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Maria Torres-Guzman

Professional Background

Educational Background

B.A., Universidad de Puerto Rico, major field of study in Spanish language and literature with minors in History and French;
M.A., University of Michigan, major field of study in Spanish language and literature with further study in Humanities;
M.A., Ph.D., Stanford University, major field of study in Bilingual/Bicultural Education, Dissertation (1983): Participatory Democracy and Bilingual Education: The Case of San Jose, California. 

Scholarly Interests

My interests lie in the space where culture and language meet in classroom interactions as well as in broader society.  I am interested in understanding how teachers deal with the issues of language and culture within strong bilingual education models; how parents support their children both linguistically and culturally, and how the linguocultural spaces are created in curricular social organization and in the development of materials.  

Selected Publications

current projects

The current project I am working on as PI is the Pedagogy of Social Imagination in Languag4e Learning/Teaching (PSILLT) which is based on different Vygotskyan theoretical frameworks: Critical Sociocultural Theory and Cultural-Historical Activity Theory - in order to create a pedagogy that is expansive, uses thinking and imagination as tools, and builds on the strengths of diverse communities. PSILLT aims to structure a university/school network that will support the Bilingual/Bicultural Education teacher candidates (BBE TC) to become quality teachers. New York State requires that teacher candidates have experiences in schools prior to student teaching and, traditionally, these are constructed as observations in public school classrooms. This project goes beyond, by putting BBE TCs in teaching situations that are less restricted than classrooms. The TC BBE candidates will engage in Language Awareness (LA) experiences with monolingual teachers in the Partner Schools (PS). They will also teach in an Afterschool (AS) with 1st and 2nd grade bilingual students in the PS. We place BBE TCs in situations where they are likely to acquire practical understanding of planning, enactment, and evaluation of rigorous and enhanced learning, and to acquire the knowledge about and skills to adapt enhanced learning tools and lessons in differentiated context - more or less restrictive ones. This project aims to meet the linguistic proficiency needs of the BBE TCs so that they are more confident in the language they will be teaching in. We expect them to improve their oral and written pedagogical and academic language other than English. Since mainstream teachers are likely to have the bilingual emergent students who are not in bilingual programs, PSILLT aims to engage them in a LA experience in which they will learn sufficient language to open up conversations with new students and their parents. We expect the teachers to feel more confident in having conversation starters with non-English speakers and to improve their dispositions towards bilingually emergent learners as they will be reflecting on their own process of second language learning. In both the LA and AS experiences we hope to introduce new cultural tools through technology and the arts to explore expansive learning events and create new models of language learning/teaching. We anticipate greater understanding on how to educate emergent bilingual students by all involved - the Interdisciplinary Faculty Group (IFG) that will meet twice a month during the duration of the project, the participating BBE TCs, the PS Monolingual teachers involved in the LA experience and the Dual Language (DL) teachers who will be teacher coaches for the BBE TCs involved in the AS. The bilingual student is usually seen as a recipient of language teaching. In this project, we see the 150 1st and 2nd graders serviced by the PSILLT, as co-negotiators of the meanings acquired of the cultural and technological tools and models of learning and teaching that emerge from such experience. We anticipate that the AS experience, which will be organized as project base instruction, will give students greater engagement with the language of instruction, improve their language skills, and enhance and deepen their understanding of the creative and socially imaginative potential of language. The last objective, which will be emerging from the other activities, will be for the Dual Language teacher coaches to learn how to mentor teachers in their coaching roles with BBE TC and to explore how to adapt the new learning models created within PSILLT in the AS and LA experiences, for the more restrictive environment of the everyday classroom. We will document this process to understand the elements that might need to be considered for scaling up the models at a school-wide level and beyond. At the University level we aim to have interdisciplinary conversations and to engage with the data collected so as to strengthen our work with TCs and with PSs. Ultimately, we are focused on quality learning and teaching for universities and schools.

curriculum vitae


Torres-Guzmn, M.E. & Swinney, R (2009).  Freedom at Work:  Language, Professional, and Intellectual Development. Boulder, CO:  Paradigm Press.

Torres-Guzman, M. E. & Gomez, J. (Eds.) (2009). Global Perspectives on Multilingualism:  Unity in Linguistic Diversity. NY:  Teachers College Press. 

Barnard, R. & Torres-Guzman, M. E. (Eds.) (2008).  Creating Communities of Learning in K-12 schools: International case studies and perspectives. Clevedon, England: Multilingual Matters

Skutnabb-Kangas, T., Garcia, O. & Torres-Guzman, M. (2006). Imagining Multilingual Schools: Langauge in Education and Glocalization.  Philadelphia:  Multilingual Matters.

Prez, B. and Torres-Guzmn, M. E. (Third edition, 2001, Second edition, 1995, First edition 1991). Learning in Two Worlds: An Integrated Spanish/English Biliteracy Approach.  New York: Longman.

Editor journal volumes:

Brisk, M., Torres-Guzmn, M. E. & Minaya-Rowe, L.  (Eds.)  (2002). Special Issue on Successful Bilingual Programs.  BRJ26:1.

Torres-Guzmn, M. E. & Carter, R. (2001).  Special Issue on Multicultural Education (Volume II).  Teachers College Record, 102(6): 949-952. 

Torres-Guzmn, M. E. & Carter, R. (2000).  Special Issue on Multicultural Education (Volume I).  Teachers College Record, 102(5): 861-863. 

Refereed Journals and Chapters:

Torres-Guzman, M. E. (under consideration) Is a Read Aloud just a Read Aloud? The Reading Teacher.

Prez, B. & Torres-Guzmn, M.E. (under consideration).  Access to language and literacy in two-way bilingual classrooms.

Torres-Guzman, M. E., Lao, C. and Han, A. (in press) Hidden Jewels:  San Francisco Chinese Immersion Programs.  Asian and Pacific Islander American Education.

Torres-Guzman, M. E  (2008). Teachers assuming ownership of teaching:  The case of a dual language education program in the United States.  In (German text)

Torres-Guzman, M. E. (2009). Negotiating appropriateness in the second language within a dual language education classroom setting.  In Barnard, R. & Torres-Guzman, M. E. (Eds.) Creating Communities of Learning in K-12 schools: International case studies and perspectives. Clevedon, England: Multilingual Matters

Torres-Guzmn, M.  E. & Howes E. (2008). Experimenting in teams and tongues:  Team teaching a bilingual science education course. In Richardson Bruna, K & Gomez, K. (Eds.) Talking Science, Writing Science: The Work of Language in Multicultural Classrooms.  Mahwah, N.J: Lawrence Erlbaum Publishers

Torres-Guzman, M. E., Hunt, V. Torres, I., Madrigal, R., Flecha, I. & Jaar, A. (2006)  Teacher study groups:  In search of teaching freedom within a collective.  The New Teacher, 2:207-226.

Torres-Guzman, M. E., Morales, S., Han, A., & Klien, T.  (2005).  Self-designated dual-language orograms:  Is there a gap between labeling and implementation?  Bilingual Research Journal. 29, (2):453-474.

Torres-Guzman, M. E.(2005).  La lecture suivie n'est-elle qui lecture suivie (Are Read Alouds Just Read Alouds?)   Lettre de l'AIRDF (International Research Association in French Didactics), No. 25. 98-108.

Torres-Guzman, M. E. & Etxeberria, F. (2005)  Modelo B/dual language programs in the Basque Country and the US. International Journal in Bilingualism and Bilingual Education, 8 (6), 506-528.

Hollins, E. & Torres-Guzman, M.E. (2005). Research on preparing teachers for diverse populations. Cochran-Smith, M. & K. Zeichner (Eds.). Studying Teacher Education : The Report of the AERA Panel on Research and Teacher Education. Mahwah, N.J.: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

Torres-Guzmn, M. E. (2003).  Preparing teachers to recognize and confront symbolic violence in bilingual education. In Wallace, B. C. & Carter, R. T (Eds.). Understanding and Dealing with Violence:  A Multicultural Approach (Pp. 201-225).  Thousand Oaks, CA:  SAGE Publications.

Torres-Guzmn, M. E. (2002). Dual language programs. Directions in Education and Language Series, Washington, D. C.: NCBE.

Torres-Guzman, M. E.,  Abbate. J., Brisk, M. & Minaya-Rowe, L. (2002).  Defining and documenting success for bilingual learners:  A collective case study.  Bilingual Research Journal:26, 1.

Torres-Guzmn, M. & Y. Martinez. (2000). Puerto Rican/Latino student voices:  Stand & Deliver. In Nieto, S. Puerto Rican Voices.  Mahwah, N.J:  Lawrence Erlbaum.

Torres-Guzmn, M. E. (1997, 2004).  Language, culture and literacy in Puerto Rican Communities.  In Perez, B. (Ed.). Literacy in Diverse Communities.  Mahwah, N.J: Lawrence Erlbaum.

Torres-Guzmn, M. E. (1997). Mentoring Bilingual Teachers.  Directions in Education and Language Series, Washington, D. C.: NCBE.

Torres-Guzmn, M. E. et al. (1996). Stories about Differences in a Collaborative with Middle School Students.  Theory in Practice. 35: 196-204.

La Colectiva Intercambio. (1996). Ways of Looking, Teaching and Learning: A Tapestry of Latino Collaborative Projects. C. Walsh (Ed.). Educational Reform and Linguistic Minorities: Rethinking Policy, Pedagogy, and Community (pp. 95-122). Mahwah, N.J:Laurence Erlbaum

Torres-Guzmn, M. E. and Goodwin, A. L. (1995) Mentoring Bilingual Teachers. Focus. Washington, D. C.: NCBE.

Torres-Guzmn, M. E. and Goodwin, A. L. (1995).  Urban Bilingual Teachers and Mentoring for the Future.  Education and Urban Society. 28(1): 48-66.

Torres-Guzmn, M. E. (1995). Recasting frames:  Latino parent involvement.  In Baker, C. & Garca, O. (Eds.). Policy and Practice in Bilingual Education: Extending the Foundations (Reprint). Philadelphia: Multilingual Matters Ltd.

Torres-Guzmn, M. E. (1994). Language minorities:  Moving from the periphery to the center? Educational Forum. 58: 409-420.

Torres-Guzmn, M. E. (1994).  Surviving the Journey.  In (Eds.) R. Padilla & Chvez, R. The Leaning Ivory Tower: Latino Professors in American Universities. Albany, NY: SUNY Press.

Torres-Guzmn, M.; Mercado, C., Quintero, A. H. & Rivera Viera, D. (1993). Teaching and Learning in Puerto Rican/Latino   Collaboratives: Implications for Teacher Education. E. Hollins (Ed.). The Challenge of Cultural Diversity in Teacher Preparation and Assessment. Albany, NY:SUNY Press.

Torres-Guzmn, M. E. (1991). Stories of Hope in the Midst of Despair:  Culturally Responsive Education for Latino Students in an Alternative High School in New York City. In Saravia Shore, M. & Alvizu, S. Cross cultural literacy: Ethnographies of communication in multiethnic classrooms. New York:  Garland.

Torres-Guzmn, M.E. (1991) Voy a Leer Escribiendo in DeVillar, R.A. & C.J. Faltis (Eds.) Computers and cultural diversity:  Restructuring for school success. Albany, NY:  SUNY Press.

Torres-Guzmn, M.E. (1990). Voy a Leer Escribiendo in the context of bilingual/bicultural education.  Computers in the Schools. 7:145-171.

Torres-Guzmn, M. E. (1990). Recasting frames:  Latino parent involvement.  In Faltis, C. & M. McGroarty (Eds.).  In the interest of language:  Contexts for learning and using languages (pp. 386-405).  Berlin: Walter de Gruyter & Co.

Torres, M. E. (l989). Attitudes of bilingual education parents toward language learning and curriculum and instruction. NABE Journal. 12:171-185.

Torres, M. E. (l986). Special language issues.  In Duffy, G. and L. Roehler (Eds.).  Improving classroom reading instruction.  New York:  Random House.

Book Reviews & Forwards:

Torres-Guzman, M. E. (in press).  Review of Color of Bureaucracy:  The Politics of Equity in Multicultural School Communities.

Torres-Guzman, M. E. (2004).  Forward.  In Perez, B. Becoming Biliterate:  A Study of Two-Way Bilingual Immersion Education.  Mahwah, NJ:  Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

Torres-Guzman, M. E. (2003) Review of La Clase Magica:  Imagining Optimal Possibilities in a Bilingual Community of Learners.  AEQ, 24, 3.

Torres-Guzmn, M. (1999). Review of Ethnic Diversity in Communities and Schools:  Recognizing and Building on Strengths.  AEQ, 31, 3.

Torres-Guzmn, M. E. (1998) Review of Where Something Catches by Victoria Muoz.  International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education

Torres-Guzmn, M. E. (1995).  Review of Bilingual Education:  Politics, Practice, Research, Ninety-second Yearbook of the Society for the Study of Education:  Part II. By Arias, M.B.  & Casanova, U. (Eds.). Teachers College Press. 96: 590-592