Shannon Becker

Research Interests

My primary research area is second language acquisition (SLA). More specifically, I am interested in how second language learners develop listening comprehension proficiency, especially the cognitive processes by which this skill becomes automatic. I am also interested in the application of complexity (complex systems/dynamical systems) theory to the developing language system and how this perspective changes the methodological tools we use in SLA. I use both classroom- and laboratory-based experiments in my research in order to improve our theoretical understanding of how languages are learned and to offer practical suggestions for pedagogy.

Select Publications

In Progress

  • Becker, S. R. (proposal submitted) French for Reading and Translation. Textbook for graduate students.
  • Becker, S. R. On the feasibility of conceptualizing discrete L2 skills within the complexity paradigm.
  • Becker, S. R. Improving L1 English speakers’ perception of L2 French nasal vowels through high variability phonetic training.
  • Becker, S. R. Metacognition, automaticity, and listening in L2 French.
  • Becker, S. R. Going digital: textbooks tailored to the modern student.


  • Becker, S. R., & Sturm, J. L. Using metacognitive strategies to induce a phase shift: A complex systems approach to L2 listening instruction. In A.E. Tyler, L. Ortega, M. Uno, & H. I. Park, (Eds.). (2018). Usage-inspired L2 instruction: Researched pedagogy. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
  • Becker, S. R. (2017). Perception and production of unfamiliar L2 segments: Using technology for teaching and research. In M. O’Brien & J. Levis (Eds). Proceedings of the 8th Pronunciation in Second Language Learning and Teaching Conference, ISSN 2380-9566, Calgary, AL, August 2016 (pp. 21-29). Ames, IA: Iowa State University.
  • Becker, S. R., & Sturm, J. L. (2017). Effects of audiovisual media on listening comprehension: A preliminary study in French. CALICO, 34(2), 1-31.


  • Ph.D., Purdue University, French and Second Language Acquisition
  • M.A., Purdue University, French and Applied Linguistics
  • M.F.S., University of Wisconsin-Madison, Professional French and Media/Arts/Cultural Production
  • B.A., Western Michigan University, French


Shannon Becker
Assistant Professor
Watson Hall 115