Hyesun Cho

Hyesun Cho

Assistant Professor
Primary office:
438 Joseph R. Pearson Hall


Hyesun Cho, assistant professor, joined the KU faculty in the fall of 2011.

Her previous experience was in the Hawaii State Department of Education as a curriculum developer and instructor. Cho earned the BA degree from Korea University in Seoul, Korea, the MA degree in English as a Second Language from the University of Hawaii at Manoa and the PhD in Second Language Acquisition from the University of Hawaii at Manoa.


Her primary research interests are teaching English as a second or foreign language, second language (L2) education, heritage language education, social identity, narrative inquiry, critical literacy, action research, critical pedagogy, electronic portfolios and technology-integrated language instruction.

Upon arriving at KU, she developed a new seminar in language and identity for graduate students. Cho has published research in several book chapters and Teaching and Teacher Education. She has presented her research at numerous international conferences including American Educational Research Association (AERA), Association of American Applied Linguistics (AAAL), Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) and American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL). She received the 2008 Outstanding Dissertation of the Year Award from the Second Language Research SIG at AERA.


Cho, H. (Ed.). (2013). “It’s very complicated” Exploring heritage language identity with heritage language teachers in a teacher preparation program. Language and Education, 28(2), 181-195.

Academic Degrees

  • Ph.D., Second Language Acquisition, University of Hawaii at Manoa, Honolulu, Hawaii, 2008
  • M.A., English as a Second Language, University of Hawaii at Manoa, Honolulu, Hawaii, 2001
  • B.A., English Language Education, Korea University, Seoul, Korea, 1995


TESOL, second language/literacy education, academic and social identities of language learners and teachers, critical literacy, participatory action research, critical multiculturalism and technology-integrated instruction


Dept Number Course Name
C&T 820 Teaching English as a Second Language/Bilingual Education
C&T 823 Developing Intercultural Awareness in L2 Classrooms
C&T 828 Language and Identity


  • Michael B. Salwen Scholars Award, Korean American Educational Researchers' Association, 2014
  • KU School of Education Summer Writing Grant, 2013
  • KU New Faculty Research Grant, 2012

Selected publications

  • Cho, H. (2013). ‘It's very complicated’ exploring heritage language identity with heritage language teachers in a teacher preparation program. Language and Education. DOI:10.1080/09500782.2013.804835
An update on C&T faculty-conducted research: Last May, Dr. Barbara Bradley was awarded a $135,000 grant from the National Endowment for Financial Education to study young children's development of financial and college-bound identities. The project is collaborative with researchers from the School of Social Welfare, the Departments of Sociology and Linguistics, & the School of Education. Her study is part of a larger project providing savings accounts and financial education to kindergartners in the LPS and following the children and their family members for several years to look at outcomes related to financial and college-bound identity formation in 2 experimental groups and one control group.
“The whole issue of diversity has changed," said Novak: http://t.co/1BXI3dPuhG http://t.co/hP9gYJV6cy

Why KU
  • Associate professor Diane Nielsen involved in $120 million project to overhaul how reading is taught to children by 2015
  • School of Education is 10th among public universities for its master’s and doctoral programs
    —U.S. News & World Report
  • 3.35: average GPA of students admitted to teacher education program
  • All teacher education programs accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education
  • All teacher education programs accredited by the Kansas State Department of Education
  • Alumni have been named Kansas Teacher of the Year
  • Alumni have received the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching and the Horizon Award