of Immersion and Content-Based Language Education, 1(1), 131–148.
Sato, M., & Ballinger, S. (2012). Raising language awareness in peer interaction: A cross-context, cross-method examination. Language Awareness 21(1–2), 157-179.
Ballinger, S., & Lyster, R. (2011). Student and teacher language use in a two-way Spanish/English immersion school. Language Teaching Research, 15(3), 289–306.
Lyster, R., & Ballinger, S. (2011). Content-based language teaching: Convergent concerns across divergent contexts.Language Teaching Research, 15(3), 279–288.
Lyster, R., Collins, L., & Ballinger, S. (2009). Linking languages through a bilingual read-aloud project. Language Awareness, 18, 366–383.
Ballinger, S., Quevillon Lacasse, C., & Lau, S. (Eds.). (2020). Targeting transfer: Cross-linguistic pedagogy in Canadian contexts [Special issue]. Canadian Modern Language Review, 76(4).
Sato, M., & Ballinger, S. (Eds.). (2016). Peer interaction and second language learning: Pedagogical potential and research agenda [Series: Language Learning and Language Teaching].Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
Lyster, R., & Ballinger, S. (Eds.). (2011). Content-based language learning [Special Issue]. Language Teaching Research,15(3).
Ballinger, S. (2020). Corrective feedback in content-based language instruction. In H. Nassaji & E. Kartchava (Eds.), The Cambridge handbook of corrective feedback in language learning and teaching.Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.
Oliver, R., Sato, M., Ballinger, S., & Pan, L. (2019). Content and language integrated learning: Acquiring Mandarin as a second language. In M. Sato & S. Loewen (Eds.), Evidence-based second language pedagogy: A collection of Instructed Second Language Acquisition studies (pp. 81–102). New York: Routledge.
Sato, M., & Ballinger, S. (2016). Understanding peer interaction: Research synthesis and directions. In M. Sato & S. Ballinger (Eds.), Peer interaction and second language learning: Pedagogical potential and research agenda.Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
Ballinger, S. (2015). Linking content, linking students: A cross-linguistic pedagogical intervention. In J. Cenoz & D. Gorter (Eds.), Multilingual education: New perspectives. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Contributions to Professional Journals:
Quevillon Lacasse, C., & Ballinger, S. (2020). Les approches interlinguistiques et l’enseignement pour favoriser les transferts langagiers en immersion française. Le Journal de l’Immersion, 42(1).
Selected Refereed Academic Conference Presentations
Ballinger, S., Brouillard, M., Ahooja, A., Kircher, R., Polka, L., & Byers-Heinlein, K. (
2020, August Postponed to August 2021 due to COVID-19). Revisiting interculturalism: Montreal families’ language policies towards official and heritage languages. The Multidisciplinary Approaches to Language Policy and Planning Conference. Montreal, QC.
Ballinger, S. (
2020, August Postponed to August 2021 due to COVID-19). Finding the language in history and geography: A teacher language awareness intervention for French subject teachers. Congress of the International Association of Applied Linguistics (AILA), Groningen, Netherlands.
Ballinger, S., & Bourassa, F. (
2020, March Canceled due to COVID-19). A Design-Based Intervention to Promote Peer Learning in French Immersion. Annual Meeting of the American Association of Applied Linguistics. Denver, CO.
Ballinger, S., Mitrikas, H., & Perez, C. (2019, November). “En français, s’il vous plaît”: Stratégies favorisant la collaboration et l’apprentissage réciproque du français. Congrès annuel de l’Association canadienne des professionnels de l’immersion (ACPI). Quebec City, QC.
Ballinger, S., & Ahooja, A. (2019, September). When twenty miles is a world away: Immersion students’ CAF in contrasting communities.Second Language Research Forum (SLRF). Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan.
Ballinger, S. (2019, March). Variation in immersion outcomes: The impact of sociolinguistic context on complexity, accuracy, and fluency.Annual meeting of the American Association for Applied Linguistics (AAAL). Atlanta, GA.
Ballinger, S. & Lyster, R. (2017, June). Considering language status in Canadian French immersion.In D. Tedick and T. Fortune (Chairs), Cross-context perspectives on translanguaging and bilingual/immersion education. International Symposium on Bilingualism. University of Limerick, Limerick, Ireland.
Ballinger, S. (2017, April). Sociolinguistic context and oral task performance. International Conference on Task-Based Language Teaching (TBLT). University of Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain.
Ballinger, S., Quevillon Lacasse, C., & Lau, S. (2019, June). The French-English connection: Cross-linguistic pedagogical interventions in Canadian contexts.With Melissa Blandford (Bishop’s University), Marie-France Côté (Université du Québec à Montréal), (Claude Quevillon Lacasse (Université du Québec à Montréal), Sunny Lau (Bishop’s University), Roy Lyster (McGill University), Robert Savage (University College London), and (Joël Thibeault (University of Regina). Annual meeting of the Canadian Association for Applied Linguistics (ACLA), University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC.
Palmer, D., & Ballinger, S. (2016, October). [Invited]. Context and translanguaging pedagogies. Invited symposium with M. Gort (Ohio State University), T. Hickey (University College Dublin), S. Johnson (New Mexico State University), & R. Lyster (McGill University). International Conference on Immersion Education (Center for Advanced Research on Language Acquisition). University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN.
Sato, M., & Ballinger, S. (2015, March). Understanding peer interaction: Research directions and pedagogical implications. Invited symposium with M. Baralt (Florida International University), A. Fernandez Dobao (University of Washington), Y. Gil-Berrio (Temple University), L. Gurzynski-Weiss (Indiana University), N. Iwashita (University of Queensland), Y. Kim (Georgia State University), T. Moranski (University of Pennsylvania), N. Storch (University of Melbourne), P. Toth (Temple University), & N. Ziegler (University of Hawaii at Manoa). Annual Meeting of the American Association of Applied Linguistics (AAAL). Toronto, ON.
Keynotes and Plenaries
Ballinger, S. (2012, April). Tear down these walls: Interventions to connect teachers, students, and languages in Quebec French immersion.Annual Meeting on English Language Teaching (MELT). L’École de langues, l’Université du Québec à Montréal, Montreal, QC.
Ongoing PhD Supervision
Alexa Savan Ahooja (since 2018). The L2 socialization of migrant background students in Quebec.
Marianne Barker (since 2018). Improving Canadian immigrants’ experiences of social integration within and beyond language programs
Katherine Hardin (incoming Fall 2020). Topic: Institutional ethnography of investment in Quebec's alpha-francisation programs.
Kensaku Ogata (since 2017). Japanese EFL teachers' self efficacy and burnout.
Lauren Schellenberg (since 2019). Cross linguistic awareness among French immersion teachers.
Ongoing MA Thesis Supervision
Roly Anidjar (since 2020). Topic: Form focused discovery learning
Xinyan Fang (since 2019) Faculty instructors' support for L2 learners’ academic writing at universities.
Andréanne Langevin (since 2019). Perceptions of school choice among Quebec families.
Austin Learning (since 2019).Supporting cross-lingusitic awareness of pre-service French as a second language teachers.
Damian Molinari Oppedisano (since 2020). Topic: Student language learning experiences in a context-based program.
Shiin Moon (since 2021). Raciolinguistic Socialization Process through Francisation Programs in Québec
Chen Xiong (since 2020). Topic: Family language policy among Chinese heritage language speakers in Montreal
MA Thesis Supervision, Completed Degrees
Aisha Abokraa (completed 2017). Authentic video materials in the ESL context: Teachers' considerations and students'
Alexa Ahooja (complete 2017). Peer Interaction in primary school Allophone students’ French language development: A potential pedagogical complement?
Faten Alzaid (completed 2018). Measuring the effect of the gamification of formative assessment on learners’ lexical performance and motivation in second language learning.
Stephen Davis (completed 2017). French immersion for Allophone students in Saskatchewan: Examining diverse perspectives.
Melissa Enns (completed 2018). Bridging the gap between theory and practice through blogging: Language teachers’ experiences with a research blog.
Mo Guy (completed 2017). The effectiveness of formative assessment at the tertiary level.
Yuhui Huang (completed 2019). Measuring the impact of peer feedback on pronunciation by L2 learners in the mobile- assisted learning context.
Yerim Lee (completed 2018). Listening to different stories from instructors and students: Examining written and audio feedback in graduate classrooms.
Hinako Takeuchi (completed 2018). Japanese high school students in international schools: The quest for bilingualism in Japan
Nicole Venegas Torres (completed 2016). Efficacy of elite bilingual education in Latin America: Reflecting on immigrants' experiences.
Shanshun Xu (completed 2020). The Cross-linguistic transfer of inflectional awareness from Chinese L1 to English L2.
Junping Zhang (completed 2020). Family language policy and heritage language maintenance: Parents’ and children’s beliefs and attitudes over the years.
Ballinger, S. (
2020, August Postponed to August 2021 due to COVID-19). Constructing language awareness for content (and language) instruction: A teacher training intervention for novice and experienced teachers. [Featured speaker.] Congress of the International Association of Applied Linguistics (AILA). Groningen, Netherlands.
Ballinger, S., & Haigh, C. (2019, December). Best practice for teaching oral language and literacy across languages. Invited talk for the Centre for Research on Brain, Language and Music (CRBLM) and Advanced Learning in Differentiation and Inclusion (ALDI) Conference for Quebec teachers, researchers, and administrators. Montreal, Quebec.
Ballinger, S. (2019, February). Translanguaging’s awkward adolescent phase. Invited talk for Plurilingual Lab Speaker Series. Concordia University, Montreal, Quebec.
Ballinger, S. (2019, February). Bringing theory to the classroom: Cross-linguistic and translanguaging pedagogy.Speaker Series: Department of Applied Language and Discourse Studies, Carleton University, Ottawa, Ontario.
Ballinger, S. (2018, February). Peer interaction for L2 learning: Possibilities, pitfalls, and practical approaches. Graduate Student Teaching Colloquium: Department of Languages, Literatures & Cultures, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec.
Ballinger, S. (2010, March). Cross-linguistic pedagogy in French immersion: A classroom study. In R. Lyster (Chair), Research perspectives on content-based second language instruction.[ Invited symposium.] Annual meeting of the American Association for Applied Linguistics (AAAL), Atlanta, GA.
Workshops and Outreach to Educators
Ballinger, S., & Quevillon Lacasse, C. (2020, February). Cross-linguistic pedagogy and teaching for transfer. Invited workshop for teachers’ pedagogical day professional development. Mountainview Elementary School, Riverside School Board. Otterburn Park, QC.
Ballinger, S., & Quevillon Lacasse, C. (2019, November). Cross-linguistic pedagogy and teaching for transfer in immersion. Invited pre-conference workshop for administrators and pedagogical consultants. Congrès annuel de L’Association canadienne des professionnels de l’immersion (ACPI). Quebec City, Quebec.
Ballinger, S., & Quevillon Lacasse, C. (2019, May). Cross-linguistic pedagogy and teaching for transfer. Invited talk. Annual Meeting of Principals. Riverside School Board, St-Hubert, Quebec.
Ballinger, S. (2019, May). Extending immersion students’ oral L2 production during peer interaction. Invited immersion teacher workshops. Content-Based Language Teaching (CBLT): Brazil Symposium. Sao Paulo, Brazil and Salvador, Brazil.