Aurora Tsai

PostDoctoral Fellow

Member Of:
  • School of Modern Languages

My research interests revolve around ways we can simultaneously support and assess second language reading-to-learn skills. Reading-to-learn entails learning new material through critically engaging with text content, for example, by evaluating, classifying, and comparing information from the text with what they already know, and applying what they learn to new situations. In particular, I am interested in the role of prior knowledge in supporting Japanese learners' higher order thinking as they engage with texts on critical issues in Japanese culture.

I am also interested in ways we can use data visualizations and technology to uncover trends in applied linguistics research.  I use Python and R for natural language processing, topic modeling, and statistical analyses of linguistic data.  One digital humanities project I am collaborating on involves visualizing the experiences of mixed race individuals in relation to their racial identity, physical appearance, environment, gender, and knowledge of their heritage languages.  


  • Ph.D., Carnegie Mellon University
  • M.A., University of Hawaii at Manoa
Research Fields:
  • Applied, Cognitive and Socio-Cultural Linguistics
  • Instructional Technologies for Foreign Language Acquisition
  • Japanese
  • Pedagogy and Curriculum Development
  • JAPN-1001: Elementary Japanese I
  • JAPN-1002: Elementary Japanese II
  • JAPN-3691: Tech & Scientific Japn
  • JAPN-3693: Japan Today
All Publications

Journal Articles