Languages and Cultures

Denise Minor, PhD

Spanish, EDSL, FLNG

Dr. Minor is from Pocatello, Idaho, but believes that she was supposed to have been born in Veracruz, Buenos Aires, Segovia or anywhere that Spanish is spoken. She began her professional life as a journalist but (in her mid-20s on a whim) moved to San Sebastian, Spain where she taught English in order to pay the bills. It was there that she realized that she loved both Spanish and teaching. Back in the U.S., she earned an MA in Spanish from San Francisco State and then a PhD in Spanish Linguistics from the University of California, Davis. Since 2007 she has been a professor at Chico State teaching some lower division classes as well as courses in linguistics such as Spanish Phonology, Spanish Linguistics, Spanish Teaching Methodology and Bilingualism in North America. As of Fall Semester 2015, she began teaching courses at the graduate level for the MA in Teaching International Languages program which has recently moved to the LANC Department.

Research interests for Prof. Minor include L2 teaching methodology, sociolinguistics, motivation, Spanish of the United States, code-switching, and language immersion programs. In 2014 she and Norma López-Burton published On Being a Language Teacher: a Personal and Practical Guide to Success with Yale University Press. Later this year (2016), she has an article scheduled to be published in Hispania entitled “Yo pertenezco aquí.” Academic Identities, Formal Spanish, and Feelings of Belonging: The Benefits of a Spanish Language Theater and Poetry Troupe for Latino Students at a University. Also forthcoming is a memoir entitled No Screaming Jelly Beans; Stories of Raising a Son with Autism. Her travels include most of the countries of Europe, Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Belize, Argentina, Uruguay and Canada.