Faculty Mentor

Dr. William Kretzschmar

Proposal Type

Oral Presentation

Start Date

2-11-2019 8:00 AM

End Date

2-11-2019 9:00 AM

Location

Nesbitt 3212

Abstract

Since the Displaced Persons Act of 1948, the United States has been at the forefront of aid for global refugee crises (BRYCS). While the number of refugees entering the country has dropped to its lowest numbers since 9/11 due to a lowered admissions ceiling and a reluctant government, there are still thousands of refugees inhabiting the United States . These refugees are expected to acclimate to life in a new country rapidly after being resettled. Part of this acclimation process insinuates, if not outright requires, that refugees learn English in order to truly adjust to America. To learn more about how this pressure can influence refugees acquiring English, I will spend three months researching and doing field work with refugees from around the world who had now settled in the greater Atlanta area.

The goals of my research is to see what mistakes are common in refugees acquiring English, what tools speakers use to overcome a lack of English knowledge, when and where code-switching is utilized, and to see how refugees respond to having to learn English. I believe my research is crucial to our understanding of the refugee community as a whole- while it can be hard for them to communicate in an effective way in English, understanding ways we can converse with them deepens our understanding of this population and in turn makes us more tolerant towards this vulnerable minority.

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Nov 2nd, 8:00 AM Nov 2nd, 9:00 AM

Communicative Methods and the Impact of Learning English in Refugee Communities

Nesbitt 3212

Since the Displaced Persons Act of 1948, the United States has been at the forefront of aid for global refugee crises (BRYCS). While the number of refugees entering the country has dropped to its lowest numbers since 9/11 due to a lowered admissions ceiling and a reluctant government, there are still thousands of refugees inhabiting the United States . These refugees are expected to acclimate to life in a new country rapidly after being resettled. Part of this acclimation process insinuates, if not outright requires, that refugees learn English in order to truly adjust to America. To learn more about how this pressure can influence refugees acquiring English, I will spend three months researching and doing field work with refugees from around the world who had now settled in the greater Atlanta area.

The goals of my research is to see what mistakes are common in refugees acquiring English, what tools speakers use to overcome a lack of English knowledge, when and where code-switching is utilized, and to see how refugees respond to having to learn English. I believe my research is crucial to our understanding of the refugee community as a whole- while it can be hard for them to communicate in an effective way in English, understanding ways we can converse with them deepens our understanding of this population and in turn makes us more tolerant towards this vulnerable minority.