A native speaker of Russian, Svetlana Abramova received her Ph.D. in Russian Language and Methodology from the Moscow State Pedagogical University. She is an experienced teacher, who has taught Russian to both native and non-native Russian students in Russia and the USA. For more than ten years she has worked with high school students specializing in physics and mathematics, while setting high requirements on students’ competence in wide range of social registers of Russian, including the academic style. Her teaching practice, as well as her research interests, is specifically oriented to learner-centered pedagogical techniques, such as student research-based projects in Russian language, which were the main subject of her Ph.D. dissertation and a monograph. In 2011, she was a student of the STARTALK Teacher Program at the University of Washington and applied her teaching experience in the STARTALK Student Program lessons related to STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math). In 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015, she was the Lead Instructor for the STARTALK Student Program, where she successfully taught STEM lessons and facilitated a Linguistics Project. As an Affiliate Instructor in the UW Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures, Svetlana is involved in teaching Russian to UW students as well as world languages curriculum development and teacher training in public and community schools.
Dr. Irina Dubinina holds a PhD in Russian (with specialization in Second Language Acquisition) from Bryn Mawr College. She has been the director of the Russian language program at Brandeis University since 2007. Dr. Dubinina has 17 years of experience teaching Russian as a foreign language and an extensive background in teaching heritage speakers of Russian. Dr. Dubinina is the Chair of the Foreign Language Oversight Committee at Brandeis University and a consultant for the National Security Language Initiative for Youth. She has developed and led a number of teacher training seminars in Russia for teachers of Russian as a foreign language. She is a regular contributor and reviewer for the Online Resource Center for Teachers of Russian, has authored and co-authored several articles on heritage learners, and has collaborated with the authors of Live From Russia: Stage One (ACTR/Kendall) on publishing the 2nd edition. She is currently working on a textbook for adult heritage speakers of Russian. Dr. Dubinina has been awarded the Doris Sill Carland Award for Excellence in Teaching from Bryn Mawr College (2007) and the Louis Dembitz Brandeis Prize for Excellence in Teaching (2012).