2017 Keynote Speaker


Dr. Erica Neeganawedgin

Erica Neeganagwedgin(Taino) is an Assistant Professor in Critical policy, Equity and Leadership Studies at Western University’s Faculty of Education. She graduated from the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto where she earned a Master of Arts degree with a specialization in Indigenous Education and a PhD in Sociology and Equity Studies in Education. Her areas of teaching and research interests include Indigenous knowledge systems and Intellectual Traditions; Indigenous epistemologies; Indigenous history and educational policies; history of Indigenous Education in North American contexts, identity and comparative historical race/cultural relations in the North American context. Erica has taught and engaged in curriculum design and program development at a number of higher education institutions in Canada.


Dr. Julie Byrd Clark

Dr. Julie Byrd ClarkDr. Julie Byrd Clark is Professor of Applied Linguistics, French Language Pedagogy, and Intercultural Education at the Faculty of Education at Western University, Canada. Her interdisciplinary work is recognized both nationally and internationally for its contributions to understanding social processes involved in language learning, teaching and education. particularly as concerns social identity construction, multilingualism and social justice. Dr. Byrd Clark has published in many different venues, but some of her seminal works include the publication of two books: Multilingualism, citizenship, and identity: Voices of youth and symbolic investments in an urban, globalized, world (2009, Continuum/Bloomsbury); and Reflexivity in language and intercultural education: Rethinking multilingualism and interculturality (with Dervin, 2014, Routledge) and a recent guest-edited special issue, Transdisciplinary Approaches to language learning and teaching in transnational times (L2 Journal, vol. 8 issue 4).

Dr. Deanna Friesen

Dr. Deanna FriesenI am an Assistant professor in the Applied Psychology research group at the Faculty of Education. I study bilingualism and its impact on language and cognitive processing. Specifically, I am investigating how bilingualism as a life experience modifies language use and how the cognitive system responds to the need to manage two languages. This work includes investigations of bilingual word recognition, sentence processing and speech perception. My current projects are examining how individual differences in language proficiency and executive control ability are related to how bilinguals activate knowledge from both of their languages when reading sentences and words. I have been using behavioural, eye-tracking, and neural (i.e., EEG) measures to address these questions. Additionally, I am investigating how to support reading comprehension in bilingual readers. To this end, I am investigating what reading strategies are employed by pre-service teachers of second language learners in their own reading and how this may translate to their practice. I am also examining the relationship between language proficiency, executive control ability and reading strategy use in bilingual students. The goal is to determine characteristics that differentiate successful bilingual readers from less successful readers to support reading development in bilingual students who are struggling.

Dr. Veronica Pacini-Ketchabaw

Dr. Veronica Pacini-KetchabawVeronica Pacini-Ketchabaw a Professor of Early Childhood Education in the Faculty of Education at Western University in Ontario, Canada. Her current research, within the Common World Childhoods Research Collective, traces the common world relations of children with places, materials, and other species. She has published on a diversity of topics relating to early childhood, including Encounters with Materials in Early Childhood Education (Routledge, 2017), Unsettling the Colonial Places and Spaces of Early Childhood Education (Routledge, 2015), Journeys: Reconceptualizing Early Childhood Practices (University of Toronto Press, 2014), and Flows, Rhythms, and Intensities of Early Childhood Education Curriculum(Peter Lang, 2010). Veronica is currently working, with my colleague Affrica Taylor, on a book entitled Children and Animals: Common World Ethics for Entangled Lives (Routledge). She is a co-editor of the open access Journal of Childhood Studies and the Bloomsbury book series Feminist Thought in Childhood Research.