Nilma Dominique coordinates the Portuguese Language Program at MIT.
Nilma Dominique coordinates the Portuguese Language Program at MIT. She designed the program in 2010 and developed the curriculum for beginners', intermediate and advanced courses, as well as a course addressing the specific needs of Spanish speakers.
Dr. Dominique holds a Ph.D. in Applied Linguistics from the Universidad de Alcalá, Madrid, Spain (2007). She has extensive experience teaching Portuguese as a first and a second language. She has also trained new teachers and worked as a language consultant. Prior to MIT, she taught Portuguese at Harvard University in the Department of Romance Languages and Literatures for 6 years. In all of them, she was awarded the Certificate of Distinction in Teaching from the Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning. At MIT, she received the SHASS Levitan Awards for Excellence in Teaching in 2012, awarded by the School of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences.
Her book, La Comunicación sin Palabras. Estudio Comparativo de Gestos Usados en España y Brasil (Communication without Words. A Comparative Study of Gestures Used in Spain and Brazil), published in Spanish in 2012 (Alcalá University Press – UAH), is the result of a research on the most common gestural emblems used in the Spanish and Brazilian cultures. In addition to providing an overview of previous studies on Non-Verbal Communication, the author analyses the role played by kinesic signs in human communication in general and its place in the foreign language classroom. This study contains quantitative and qualitative data obtained through fieldwork, as well as a comprehensive comparison of the different uses of the gestures used in each of the aforementioned cultures.
Dominique´s research interests focus on language pedagogy, mostly on the teaching and learning of Portuguese and Spanish as second languages. She is also interested in intercultural communication, language and culture, language and identity, and sociolinguistics.