Mandy Faretta-Stutenberg and Katharina Barbe recognized at the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages convention

Katharina Barbe and Mandi Faretta-Stutenberg

Two NIU faculty members were recognized for their achievements during the annual American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) convention in New Orleans.

Mandy Faretta-Stutenberg, assistant professor of Spanish linguistics, received the Early Career Scholar Award. The award, first given in 2017, recognizes the work of emerging scholars by reviewing their research, contributions to the field, and promise for future impact in the field of foreign language learning or foreign language teaching research.

Faretta-Stutenberg was nominated by Luke Plonsky, associate professor of English at Northern Arizona University; managing editor of the journal Foreign Language Annals; and editorial board member for Studies in Second Language Acquisition, Language Teaching, and Learning and Individual Differences. Applications were scored based on the relevance of the candidate’s vita to teaching foreign languages, the individual’s research contributions to the field, the quality of a sample publication, clear direction of future research that will make important contributions to foreign language teaching, and webinar proposal of interest to ACTFL members.

Kristin Davin, chair of the ACTFL Research Special Interest Group, stated in the award announcement that Faretta-Stutenberg’s “publications, impact on the field, and plan for future research were resoundingly clear in [the] application materials.”

Faretta-Stutenberg will give a one-hour webinar during the spring semester entitled Experimentation in Education that will be available to ACTFL’s more than 12,500 members.

Katharina Barbe, chair of the Department of World Languages and Cultures, was honored with the American Association of Teachers of German (AATG) Outstanding German Educator Award at the post-secondary level. The award is presented to only one deserving educator nationally.

In addition to serving as department chair, Barbe has served as a trainer at the Goethe Institute for nearly 20 years, attending many of the workshops and seminars and then replicating them at the local and state level. She incorporates contemporary topics and develops methods and materials teachers can use in their classroom instruction.

Barbe has presented at local, state and national conferences, and has worked to assure that the methods and practices of second-language acquisition are made accessible to second-language educators at all levels. She has been active organizing immersion days for high school students and teachers.

Barbe has collaborated with other educators to develop educational materials. She and five colleagues co-authored “Deutsch Prüfungstraining: AP German Language and Culture,” which was published by Cornelsen in 2013. More recently, she has co-authored “Teaching Units for the German Classroom: Integrating German and Environmental Sciences,” which will be published later this year.

Barbe received the Northern Illinois AATG Outstanding Educator Award in 2016 and most recently was honored for her service by the Illinois Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages.

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