Linguists and teachers collaborating in an ELA classroom: Teaching around the test




linguistics, English language arts, K-12 curriculum, secondary education


In this paper, a scholar of English Education (Michelle) and a linguist (Chris) discuss their four-week research study in a ninth-grade classroom. Highlighting the collaborations with the classroom teachers, this paper discusses the importance of integrating linguistic concepts with current curricular demands. A focus on the final activity, in which students were asked to explore how linguistic concepts relate to areas of the everyday world like social media and the law, demonstrates that students were able to engage with the linguistic concepts in critical and important ways. The paper finishes with a discussion of how linguists can consider future collaborations with stakeholders in K12 spaces, and the importance of integrating these concepts into the existing curriculum.  

Author Biographies

  • Michelle D. Devereaux, Kennesaw State University

    Dr. Michelle D. Devereaux has taught English Education for almost twenty years as both a secondary English teacher and a university professor. Her teaching and scholarship focus on language studies in the secondary English classroom, highlighting how linguistic and sociolinguistic concepts can be integrated into existing curricula. 

    She has written books on rhetorical grammar in the classroom and edited collections about teaching linguistic diversity in the secondary English Language Arts classroom. She is a Fulbright Scholar who taught in the Czech Republic in the 2018 – 2019 academic year. During her time abroad, she became interested in Global Englishes and has recently published on global English variation in the classroom.

    She is currently the Director of English Education at Kennesaw State University.

  • Chris C. Palmer, Kennesaw State University

    Chris C. Palmer is a Professor of English at Kennesaw State University. He teaches and publishes on present-day and historical English linguistics, including articles and books on word-formation, historical sociolinguistics, and pedagogy. Much of his work has examined changes in the use and productivity of nominal suffixes in English. More recently, he's been studying teaching at the high school and university levels of language variation and change in both U.S. and global Englishes. He's also interested in the language, literature, and culture of medieval England; the intersections of politics and language; and interdisciplinary connections between linguistics and writing studies.




How to Cite

Devereaux, Michelle, and Christopher Palmer. 2024. “Linguists and Teachers Collaborating in an ELA Classroom: Teaching Around the Test”. Proceedings of the Linguistic Society of America 9 (1): 5672.