Heather Phipps joins us from the Department of Educational Studies at McGill University, where she is nearing the completion of her Ph.D. She holds a Masters of Arts in Second Language Education from McGill University, a TESL certificate from Lethbridge College, and a B.A./B.Ed. from the University of Lethbridge. While a doctoral student at McGill, Ms. Phipps has been the recipient of numerous graduate scholarships, including the prestigious Doctoral Fellowship award and the Provost doctoral fellowship.
Phipp’s dissertation, Children Speaking to Children: Multimodal Engagements with Contemporary Canadian Picture Books in French Classrooms, is an ethnographic study situated in a public primary school in urban Montreal. It documents young children’s responses to Canadian children’s literature in Grades 1 & 2 French classrooms. Her study highlights the ways in which children engage and respond to both the words and images in diverse Canadian literature, and how they reflect on their own lived experiences in relation to the picture books. Her future research interests include inquiry related to issues of belonging, identity, and community for children and teachers in the context of minority language education in francophone and French immersion schools in the Saskatchewan context and in diverse multilingual contexts across Canada.
Phipps is a published scholar who has presented her work at numerous national and international conferences, serves as a reviewer for several scholarly journals and for the Language and Literacy SIG of CSSE. She has extensive experience as a classroom teacher in a French immersion context, and has also taught education classes at the post-secondary level. She is past president of the McGill University Education Graduate Students’ Society.