Professor Cho receives Vilas Associates Award

Congratulations to English and Language Sciences professor Jacee Cho, who was awarded a prestigious Vilas Associates award for 2023-2024!

The Vilas Associates award supports faculty research at UW-Madison in a wide variety of disciplines. Awardees are chosen from a pool of applicants based on a detailed research proposal. The grant provides funding that faculty can use for research costs such as travel, materials, student help, and other support. Information about previous winners can be found here.

Professor Cho’s project title is “Multilingual Acquisition: Kazakh–Russian bilingual speakers’ L3 English Acquisition.”

Here is a summary of the project proposal:

Until recently, L3 acquisition was studied primarily as an extension of second language (L2) acquisition. However, recent research on bi/multilingualism has shown that there are differences in the language acquisition process and also in language use between those who speak one language and those who speak two or more languages (Cabrelli et al., 2012; Rothman et al., 2019). Building on my past and current research program investigating the crosslinguistic influence (also known as language transfer) of the native language (L1) in L2 acquisition, the proposed project examines crosslinguistic influences on the L3 acquisition of English by Kazakh–Russian bilingual speakers. I will also compare Kazakh-Russian bilingual speakers learning English as their L3 to Russian speakers learning English as their L2. There are ethnic Russians in Kazakhstan who do not speak Kazakh but learn English as their L2. In so doing, I can directly address questions about differences and similarities between L2 and L3 acquisition. I plan to travel to Kazakhstan in fall 2023 to collect data.