A linguistics professor at Kansas University whose Language and the Mind introductory course has increased its enrollment tenfold during the past 10 years has been honored with the 2011 Budig Teaching Professorship in Social and Behavioral Sciences.
Joan Sereno has taught in the linguistics department since 1999. She will hold the title of Budig Teaching Professor for one year and will receive a $5,000 research supplement.
The Language and the Mind course seeks to apply linguistic theories to things students interact with in everyday life. For example, she points out that “Rock Chalk, Jayhawk” is a phrase that does not rhyme for many speakers, but does for most Kansans.
The teaching professorship was established by a gift from former KU Chancellor Gene Budig and his wife, Gretchen. It is given annually to a faculty member who has demonstrated a commitment to excellence in teaching.