Shelley Dykstra

A photo of a woman wearing white smiling at the camera

Position Title
PhD Candidate in Spanish

She, her, ella
615Sproul Hall


I am originally from the Bay Area, so I’m happy to be studying what I love, Spanish Linguistics, and serving students so close to home. My experience teaching Spanish and English to Speakers of Other Languages spans over ten years and a variety of ages and topics. My research interests are second language and heritage language reading and writing, pedagogy, and critical language awareness. In my free time, I dance Salsa and Bachata, make homemade ice cream and other sweets, teach indoor cycle, and play with my dog, Bruna.

Agustina Carando-Faculty Advisor

Selected Publications

  • Dykstra, S., Sánchez‐Gutiérrez, C., Marcos Miguel, N., & Alins Breda, D. (2022). Reading and affect: University Spanish learners' perceptions of a reading program. Foreign Language Annals, 1–23.
  • Ruiz-Alonso-Bartol, A., Querrien, D., Dykstra, S., Fernández-Mira, P., Sanchez-Gutierrez, C. (2021). Transitioning to Emergency Online Teaching: The Experience of Spanish Language Learners and Teachers in a US University. System.

Research Interests and Expertise

  • Second and Heritage Language Reading and Writing
  • Emotion and Language Learning
  • Critical Language Awareness
  • Pedagogy 
  • Second language acquisition
  • Teacher Feedback
  • Sociolinguistics
  • Spanish in the US
  • Heritage language learners 
Education and Degree(s)
  • B.A. in Linguistics Language Study, University of California, San Diego
  • M.A. in Spanish Linguistics, University of Barcelona
Honors and Awards
  • Provost’s Dissertation Year Fellowship in the Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences, 2022-2023
  • Dean’s Summer Graduate Fellowship, summer 2022 & 2023
  • Teaching Assistant Consultant Fellowship, Center for Educational Effectiveness, UC Davis, 2020-2022
  • Graduate Writing Fellow, University Writing Program, UC Davis, 2019-2020
  • Provost’s Fellowship in the Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences, UC Davis, 2018-2019
  • Applied Spanish Linguistics (UC Davis)
  • Spanish for Heritage Speakers (UC Davis)
  • Spanish III (UC Davis)
  • Spanish II (UC Davis)
  • Academic Reading and Writing (UC Berkeley College Writing Program)
  • Advanced Reading and Writing (Berkeley City College)
  • US University Admissions and Expectations (UC Berkeley College Writing Program)
  • Academic Vocabulary (UC Berkeley College Writing Program)
  • High Intermediate Listening and Speaking (Berkeley City College)
  • Grammar for Advanced ESOL Students (Diablo Valley College)
  • Integrated Reading and Writing: Advanced English Language Learners (Diablo Valley College
  • Advanced ESOL Reading and Study Skills (Diablo Valley College)
  • Advanced ESOL Writing (Diablo Valley College)
  • Conversation for Intermediate ESOL Students (Diablo Valley College)
  • Grammar for High Intermediate ESOL Students (Diablo Valley College)
  • Beginning Spanish I (Diablo Valley College)
  • Advanced Reading and Writing (Berkeley City College)
  • High Intermediate Listening and Speaking (Berkeley City College)
  • Beginning Spanish I (Holy Names University)
  • Beginning Spanish II (Holy Names University)
  • Intermediate Spanish I (Holy Names University)
  • Intermediate Spanish II (Holy Names University)
  • Advanced Spanish: Reading and Writing (Holy Names University)