Memorial page for my teacher, mentor, and friend, Tere Pica:


From a young age, I was fascinated by languages. Coming from a predominantly exam-focused educational context where many learners lose their joy of learning language, I developed an interest in language assessment, which can maintain and support learners’ joy of language learning while measuring learners’ language use ability accurately.


My primary research interest is in teaching and testing oral language with a special focus on interaction among interlocutors. My dissertation study investigated whether paired learner assessment is a valid measure of L2 proficiency for developmentally equal and unequal learner pairings.  The results showed that while linguistic accuracy was consistent across the pairings, and test-takers maintained task-completion goals, their uses of interaction strategies such as confirmation checks, clarification requests, and comprehension checks increased as their interlocutors' proficiency increased.  These findings convinced teachers that test-takers can be free from their interlocutor influence in terms of their proficiency.  However, they also call for more research studies on the issues of scoring of interaction strategies and the connections between instruction and assessment.  This study was funded by graduate student research grant from the Korean Studies Program at the University of Pennsylvania and the Small Grants for Doctoral Research in Second or Foreign Language Assessment from the Educational Testing Service.  I presented the pilot data at the Language Testing Research Consortium in 2009 and received the Robert Lado Memorial Award. 


I have worked closely with Dr. Teresa Pica and Dr. Yuko Butler on form-focused instruction study and assessment projects. I have helped Dr. Pica to develop and investigate the effectiveness of different approaches of focus on form on learners’ acquisition of a particular grammatical form. I was also deeply involved in self-assessment and teachers' understanding of classroom assessment research with Dr. Butler.


As a certified secondary school English teacher in Korea, I have tutored and taught EFL and ESL learners. I also taught Korean as a foreign and heritage language at the University of Pennsylvania for three years (undergraduate) as well as the TESOL Internship, Seminar, & Thesis, Language Assessment, Language for Specific Purposes to the masters students in Penn's TESOL program, Content-Based Instruction, and Second Language Acquisition (graduate).  I have taught teaching Language for Business Communications: Materials Development, teaching practicum, approaches to teaching modern languages, and materials development in Summer 2011 and Fall 2011.  In Spring 2012, I have taught Second Language Acquisition and approaches to teaching modern languages.  I was a faculty member at the Language & Literacy Education, University of Georgia from fall 2012 until summer 2015 and taught language assessment, ESOL teaching methods, and interlanguage pragmatics courses. I recently joined the University of Maryland, Baltimore County where I'm teaching language assessment and second language acquisition. 


In addition to research and teaching, I have conducted workshops on content-based learning for secondary school teachers , assessment for higher education foreign language instructors and elementary school teachers, and secondary ESOL teachers.  I have been serving as a contact editor, reading editor, production and develop team member, and technology coordinator of the Working Papers in Educational Linguistics at the Graduate School of Education at the University of Pennsylvania from 2003 until 2011.


Having presented at various academic conferences in the United States, in Korea, and in the United Kingdom, I've published in the journal TESOL Quarterly (solo author), Language Testing (with Butler), Modern Language Journal (with Butler),  English Today (with Jeon), Working Papers in Educational Linguistics, and Electronic Magazine for Multicultural Education.

Dr. Jiyoon Lee is an Assistant Professor of M.A. TESOL program at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County.

Area of specialty
TESOL, Language assessment, SLA, Teacher training
Research and Teaching Interests
Language assessment, Second Language Acquisition, Task-based Language teaching & learning, Social impact of language testing, and research methodology
Other Interests
New & classical music, technology, and history