Ellen Lange

2005 Award for Excellence in Teaching

Ellen Lange has been a mainstay of the English as a Second Language Program virtually since its inception. She has been a tremendous success as a classroom teacher, dealing with non-native speakers on both the undergraduate and graduate levels. Over and over again, students praise her patience, her organization, and her helpfulness. She has improved the language skills of students from many different cultural backgrounds, with sensitivity to their cultural and individual styles. She relates to her students well, meeting their need for effective and strong classroom leadership and pushing them into becoming independent writers and presenters.

Ms. Lange holds a B.A. in French and History, a M.A. in English (TESOL emphasis), and a M.A. in French. She has over 24 years of service at the University of California, Davis and is currently a Continuing Lecturer in Linguistics. Although English is her heritage language, she is fluent in Spanish and French and understands the challenges of becoming academically proficient in a foreign language.

Ms. Lange’s contributions to English language teaching have not been limited to traditional classroom instruction. She has consistently been a fearless and early adopter and adapter of technology in the classroom. She was one of the first in the department to incorporate computer-aided instruction into teaching ESL. She has made extensive and effective use of the computer classrooms on campus and was among the first to use PowerPoint presentations for grammar instruction. She volunteered for the piloting of my.ucdavis.edu so that students could access course materials and drop off assignments 24 hours a day, another example of her care for, and interest in, her students.

In part motivated by the somewhat deficient teaching materials available for high-level instruction in ESL composition, Ms. Lange has co-authored a text: Writing Clearly: An Editing Guide, now in its second edition. The adoption of this text by many schools has increased the profile of the ESL program outside the university. Ms. Lange has been invited to give in-service training sessions for secondary school and university teachers, thus helping to build articulation between secondary teachers and UC Davis.

Ms. Lange’s teaching techniques and materials are firmly grounded in second-language acquisition theory. Not only does she see knowing the research as germane to designing materials that promote saliency (seeing the error) and automaticity (automatically using the form correctly) but also has done extensive research, her latest paper (with Angela Foin) being Comparison of the Initial Draft with the Final Draft of an Out-of-Class Paper to Determine the Effectiveness of Treatment of Selected Errors in Generation 1.5 Writing.

Ms. Lange also has a distinguished record of service to the University, serving as an Academic Federation representative to the Undergraduate Council this year and as chair of the AF Communications Committee last year. She has also been the AF representative to numerous Academic Senate Committees, including the Committee on Preparatory Education, the Grade Change Committee, and the Committee on Courses of Instruction as well as serving on the Editorial Advisory Board for Dateline.