Department of English Department of English College of Arts and Sciences
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Faculty Honored with University Alumni Association Awards

Dr. Emily Thrush, Professor of Applied Linguistics, and Tammy Jones, Instructor, were recently honored by the Alumni Association for their contributions to the University of Memphis. At the 2012 Faculty Convocation, Thrush Tammy Jones and Emily Thrushwas presented with the award for Distinguished Research in the Humanities while Jones was presented with the Distinguished Teaching award.

Thrush was recognized for her scholarship in the areas of professional communication and the teaching of English as a Second Language and Applied Linguistics. She notes, "Research in English covers a multitude of ways in which the language is used for teaching, workplace communication, literature, and other facets of life. My research has brought together perspectives on technical and professional communication with the ways people around the world use English to communicate with each other."

During her career, she has authored or co-authored influential textbooks on second language acquisition and has 26 refereed publications. To support her research, she has received more than $2 million in research funding. Her 1993 essay, “Bridging the Gap: Technical Communications in the International and Multicultural World,” has been called “a pioneering article – a revelation for the field in making the case for multilingual and multicultural sensitivity and adaptation in technical communication.” Her research interests include international and intercultural issues in professional communication, writing for digital media, and issues in second language reading and writing. She has conducted workshops on teaching ESL as an Academic Specialist for the U.S. State Department in Lebanon, Germany, Italy, Mexico, the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Brazil, trained teachers in China for the Foreign Experts Bureau, and spent a year in Mexico as a Senior Fulbright Scholar

Jones teaches a variety of undergraduate courses in the Department of English and works with students from several different programs. She teaches both developmental as well as Honors sections, participates in the Fresh Connections Learning Communities, and serves as a mentor for new teaching assistants in the First-Year Writing Program. Students describe Ms. Jones as an enthusiastic, dedicated teacher. According to one student, “Ms. Jones is by far one of the best teachers that I’ve encountered while at the University of Memphis. She makes the effort to involve her students in class discussions and is an all-around great teacher.” Similarly, Ms. Jones’ faculty colleagues in English describe her as one of their “go to” teachers in the department,” who is able to teach “almost any class on our rotation at any time to any student.”

Jones is the co-author of “Unlocking the Visual Puzzle: Understanding Textbook Design,” which appeared as part of the Teaching of English as a Second Language Classroom Practice Series. Jones is interested in intercultural communication as a result of nearly a decade of teaching in Belize, Central America. Her research now focuses on how discourse patterns are culturally constructed and how rhetorical elements influence learners in World English contexts.


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Last Updated: 7/27/12