My name is Natalia Balyasnikova, I am a PhD Candidate at the TESL program in the Department of Language and Literacy Education at the University of British Columbia. I was born in Saint Petersburg, Russia and moved to Canada in 2013.
As an English language teacher, I am concerned that perspectives from formal adult ESL education only might overlook subtle aspects of cultural and linguistic development of individual adult immigrants who engage in learning of a new language. That is why my research is focused on pedagogies of community-based and non-formal literacy programs for adult learners.
I strongly believe in community outreach and public scholarship, and I volunteer with UBC Learning Exchange where I facilitate ESL classes and give workshops on intercultural communication. Away from research and work, I enjoy time with my friends, watching TED talks, and dancing.