• Contact Info

Van Nelson, Alina

Teaching Associate Professor


Research Areas research areas


research overview

  • My areas of interest in research are determined mainly by my position of coordinator. I am particularly interested in how to design curriculum according to the ACTFL performance standards elaborated, how to blend language instruction in order to develop students' critical thinking along with language acquisition. In addition to this, as we have been developing hybrid and online versions of our intermediate classes, I have mentored and assisted graduate students in creating curriculum, class activities that are relevant and engaging to students, as well as assessments. I fully integrated VoiceThread assignments and assessments in all 3 classes I coordinate (2110, 2120, 3010). In an effort to increase students' proficiency, I applied for a grant from ALTEC to support students enrolled in 2120 to have 3 15-minute conversations with a native speaker through Boomalang.


  • modern literature, modern novel, pedagogy, second-language acquisition


courses taught

  • FREN 2110 - Second-Year French Grammar Review and Reading 1
    Primary Instructor - Spring 2018 / Fall 2018 / Spring 2019 / Fall 2020 / Spring 2021 / Fall 2022 / Spring 2023 / Summer 2023 / Fall 2023 / Spring 2024
    A film based curriculum will expand the knowledge of francophone culture and will continue the development of communication skills begun in the first year. This third semester course will review essential beginning grammar before introducing intermediate structures, vocabulary, and cultural/literary readings.
  • FREN 2120 - Second-Year French Grammar Review and Reading 2
    Primary Instructor - Spring 2018 / Summer 2018 / Fall 2019 / Spring 2020 / Fall 2020 / Spring 2021 / Fall 2021 / Spring 2022
    Completes the film-based study of intermediate grammar begun in FREN 2110. Continued reading in French literature and culture, with considerable practice in writing and speaking French. Fulfills the Graduate School language requirement for the Ph.D.
  • FREN 3010 - French Phonetics and Pronunciation
    Primary Instructor - Spring 2018 / Fall 2018 / Spring 2019 / Fall 2021
    Improves students' ability to pronounce French correctly. Coursework involves the International Phonetic Alphabet, understanding the differences between pairs of sounds, and recognizing the relationship between spelling and pronunciation. Required of all FREN majors.
  • FREN 3050 - French Composition 1
    Primary Instructor - Fall 2022
    French third-year level composition course. Students practice and write different forms of formal French writing. They also hone their grammar skills and analytical reading of short literature pieces. This course or FREN 3060 is required for all French majors.
  • FREN 3100 - Introduction to Critical Reading and Writing in French Literature
    Primary Instructor - Spring 2021
    Study of French literature through close readings of representative examples of major literary forms (poetry, fiction, drama, essay) and through the composition of critical writings in French. Required for French majors.

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