Laura Gurzynski-Weiss

Laura Gurzynski-Weiss

Professor, Spanish and Portuguese

Education

  • Ph.D., with distinction, Georgetown University, 2010
  • M.S., Georgetown University, 2007
  • B.A., Marquette University, 2005

About Laura Gurzynski-Weiss

Research

I specialize in the field of instructed second language acquisition (ISLA), which studies how additional languages (L2s) are acquired in instructed contexts (classrooms, immersion programs, etc.), and what can be done to maximize learning outcomes. My research expands our understanding of variables that may affect L2 learning using distinct and complementary approaches, including but not limited to cognitive-interactionist approach and complex dynamic systems theory, usage-based and variationist lenses, and psycholinguistic methods.  

My ongoing research can be categorized in the following ways:

  • Examining the nature and role of interlocutor individual differences 
  • Measuring input, cognitive processing, and implementation of task-based training
  • Measuring learners’ attention and/or engagement in task-based and professional interactions
  • Expanding research on L2 Spanish learning and individual differences to under-explored instructional contexts, such as domestic immersion and elementary-level exposure-track L2 Spanish settings in the United States
  • Increasing access to and participation in applied linguistics and ISLA research

A cornerstone of my research is ensuring that the data I collect are impactful beyond academia. My work directly informs L2 learning opportunities in elementary, high school, and university contexts in our Bloomington and greater Indiana communities, and almost all occurs in collaborative engagement with students at undergraduate and graduate levels, within and beyond the classroom. I am committed to sharing my work via open access on IRIS-database.org, OASIS-database.org, and via the open-access educational resource site that I direct, the TBLT Language Learning Task Bank, tblt.indiana.edu.

Teaching

I teach two undergraduate courses regularly: Introduction to Hispanic Linguistics (HISP-S326), and the Acquisition of Spanish (HISP-S430). For the former course, I co-authored a textbook with faculty colleagues Díaz-Campos and Geeslin (Introducción y aplicaciones contextualizadas a la lingüística hispánica, Wiley Blackwell, 2017) and, with current and former students Daniel Jung (University of Indianapolis), Carly Carver (Augusta University), and Nofiya Denbaum-Restrepo (Minnesota State University), collaboratively designed a task-based companion set of materials for use with the textbook.

The graduate courses I teach include L2 teaching methodology (HISP-S517), the required training course for all our associate instructors, as well as seminars in second language acquisition including Task-Based Language Teaching and Learning (TBLT), Individual Differences (IDs), ISLA Research Methods, the Acquisition of L2 Spanish in Multiple Educational Contexts, and Second Language Acquisition for Spanish Teaching, an online course I co-designed with Josh Prada at IUPUI for Indiana high school Spanish teachers.

Service

My largest professional service involvements are as President of the International Association for Task-Based Language Teaching (iatblt.org), as Secretary General of the International Association of Applied Linguistics (aila.info), and as co-founder/co organizer of AILA Ibero-America (AIALA; with Kyria Finardi). I also serve as co-editor (with Nina Spada) Language Learning and Language Teaching book series (John Benjamins) and on the editorial boards of the journal TASK (John Benjamins) and the book series Research in Applied Linguistics (John Benjamins). Additionally, I founded and direct the TBLT Task Bank, an open-access repository for task-based materials (tblt.indiana.edu).

Specializations

  • Instructed second language acquisition
  • Interaction- and task-based classroom research and curricular design
  • Instructor characteristics and learner individual differences
  • Emerging bilingualism in elementary-aged children
  • Feedback use and perception
  • Teacher cognition
Books
Special issue
  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L. (Ed.) (2020). Cross-theoretical explorations of interlocutors and their individual differences. (270 pp.). John Benjamins.
  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L. (2020). In pursuit of the dynamic nature of learner individual differences. [Special issue]. Studies in Second Language Learning and Language Teaching, 10(1).
  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L., Long, A. Y., & Solon, M. (Eds.) (2017). TBLT and L2 pronunciation: Do the benefits of tasks extend beyond grammar and lexis? [Special issue]. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 39(2).
Peer-reviewed articles and chapters
  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L., Wray, M., & Coulter-Kern, M. (in preparation, due November). Needs analysis for exposure-track Spanish program in a rural setting. Invited in R. Gilabert & A. Malicka (Eds.), Task-based needs analysis. John Benjamins.

  • Zalbidea, J., Gurzynski-Weiss, L., & Baralt, M. (accepted). La enseñanza mediante tareas. In C. Sanz, E. Serafini, & I. Taboada (Eds.), Manual para la formación de profesores de español. Wiley-Blackwell.

  • Bernardo, J., Gurzynski-Weiss, L., Wray, M., & Coulter-Kern, M. (in press). Task-based elementary Spanish in rural Indiana: A practitioner-based study. In A. Thompson (Ed.), Studies in Second Language Learning and Teaching (special issue).

  • Jarrett, D., & Gurzynski-Weiss, L. (in press). Task-specific motivation and the development of Spanish L2 self during domestic immersion.
  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L., Bryfonski, L., & Reagan, D. (in press). Teacher individual differences and task adaptations: Making use of the TBLT Language Learning Task Bank. Invited and contracted in S. Li (Ed.), Individual differences in task-based language teaching. John Benjamins.

  • Carver, C. & Gurzynski-Weiss, L. (in press). Task-based domestic immersion: Insights from teacher implementation. Invited in C. Lambert (Ed.), Designing tasks for teaching foreign languages: Principles and practices. Cambridge University Press.

  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L., & Kim, Y. J. (2022b). Chapter 1: Getting started. To appear in L. Gurzynski-Weiss & Y. J. Kim (Eds.), Instructed second language acquisition research methods (pp. 3-30). John Benjamins.

  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L., & Kim, Y. J. (2022c). Chapter 6: Unique considerations for ISLA research across approaches. To appear in L. Gurzynski-Weiss & Y.J. Kim (Eds.), Instructed second language acquisition research methods (pp. 125-148). John Benjamins.

  • Kim, Y. J., & Gurzynski-Weiss, L. (2022). Chapter 15: Sharing your work: Contributing to the advancement of the field. To appear in L. Gurzynski-Weiss & Y. J. Kim (Eds.), Instructed second language acquisition research methods (pp. 355-378). John Benjamins.
  • Sachs, R., Baralt, M., & Gurzynski-Weiss, L. (in press). Psycholinguistics outside of the lab: Pedagogically oriented psycholinguistics research. In A. Godfroid & H. Hopp (Eds.), The Routledge handbook of applied psycholinguistics. Routledge.
  • Carver, C. & Gurzynski-Weiss, L. (in press). Task-based domestic immersion: Insights from teacher implementation. Invited in C. Lambert (Ed.), Designing tasks for teaching foreign languages: Principles and practices. Cambridge University Press.
  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L., Coulter-Kern, M., & Kuntz, T. (2021). Engagement and emerging elementary-level L2 Spanish: Detailing the status quo and identifying opportunities. Foreign Language Annals 54.
  • Baralt, Sachs, & Gurzynski-Weiss (2022). Applied psycholinguistics outside of the lab: Psycholinguistics in the language classroom. In A. Godfroid & H. Hopp (Eds.), The Routledge handbook of applied psycholinguistics. Routledge.
  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L. (2022). Learner individual differences and L2 speaking. In P. Hiver, M. Papi, & S. Li (Eds.), The Routledge handbook of second language acquisition and individual differences. Routledge.
  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L., Giacomino, L. & Jarrett, D. (2021). Examining high school learners’ experience of task motivation and difficulty in a two-week Spanish immersion camp. In M. Ahmadian & M. H. Long (Eds.), Cambridge handbook of task-based language teaching and learning (pp. 566-584). Cambridge University Press.
  • Carver, C., Jung, D., & Gurzynski-Weiss, L. (2021). Examining learner engagement in relationship to learning and communication mode. In P. Hiver,  A. H. Al-Hoorie, & S. Mercer (Eds.), Student engagement in the language classroom (pp. 120-142). Multilingual Matters.
  • Geeslin, K. L., & Gurzynski-Weiss, L. (2020). Tenure and promotion. In L. Plonsky (Ed.), Professional development in applied linguistics: A guide to success for graduate students and early career faculty (pp. 181-202). John Benjamins.
  • Jung, D., Gurzynski-Weiss, L., DiBartolomeo, M., Giacomino, L., Melero-García, F. (2020). Dynamic individual differences? An empirical example of a longitudinal design. Studies in Second Language Learning and Teaching 10(1), 177-219.
  • Philp, J., & Gurzynski-Weiss, L. (2020). On the role of the interlocutor in second language development: A cognitive-interactionist approach. In L. Gurzynski-Weiss (Ed.), Cross-theoretical explorations of interlocutors and their individual differences (pp. 20-50). John Benjamins.
  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L., Geeslin, K. L., Daidone, D., Linford, B., Long, A. Y., Michalski, I., & Solon, M. (2018). L2 classrooms as multifaceted sources of input: The synergy of variationist and usage-based approaches. In A. Tyler, L. Ortega, M. Uno, & H. I. Park (Eds.), Usage-inspired L2 instruction: Researched pedagogy (pp. 293-313). John Benjamins.
  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L. (2017c). Instructor individual characteristics and L2 interaction. In L. Gurzynski-Weiss (Ed.), Expanding individual difference research in the interaction approach: Investigating learners, instructors, and other interlocutors (pp. 151-172). John Benjamins.
  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L. (2017b). Introduction. In L. Gurzynski-Weiss (Ed.), Expanding individual difference research in the interaction approach: Investigating learners, instructors, and other interlocutors (pp. 3-18). John Benjamins.
  •  Gurzynski-Weiss, L., & Plonsky, L. (2017). Look who’s interacting: A scoping review of research involving non-teacher/non-peer interlocutors. In L. Gurzynski-Weiss (Ed.), Expanding individual difference research in the interaction approach: Investigating learners, instructors, and other interlocutors (pp. 305-324). John Benjamins.
  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L., Geeslin, K. L., Long, A. Y.; Daidone, D. (2017). Linguistic variation in instructor provision of oral input. In L. Gurzynski-Weiss (Ed.), Expanding individual difference research in the interaction approach: Investigating learners, instructors, and other interlocutors (pp. 225-254). John Benjamins.
  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L., Henderson, C., & Jung, D. (2017). Examining timing and type of learner-modified output in relation to perception in face-to-face and synchronous computer-mediated chat task-based interaction. In M. Ahmadian & P. García Mayo (Eds.), Multiple perspectives on task-based language teaching and learning (pp. 53-76).  de Gruyter.
  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L., Solon, M., & Long, A. Y. (2017). Introduction. In Gurzynski-Weiss, L., Long, A. Y., & Solon, M. (Eds.), TBLT and L2 pronunciation: Do the benefits of tasks extend beyond grammar and lexis? [Special issue]. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 39(2), 213-224.
  • Solon, M., Long, A. Y., & Gurzynski-Weiss, L. (2017). Task complexity, language-related episodes, and production of L2 Spanish vowels. In Gurzynski-Weiss, L., Long, A. Y., & Solon, M. (Eds.). TBLT and L2 pronunciation: Do the benefits of tasks extend beyond grammar and lexis? [Special issue]. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 39(2), 347-380.
  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L. (2017a). L2 instructor individual characteristics. In S. Loewen & M. Sato (Eds.), The Routledge handbook of instructed second language acquisition (pp. 451-467). Routledge.
  • Révész, A., & Gurzynski-Weiss, L. (2016). Teachers' perspectives on second language task difficulty: Insights from think-alouds and eye-tracking. Annual Review of Applied Linguistics, 36, 182-204.
  • Baralt, M., Gurzynski-Weiss, L., & Kim, Y. (2016). The effects of task type and classroom environment on learners’ engagement with the language. In M. Sato & S. Ballinger (Eds.), Peer interaction and L2 learning (pp. 209-239). John Benjamins.
  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L. (2016b). Spanish instructors’ operationalization and interpretation of task complexity and sequencing in non-experimental foreign language lessons. The Language Learning Journal 44(4), 467-486.
  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L. (2016a). Factors influencing Spanish instructors’ in-class feedback decisions. Modern Language Journal, 100(1), 255-275.
  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L., Al-Khalil, M., Baralt, M., & Leow, R. (2015). The roles of type of feedback and type of linguistic item on L2 awareness in computer-mediated communication. In R. Leow, L. Cerezo, & M. Baralt (Eds.), Technology and second/foreign language learning: A psycholinguistic approach (pp. 151-170). de Gruyter.
  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L., & Baralt, M. (2015). A closer look at learner responses to feedback and their effect on noticing in face-to-face and computer-mediated task-based interaction. Applied Psycholinguistics, 36(6), 1393-1420.
  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L., Long, A. Y., & Solon, M. (2015). Comparing interaction and use of space in traditional and innovative classroom spaces. Hispania, 98(1), 61-78.
  • Plonsky, L., & Gurzynski-Weiss, L. (2014). Research methods. In C. Fäcke (Ed.) Manual of language acquisition(pp. 31-49). de Gruyter.
  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L., & Baralt, M. (2014). Exploring learner perception and use of task-based interactional feedback in face-to-face and computer-mediated modes. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 36(1), 1-37.
  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L. (2014b). Triangulating graduate instructor learning in FL teaching methods: Questionnaires, concept maps, and reflective teaching journals. In Proceedings of the World Conference on Learning, Teaching and Educational Leadership, 141, 171-181.
  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L. (2014a). Graduate instructor in-class cognition and feedback provision over time. In R. T. Miller, K. I. Martin, C. M. Eddington, A. Henery, N. M. Miguel, A. Tseng, A. Tuninetti, & D. Walter (Eds.), Selected proceedings of the 2012 Second Language Research Forum, 227-239.
  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L. (2013). Instructor characteristics and classroom-based second language acquisition of Spanish. In K. L. Geeslin (Ed.), The handbook of Spanish second language acquisition (pp. 530-546). Wiley-Blackwell.
  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L., & Révész, A. (2012). Tasks, teacher feedback, and learner modified output in naturally occurring classroom interaction. Language Learning, 62(3), 851-879.
  • Baralt, M., & Gurzynski-Weiss, L. (2011). Comparing learners’ state anxiety during task-based interaction in computer-mediated and face-to-face communication. Language Teaching Research, 15(2), 201-229.

Grants, Honors, and Awards

  • 2024 Spring Graduate Research Assistant (Competitive Award); Department of Spanish & Portuguese
  • 2023 Faculty Academy in Excellence in Teaching (FACET) Inductee, Indiana University
  • 2023 Office for the Vice Provost of International Affairs International Conference Travel Award. $1500.
  • 2022 Office for the Vice Provost of International Affairs International Conference Travel Award. $1500.
  • 2021 Spring Graduate Research Assistant (Competitive Award); Department of Spanish & Portuguese
  • Vice Provost for Research Grant for “Emerging bilingualism in elementary-level exposure track Spanish: A collaboration with Monroe County.” $44,600; 2020-2022
  • Center for Rural Engagement Grant for “Emerging bilingualism in elementary-level exposure track Spanish: A collaboration with DuBois County.” $16,300; 2020-2022
  • Outstanding Mentor Award; Department of Spanish & Portuguese Graduate Student Advisory Committee; 2020
  • Graduate Research Assistantship; Department of Spanish & Portuguese; Spring 2021
  • Institute for Advanced Study Individual Research Award for “Task-based Spanish Immersion in the US: The intersection of L2 research and pedagogy.” $3000; 2020
  • Graduate Research Assistantship; Department of Spanish & Portuguese; Spring 2020
  • 2020 Center for Rural Engagement Award for “Emerging bilingualism in elementary-level FLEX Spanish.” $16,300
  • 2020 Office of the Vice Provost for Research Award for “Emerging bilingualism in elementary-level FLEX Spanish.” $44,600
  • 2020 International Association of Task-Based Language Teaching and Learning Award for “TBLT Language Learning Task Bank” https://tblt.indiana.edu/. $7600
  • 2020 Institute for Advanced Study Individual Research Award for “Task-based Spanish Immersion in the US: The intersection of L2 research and pedagogy.” $3000
  • 2020 Curriculum Development Award ($8000)
  • 2020 Outstanding Mentor Award; Department of Spanish & Portuguese Graduate Student Advisory Committee, 2020
  • Graduate Research Assistantship; Department of Spanish & Portuguese; Spring 2019
  • 2018 Distinguished Research Award (with Andrea Révész, University College London); Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL)
  • International Conference Travel Grant; Office of the Vice Provost of International Affairs; $800; 2017
  • Graduate Research Assistantship; Department of Spanish & Portuguese; Fall 2016
  • Trustees Teaching Award; Spring 2016
  • Office of the Vice Provost of International Affairs Short-Term International Visitors Grant for “Symposium on Interlocutor Individual Differences in Cognition and Second Language Acquisition”; $1500; 2015
  • College Arts and Humanities Institute Conference Grant for “Symposium on Interlocutor Individual Differences in Cognition and Second Language Acquisition”; $7576; 2014
  • Outstanding Mentor Award; Department of Spanish & Portuguese Graduate Student Advisory Committee; 2014
  • Graduate Research Assistantship; Department of Spanish & Portuguese; Fall 2014
  • International Conference Travel Grant; Office of the Vice Provost of International Affairs; $1500; 2014
  • Grant-in-Aid, Office for the Vice Provost of Research; $3000; 2014
  • Institute for European Studies International Travel Grant; $800; 2013
  • Short-Term Faculty Exchange with the Universidad de Sevilla, Office for the Vice Provost of International Affairs; 2013; 2014
  • Center for Arts & Humanities Institute Grant for Hispanic Linguistics Guest Lecture; $1000; 2012
  • Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Research Grant from the Office of the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education; $5000; 2011-2012

Selected current research projects

  • Founder and Project Director, The Task-Based Language Teaching and Learning Task Bank, https://tblt.indiana.edu
  • Reconceptualizing exposure-track Spanish in the United States
  • Co-Founder/Co-Organizer, Ibero-American Association of Applied Linguistics (AIALA),  https://aila.info/about/regionalization/aila-ibero-america/
  • Project Investigator & Director of Curricular Design for the IUB Spanish language summer immersion camp (SLIC), a task-based program with built-in research measures triangulating Spanish learning, perceptions of task complexity and task difficulty, motivation, engagement, and other learner individual differences
  • Making use of the TBLT Language Learning Task Bank (collaboration with Prof. Lara Bryfonski and Derek Reagan, Georgetown University)

2023-2024: On research sabbatical. Engagements include:

  • Reconceptualizing elementary-level exposure-track Spanish in the US. Indiana University PK12 Education Summit in Indianapolis; August 2023
  • University of Urbana-Champaign Fall Lecture Series; September 2023
  • 42,000 tasks and counting: Reconceptualizing exposure-track L2 Spanish in the United States. Departments of Linguistics and Spanish & Portuguese; Georgetown University; October 2023
  • Research methods in instructed second language acquisition online webinar. Penn State Workshops in Research Methods for Applied Linguistics; September 2023
  • The TBLT Task Bank: Putting the “Task” in Task-Based Language Teaching. American Council of Teachers of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) in Chicago; November 2023 (with Georgetown PhD student and Task Bank Project Assistant Caitlyn Pineault)
  • Teacher IDs in ISLA: Insights from theory, research, and practice. Konin University (Poland; online talk); November 2023