Robert Bianchi

Assistant Professor

Contact

+974 4402 0625
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Specialization

English; Linguistics

Education

  • PhD Lancaster University, UK
  • MA York University, Canada
  • CELTA RSA/Cambridge, UK
  • Bilingual BA (Hons) York University, Canada

Biography

Dr. Robert Bianchi is an English language and linguistics specialist who teaches undergraduate courses in Linguistics, Writing, Rhetoric, Research, and Literature at VCUQatar. His primary research interests are bilingualism and code-switching, language and identity, biliteracy, and corpus-based discourse analysis. Robert’s educational background includes a BA, a Certificate to Teach English Language to Adults (CELTA), an MA, and a PhD in the fields of linguistics and language teaching.

Robert started teaching in the K-12 and Special Ed. Sectors in the early 1990’s. In the mid-90’s he taught English at private language schools in Toronto, Canada and then in Japan. He returned to Toronto and began teaching English rhetoric and composition to International Students at York University in 1999. Since then, Robert has taught at the post-secondary level in Oman, the UAE, and Qatar. Robert served for almost five years as a Faculty Developer (EFL) at the College of the North Atlantic-Qatar, occupying the position of Teaching & Learning Centre Coordinator before joining VCUQatar in January 2011. At VCUQatar, Robert has taught freshman and sophomore composition and rhetoric, Arab authors in translation, and writing in the workplace, and Intro. to Linguistics. He has also delivered the Instructional Skills Workshop (ISW) to fellow faculty members and served as an Appreciative Inquiry Facilitator. In addition to teaching, he currently supervises MFA in Design students. Robert also serves as an editor for the Voices in Asia (VIAJ) ELT journal. 

Robert continues to analyze data from the ground-breaking mahjoob.com multilingual corpus, a corpus of nearly half a million discussion forums written in English, Arabic, and 3arabizi/Arabish. Based on the vitality of 3arabizi as a written form of communication, Robert is also exploring the possible educational value of written Vernacular Arabic within K-12 schools in Qatar. He is also interested in translating religious texts from Classical Arabic and Farsi into English. Robert is also a creative writer and is completing his first novel, 7abibi, an online love affair set in the Middle East.

Research Interests

Robert continues to analyze data from the ground-breaking mahjoob.com multilingual corpus, a corpus of nearly half a million discussion forums written in English, Arabic, and 3arabizi/Arabish. Based on the vitality of 3arabizi as a written form of communication, Robert is also exploring the possible educational value of written Vernacular Arabic within K-12 schools in Qatar.

Publications

Publications

1 Bianchi, R. (2006). “Revolution or Fad? Latinized Arabic Vernacular.” Proceedings of the 11th TESOL Arabia Conference: Teaching, Learning, Leading, Vol. 10. Dubai: TESOL Arabia, 329-340.

2. Bianchi, R. (2012). “3arabizi - When Local Arabic Meets Global English on the Internet.” Acta Linguistica Asiatica, 2(1), 90-100. 

3. Bianchi, R. (2012). “Glocal Arabic online: The case of 3arabizi.” Studies in Second Language Teaching and Learning, 2(4), 483-503.

4. Bianchi, R. (2013). “Online Language Choice and Identity: The case of 3arabizi, Salafi English, and Arabic.” Proceedings of the 45th Annual BAAL Conference, 2013.

5. Bianchi, R. (2013). “Language and topic choice among prolific and non-prolific posters on an Arabic-English website.” International Journal of Social Science and Humanity, 4(2), 128-131.

6. Bianchi, R. (2013). “Language Use and Identity within the Virtual Community of Mahjoob.com.” Conference Proceedings: The Asian Conference on Society, Education and Technology 2013, Dec. 2013.

Recent Presentations

  1. “Language and topic choice among prolific and non-prolific posters on an Arabic-English website”, The International Economics and Research Development Centre Conference, Jeju Island, 2013.
  2. “Language Use and Identity within the Virtual Community of Mahjoob.com”, Asian Conference on Education 2013, Osaka, 2013.
  3. “Online Language Choice and Identity: The case of 3arabizi, Salafi English, and Arabic”, The 45th British Association for Applied Linguistics (BAAL) Conference, University of Southampton, Southampton, 2012
  4. “A tale of two scripts: Arabic in Arabic script vs. Arabic in Latin script online”, Languages in a Globalised World Conference, Leeds Metropolitan University, Leeds, 2012
  5. “Arabic, English, or 3arabizi? Online language choice among young Arabic-English Bilinguals”, EC Liberal Arts and Social Sciences Research Forum, CMU-Q, Doha, 2012
  6. “3arabizi/Arabish: Arab English Online”, Liberal Arts Conference, Mahidol University, Bangkok, 2012
  7. “3arabizi/Arabish: Towards a lexicon for a non-standard written mixed code”, Bilingual Workshops in Theoretical Linguistics, McMaster University, Hamilton, 2011
  8. “Arabic, English, or 3arabizi: Projecting Identity through Online Language Choice”, TESOL in Qatar Conference, Doha, 2011
  9. “Know Thy Students: Understanding Literacy Practices”, CNA-Q, Qatar TESOL, Doha, 2009
  10. “Web quests: A Powerful Tool to Teach K-12”, ICT Conference, CNA-Q, Doha 2008
  11. “Revolution or Fad? Arabic Chat in Latin Script”, TESOL Arabia Conference (Higher Colleges of Technology), Dubai, 2005.               
  12. “Opening up a can of worms: Debating in EFL”, TESOL Arabia Professional Development Workshops (United Arab Emirates University), Al-Ain, 2002.

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