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Business of Language Episode 5: Interview with Dr. Melissa Baralt

In episode 5 of the Business of Language Podcast, I interview Dr. Melissa Baralt, Associate Professor of Applied Linguistics of Florida International University in Miami.


Dr. Melissa Baralt, Associate Professor of Applied Linguistics at Florida International University


This episode is a little longer than previous episodes simply because I could not stop asking Dr. Baralt questions about her research, which focuses on two strands: second language acquisition and the cognitive benefits of bilingualism. She tells me about one of her current projects, which is an interdisciplinary study of the cognitive benefits of bilingualism, specifically on executive function in children who were born prematurely, which she is completing with Dr. Ashley Darcy Mahoney. (If you don’t know what executive function is, Dr. Baralt explains it in the podcast!) Her passion for research and teaching is obvious as she talks about her students, the topics that she researches, and the service that she’s giving to the community.

Dr. Baralt also talks about what led her to study Spanish linguistics and the results of her doctoral research concerning online language programs. She lists some excellent examples of careers that linguistic graduates can pursue, including academia, speech-language pathology, and data visualization, and also explains the process of grant writing and why it is so crucial in her field.

After listening to this podcast you’ll probably want to find out more about the field of applied linguistics, about executive function, about the benefits of bilingualism, or any other topic Dr. Baralt mentioned. You can start by following the links below:

Dr. Melissa Baralt’s faculty profile

FIU Article about Drs. Baralt and Mahoney’s research

Click here to listen to more episodes of the Business of Language Podcast.

Written by

Tammy Bjelland
Language lover, teacher & coach.

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