Dialogue went one On one with Christine Tsang in April.
Christine is a member of the Canadian Language and Literacy Research
Network. She is a student researcher and a graduate student at McMaster
University in Hamilton, Ontario. Christine is currently working
on two Network research projects Acoustic Properties of Childrens
Voices and Their Impact on Communication and A Longitudinal
Study of the Relation Between Pre-Linguistic Temporal Processing
and Language Ability. In addition she is working on her thesis
Infants Perception of Timbre: Spectral Slope and
Nasal Resonance. Christine, along with three other students,
is helping to organize a Student Network within the Canadian Language
and Literacy Research Network.
on getting involved
I got into my current field of practice as a sideline after
some chance meetings (networking can really take you places). I
became mildly aware of the Network when it was applying to become
a Network of Centre of Excellence because at that time I was collaborating
with Dr. Kathleen Bloom on my thesis. Through my collaboration with
Dr. Bloom and through the people Ive met because of The Network
- things have taken off. Thats how I got involved.
on starting a student network
Members of the Highly Qualified Personnel Committee selected
four network students to set up the Student Network. Our small group
will serve as the Student Network Core for the first year of operation.
The core group consists of:
- Nicole Conrad, a 5th year PhD student at McMaster
- Tracy Dow, a 1st year student in Master's of Speech-Language
Pathology at the University of Alberta.
- Martha Anne Roberts, a 2nd year PhD student at
the University of Waterloo.
- Christine Tsang, a 5th year PhD student as McMaster
More students need to become involved with The Network so beginning
a Student Network is a good way to meet this need. Training initiatives
and student involvement are a big part of what The Network is about
so getting an actual student network going will give students a
more prominent place within our Network and assist in the training
of Highly Qualified Personnel for future development.
on the Student Network mission
Our Mission Statement for the Student Network is - the future
of language and literacy research is in the hands of today's graduate
students. The student network shares the philosophy of the larger
network - promoting language and literacy research. As
students, we must take an active role in advancing research in these
The student network has been established to ensure
the involvement of students within the network and to provide opportunities
- opportunities for students to learn, opportunities for students
to grow as researchers in language and literacy and opportunities
for the future.
on what students want from The Network
Ive talked with some students involved in The Network
and what they would like is more information about what is currently
going on in the field. As students we recognize that networking
is going to be a major part of our future and our career and being
a part of The Canadian Language and Literacy Research Network is
going to be an advantage to all students who are involved. There
is currently nothing like The Network in Canada for students. Its
a good opportunity for students to get involved in some great research
that is going to have an effect on community and society.
The Student Network has sent an introduction letter to get the word
out about joining the Student Network. We have a few events scheduled
for the Annual General Meeting. We are having a student meeting
(Friday May 3, 8:30pm in the Dalhousie Room) where we are going
to talk about goals, who we are, our mission statement and hopefully
have some Network researchers speak about how students can find
networking opportunities. The Student Network is also participating
in the poster session at the conference. Stop in and meet us.
on the L & L student pulse
As a student who is getting ready to graduate and thinking
about career and options for the future, it is a bit frustrating
because as students we only know a little piece of the bigger pie
in the language and literacy field. I think the Network is going
to provide us with the links in terms of knowing additional career
options and pointing us in the right direction. The pulse now for
students is to know everything we can but we cant know everything.
The Network will provide us with opportunities to try a little bit
of everything and see where we best fit in.
Ive found my participation has been very rewarding.
I started with a minor collaboration with Dr. Kathleen Bloom and
from there my participation has blossomed. So far Ive been
on a trip to Edmonton to meet other researchers within our research
theme group. Great experience. Its great to be a part of The
Network and see what others are doing in their labs out west.
on student network ideas
Brainstorming ideas for the Student Network future includes:
Internal Student Web site within www.cllrnet.ca. Our main goal
is to get the Web site up and running. It will be a site for students
to visit and find out what is happening in the Network, what opportunities
are out there and network with other students throughout Canada.
As of this week we have a discussion room site set
up on The Network Web site. We encourage all students to post a
message about what they want their Network to be about. All suggestions
are welcome. The website is: http://www.cllrnet.ca/en/student
Student exchanges/internship/visits. We would like to set up some
formal procedure that allows students to visit other labs within
The Network. This would allow an opportunity to do research - small
research projects, setting up experimental design, or collaborating
on larger projects.
Travel grants. This goes with the idea of student exchanges. Establishing
some sort of application process to apply for travel money for these
student exchanges or conference attendance to profile Canadian Language
and Literacy Research Network research projects.
on researcher feedback
Students want more feedback from Network members and partners
and we hope to get this at our poster presentation session at the
Annual General Meeting. We want answers to questions like what qualities
are researchers looking for in researchers of tomorrow. What kind
of researchers will they need in five to ten years? The students
are the future and we want to be as good as we can.
on my interests
I initially got into the language side of things by accident
when I met Kathleen Bloom. Dr. Bloom came to give a talk here at
McMaster and at that time I was much more interested in music. Currently
my primary research interest is auditory perception and development
of auditory perception. Networking can definitely get you into bigger
Student Network Gathering at The Annual General Meeting in Ottawa
In conjunction with the Canadian Language and Literacy Research
Network Annual General Meeting The Student Network will assemble
for pizza and drinks on Friday at 8:30 pm. The purpose of the meeting
is to bring together students and researchers from across the country,
to meet, share our interests and discuss the future of the Student
Network. Anyone interested in attending is invited.