November 16, 2022
We wish to congratulate Dr. Guofang Li, Professor, Faculty of Education, on her seven-year reappointment as the Tier I Canada Research Chair in Transnational/Global Perspectives of Language and Literacy Education of Children and Youth.
The Canada Research Chairs Program enables Canadian universities to achieve the highest levels of research excellence and become world-class research centers. Chairholders improve our depth of knowledge and quality of life, strengthen Canada’s international competitiveness, and help train the next generation of highly skilled people through student supervision, teaching and the coordination of other researchers’ work.
Dr. Li was first appointed Tier 1 Canada Research Chair in Transnational/Global Perspectives on Language and Literacy Education of Children and Youth in 2017 with the aim of improving the success rates of immigrant and minority students by addressing the cultural, linguistic, instructional and structural barriers to their literacy and academic achievement.
The COVID-19 pandemic led to school closures, program cuts, and teacher attrition, worsening the educational inequities confronting marginalized children. Diminished access to technology, English learning opportunities, and resources significantly reduced learning in language and literacy.
As Canada Research Chair in Transnational/Global Perspectives of Language and Literacy Education of Children and Youth, Dr. Li seeks to improve the literacy outcomes of minoritized learners in the context of educational inequities that have been amplified by COVID-19.
I aim to improve the language and literacy learning outcomes of children from non-dominant backgrounds whose achievements have been impacted by pre-existing educational inequities and new challenges brought about by COVID-19.
— Dr. Guofang Li
In particular, she aims to determine the extent of minority children’s learning loss and the contributing factors, and implement pedagogical interventions to engage teachers and teacher-educators in transformative teaching toward equity.
Dr. Li plans to continue to study minority children’s biliteracy development, identifying factors that hinder their growth longitudinally and engaging in research on preparing and supporting equity-minded teachers for superdiversity in Vancouver and across Canada.
My research findings will increase educators’ understandings of the systemic inequities that jeopardize the learning success of children from non-dominant backgrounds in our schools. Preparing equity-minded teachers and mobilizing innovative, culture-centered pedagogical practices in schools will enable both mainstream and heritage language teachers to overcome these inequities with their students.
— Dr. Guofang Li
Collaborating with a national group of researchers, Dr. Li will implement equity-oriented pedagogies in literacy teacher education courses across Canada to better prepare teacher-candidates to teach in increasingly diverse contexts. Locally in Vancouver, her research will provide pedagogical interventions with a robust and culturally centered repertoire of teaching strategies for mainstream and heritage language teachers.
Please join us in congratulating Dr. Guofang Li on her renewal as Canada Research Chair and her continued research in language and literacy education of children and youth from non-dominant backgrounds.