Indiana University

The Department of Second Language Studies

Debra Friedman

Photo of Debra Friedman

Assistant Professor of Second Language Studies
(812) 855-2680
Ballantine Hall 731

Research Interests

  • Second and multilingual language socialization
  • Second language pedagogy
  • Language teacher education
  • Social, political, and ideological aspects of second language education
  • Qualitative research methods


  • Ph.D. 2006, Applied Linguistics and TESL. University of California, Los Angeles
  • M.A. 1998. Teaching English as a Second Language. University of California, Los Angeles
  • B.A. Slavic Languages and Literatures, University of California, Berkeley

Personal Statement

In my work I take a qualitative approach to the study of language learning and teaching in classroom settings. My primary theoretical framework is language socialization, which views learning as grounded in newcomers’ participation in community practices under the guidance of more experienced members. I have utilized this framework to study the role of language education in Ukrainian language revitalization and nation building and academic literacy socialization in a US MA-TESOL program.

In addition to my empirical research, I also have an interest in qualitative research methods in applied linguistics have co-authored a book (with Charlene Polio of Michigan State University) on research methods in second language writing research and am currently working on a volume on conducting qualitative and mixed methods research in second language classrooms.



  • Friedman, D. (in progress) Researching second language classrooms: Qualitative and mixed methods approaches.Under contract with Routledge.
  • Polio, C., & Friedman, D. (2017). Understanding, evaluating, and conducting second language writing research. New York: Routledge.

Journal Articles

  • Friedman, D. (under review). Academic literacy socialization in English as a foreign language (EFL) contexts: A research agenda. Invited paper under review at Language Teaching.
  • Friedman, D. (2021). Defending borders and crossing boundaries: Ideologies of polylanguaging in interviews with Ukrainian youth. International Journal of Multilingualism. .
  • Friedman, D. (2020). Reflecting on the research interview as a socializing interaction. TESOL Quarterly, 54(1), 266-275.
  • Friedman, D. (2019). Citation as a social practice in a TESOL graduate program: A language socialization approach. Journal of Second Language Writing, 44, 23-36.
  • Friedman, D. (2016). Our language: (Re)imagining communities in Ukrainian language classrooms. Journal of Language, Identity, and Education, 15, pp. 165-179.
  • Friedman, D. (2010). Becoming national: Classroom language socialization and political identities in the age of globalization. Annual Review of Applied Linguistics, 30, 193-210.
  • Friedman, D. (2010). Speaking correctly: Error correction as a language socialization practice in a Ukrainian classroom. Applied Linguistics, 31, 346-347.
  • Kagan, O. & Friedman, D. (2003). Using the OPI to place heritage speakers of Russian. Foreign Language Annals, 36, 536-545.

Book Chapters

  • Friedman, D. (in progress). Qualitative/interpretive approaches to data in L2 research. To appear in A. Mackey & S. Gass (Eds.), Current approaches to second language acquisition research. Wiley Blackwell.
  • Friedman, D. (2020). Negotiating epistemic authority in a US graduate program in TESOL. In M. J. Burdelski & K. M. Howard (Eds.), Language socialization in classrooms: Culture, interaction, and language development.  (pp. 158-177). Cambridge University Press.
  • Friedman, D. (2012). Socialization and language revitalization. In A. Duranti, E. Ochs, & B. Schieffelin (Eds.), Handbook of language socialization (pp. 631-647). Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell.
  • Friedman, D. (2012). How to collect and analyze qualitative data. In A. Mackey & S. Gass (Eds.). Research methodologies in second language acquisition (pp. 180-200). Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell.
  • • Friedman, D. & Kagan, O. (2008). Academic writing proficiency of Russian heritage speakers: A comparative study. In D. Brinton, O. Kagan, & S. Bauckus (Eds.), Heritage language acquisition: A new field emerging (pp. 181-198). New York: Routledge.

Courses Taught

  • SLST-S301: Introduction to Second Language Acquisition
  • SLST-T435: TESOL Practicum
  • SLST-T500: Teaching English for Academic Purposes
  • SLST-T505: Introduction to Teaching English for Academic Purposes
  • SLST-T522: Survey of Applied Linguistics
  • SLST-T534: Methods of Teaching ESL/EFL to Adults
  • SLST-T535: TESOL Practicum
  • SLST-T538: L2 Reading and Writing
  • SLST-S600: Qualitative Research in Second Language Studies
  • SLST-S640: Discourse Analysis

The learning of second and foreign languages is a rich and fascinating process involving linguistic, psychological, and cultural and social dimensions. The Department of Second Language Studies is dedicated to scholarship on the structure, acquisition, and use of nonnative language (in both instructed and contact contexts). We currently offer (1) two MA programs and a PhD program designed to train the next generation of foreign and second language professionals as both researchers and teachers; (2) an undergraduate minor designed to provide a firm foundation in second language acquisition; and (3) an English Language Instructional Program designed to assist matriculated undergraduate and graduate students and an Intensive English Program designed to prepare international students for study at English-speaking universities.