A Chat with Dr. Michele Regalla

Lejla Bilal

We know her as Dr. Regalla. She’s as enthusiastic grammarian, and a guiding light to language theories. She herself favors BICS (basic interpersonal communicative skills) and CALP (cognitive academic language proficiency) because Jim Cummins is a personal hero of hers! “Really, academic language is key to a good SIOP lesson.”

Her earliest experience in the TESOL field was during her MA enrollment at the University of Southern Mississippi, where she realized how interesting the subject could be. Her first TESOL involvement occurred while working with Japanese students who came to the school district she was teaching French. “With absolutely no English skills, these students were expected to be mainstreamed.” She saw the needs of ELs firsthand.

“Watching graduate students teach is a highlight of working with MA TESOL students- we have the best students because they are articulate, motivated, and really care about ELLs.”

After receiving her doctorate from the University of Pittsburgh, she sought out a professorship. ODU’s position for Assistant Professor wasn’t posted on the Chronicle of Higher Education where higher education jobs are usually posted. Lucky for us, Google provided her with the opportunity to search and seize an opportunity here at Ohio Dominican.

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