Denise L. Hatcher, EdD

Denise HatcherProfessor of Spanish/Chair of Foreign Languages

Office Location: Institute for Collaboration 119
Phone Number: 630-844-7827
Email Address:

Teaching Philosophy
As a second language educator, I work to create a student-centered learning environment in which students are active participants in the learning process and develop the four language skills of reading, writing, speaking and listening. I believe effective second language learning combines language, grammar and cultural components. Learning a second language is a valuable resource that expands one’s horizons and opportunities only limited by one’s imagination. I encourage my students to imagine a world without limits and to find ways to use their second language skills to positively impact the lives of others.

EdD, Adult and Higher Education with specializations in Spanish Phonetics and Second language acquisition – Northern Illinois University
MA, Spanish Language and Literature – Northern Illinois University
BA, Spanish and Secondary Education – Northern Illinois University

Areas of Specialization
Second Language Pedagogy
Comparative Grammar
Thematic Instruction
Community Involvement
Second Language Learning Outside of the Classroom

Courses Taught
SPN1220 Elementary Spanish II
SPN2200 Intermediate Spanish
SPN2300 Intermediate
SPN2400 Advanced Spanish Skills
SPN3200 Spanish Phonetics and Conversation
SPN3300 Spanish Translation
SPN3450 Spanish Language Films
SPN3600 Latin American Civilization and Culture
SPN3650 Language and Community Immersion
SPN3700 Survey of Latin American Literature
SPN3880 Comparative Grammar Structures
SPN3880 Spanish Travel/Language Immersion
SPN4990 Spanish Capstone Seminar
SPN5880 Spanish for Social Workers

Highlights of Publications, Honors and Professional Contributions
La identidad y la Inmigración en la película A Better Life. Congreso Internacional de Literatura Hispánica, Cartagena de Indias, Colombia, March 14, 2014. I’ll Take a Little Spanish with that, Please. Aurora University Faculty Research Symposium, February 2014.
Nayeli:Su identidad y la inmigración, Congreso Internacional de Literatura Hispánica, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, March 15, 2013.
Creating a Community: Embracing Diversity in the Classroom. Aurora University Faculty Research Symposium, February 2013.
Tacking Linguistic Diversity: A Comparative Study of the English and Spanish Languages, Northern Illinois University Summer Literacy Conference, June 20 and 21, 2012.
It’s All in the Cards, Aurora University Faculty Research Symposium, February 2012.
Why do they speak and write like that: A comparative study of the English and Spanish languages? Aurora University Faculty Research Symposium, February 2011. The Power of Visual Images: Incorporating Photograph into the Foreign Language Classroom, American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese, Albuquerque, New Mexico, July 2009.
Community and Language Immersion: Working Towards Empowering a Silent Minority, American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese, San José, Costa Rica, July 2008.
Attended the 30th Annual Statewide Conference for Teachers Serving Linguistically and Culturally Diverse Students in Oak Brook, IL, December. 2006.
Taking Classroom Knowledge to Others: A Service-Learning Project Promoting Literacy and Character Traits to Native Spanish Speakers, American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese, New York City, July 2005.
Does the Character of Each Student Count? ~ An Effort to Provide an Equitable Education for Non-Native English Speaking Students Illinois Association of Teacher Educators, Naperville, IL November 2004.
South of the Border ~ A Shared Heritage: A Research Endeavor that Allowed College Students to Move Beyond the Boundaries of a Formal Educational Environment and to Participate in a Museum and Problem-Based Learning Opportunity Centered Around Cultural Diversity, American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese, Acapulco, Mexico, July 31, 2004.
Learning Her Way In: The Life History of a Latina Adult Educator Midwest Research to Practice Conference, Columbus, Ohio, October 2003.
The Life History of a Latina Learning to Serve as an Adult Educator Because of Her Role as a Parish Nurse African American and Latino(a) Adult Education Symposium, Chicago, IL April 2003.
Attended the Office of English Language Acquisition Summit in Washington D.C., November 2002.
Walking Alongside Her as She Retraces Her Steps: A Literature Review and a Practical Example of the Qualitative Research Method of Life History, a Relevant and Legitimate Form of Research in Adult Education The Adult Education Research Symposium, Chicago, IL April 2002.
Reflective Writing in the Classroom The International Society for Educational Biography, Chicago, IL April 2000.

Los Verbos: A Vital Link to Understanding the Spanish Language, in progress
Tackling Linguistic Diversity: A Handbook of Comparative and Contrastive Grammar of the English and Spanish Languages, in progress
Rimas y Dibujos para Aprender y Recordar el Español, in review
Los Tres Modos Teachers’ Discovery, January 2012.
Conversa Conmigo: A Conversational Approach to Learning Spanish Teachers’ Discovery, Spring 2010.
Community and Language Immersion: Actively Using Spanish in Our Community, Thresholds In Education, Fall 2008.
Equity for English Language Learning Students and Issues in Teaching Character Traits, A Research Report, CITE (Critical Issues in Teacher Education), Spring 2004.
Co-author, A Challenge for School Leaders: Gender Equity Issues Remain, AASA (American Association of School Administrators), Fall 2006, co-authored

Highlights of Campus Involvement
International Task Force Committee, recording secretary
Academic Standards Committee, chair
Admissions Review Committee
Faculty Personnel Committee
Faculty Senate Representative for the College of Arts and Sciences
General Education Committee
Athletic Committee
Marcus and Mark H. Trumbo Excellence in Teaching Award Committee
Spartan Award Committee
Diversity Affairs Committee
University Life Board
Sigma Delta Pi, advisor
Spanish Club, advisor
Sigma Lamba Epsilon, past advisor
Latin American Student Organization, past advisor
Circle K, past advisor
Cheer and Dance Team, coach