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Kimberly Klassen


person name Position: Postgraduate Researcher Email:
Area: Centre for Language and Communication Research

PhD Research

The objective of this research is to identify the learning burden that proper nouns in reading texts place on the L2 reader.  It is often assumed that proper nouns are understood in context by L2 readers; however, this may not be the case. Readers may need to be familiar with the culture of text for adequate comprehension, and this culture is partially expressed through proper nouns. Proper nouns will be looked at to investigate the effect of cultural familiarity on reading comprehension.

Supervisor: Tess Fitzpatrick

Academic Background

MA Applied Linguistics and TESOL, Leicester University, UK
BA English, University of Winnipeg, Canada
IATEFL, member since 2003
JALT, member since 2011

Conferences, Symposia and Seminars

  • Effects of proper nouns on L2 reading comprehension, Cardiff University Lexical Studies conference, Wales, UK (2013)
  • Combining research and teaching: Using formative evaluations, Kansai Gaidai Forum, Japan (2012)
  • ‘Finding your computer’s voice’ (special needs computer software), TESOL Arabia, Dubai, UAE (2008)
  • ‘Fostering independent learning in special needs students,’ TESOL Arabia IL SIG, Al-Ain, UAE (2008)
  • ‘Translating documents into Braille,’ for the Faculty of Education at UAEU, Al-Ain, UAE (2007)


2011 – Present Kansai Gaidai University, Japan
Teaching first year academic reading and writing in regular and intensive (for study abroad) programs.
2004 – 2011         UAE University, United Arab Emirates
Taught in the foundation program; also worked with visually impaired special needs students.