Ann Devitt
Assistant Professor, Education

Biography

I am an Assistant Professor of Modern Languages at the School of Education in Trinity College Dublin. My research interests lie in the area of language teaching and learning and technology enhanced learning. I am particularly interested in the use of computational, corpus and network science methods to examine language data. My background is in language and computation. I hold a degree in French and Italian, a Masters in Theoretical Linguistics and a PhD in Computer Science. In industry, I have worked on machine translation and speech synthesis products in the language domain as well as prototypes for network management systems in the telecoms domain. I teach and supervise masters and doctoral research in the area of language teaching and learning and technology enhanced learning.

Publications and Further Research Outputs

Peer-Reviewed Publications

Bootstrapping Learning in a Chinese Beginner's Classroom in, editor(s)Yang Lu , Teaching and Learning Chinese in Higher Education: Theoretical and Practical Issues, Abingdon, OXON, Routledge, 2017, pp157 - 177, [Ann Devitt and Weiming Liu] Book Chapter, 2017

Knowledge, Belief and Practice in Language Teacher Education: Integration and Implementation of Threshold Concepts over a teaching career in, editor(s)Land, R., Meyer J.H.F. and Flanagan, M.T. , Threshold Concepts in Practice, Rotterdam, Taipei & Boston, Sense Publishers, 2016, pp309 - 320, [David Moroney, Eugene McKendry, Ann Devitt] Book Chapter, 2016

Gene Dalton and Ann Devitt, Gaeilge Gaming: Assessing how games can help children to learn Irish, International Journal of Game-Based Learning, 6, (4), 2016, p22 - 38 Journal Article, 2016

Gene Dalton and Ann Devitt, Irish in a 3D World: Engaging Primary School Children, Language Learning and Technology, 20, (1), 2016, p21 - 33 Journal Article, 2016 TARA - Full Text

Kearns, M., Devitt, A., and Brady M., , Utilising an Assessment for learning (Afl) approach with large student cohorts in higher education settings,, ECER 2016, European Conference on Educational Research, University College Dublin, August 23 -26h, 2016, pp1 - 3 Conference Paper, 2016

Brady Mairead, Ann Devitt, Patrick Geoghegan, Conor O'Flanagan, David Clince, Ryan Kane, Michael Burns, Camille Julien-Levantidis, When Competitiveness Overshadows Learning. A Case Study Of A Digital Game Based Learning And Assessment Initiative In A Third Level Setting., Proceedings of the 6th Irish Conference on Game-Based Learning, Irish Game based Learning Conference, Trinity College Dublin, 1st and 2nd Sept, edited by Felicia, P, Peirce, N, Brady, M and Devitt, A , 6th, 2016, pp1-6 Conference Paper, 2016

Felicia, P., Neil Peirce, Mairead Brady and Ann Devitt(ed.), Irish Game Based Learning Conference, Proceedings of the 6th Irish Conference on Game-Based Learning, Trinity College Dublin, 6th, 1-2 September, 2016, 1-334 p Proceedings of a Conference, 2016

Devitt, A and Brady M., , Autonomy And Challenge In Simulation Games For Marketing Education, Irish Game based Learning Conference, Trinity College Dublin, 1st and 2nd Sept, 2016, pp1-4 Conference Paper, 2016

Ann Devitt, Joe Condon, Gene Dalton, Jane O'Connell and Melanie Ní Dhuinn, An maith leat an Ghaeilge? An analysis of variation in primary pupil attitudes to Irish in the Growing Up in Ireland study, International Journal of Bilingual Education and Bilingualism, 2016 Journal Article, 2016 DOI

Jameson, E. Brady, M., and Devitt, A, Towards A Framework For The Evaluation Of Digital Game-based Learning At The Third Level, Irish Game based Learning Conference, Trinity College Dublin, 1st and 2nd Sept, 2016, pp1-3 Conference Paper, 2016

Dr. Ann Devitt, Gene Dalton, Melanie Ní Dhuinn, Jane O'Toole ad Dr. Joe Condon, "Is maith liom Gaeilge". An analysis of variation in primary pupil attitudes to Gaeilge in the Growing up in Ireland study, focusing on the Teacher factor., ESAI 40th Annual Conference. "Educational Research and Practice in times of Transition: Looking to the Future", Maynooth University and Carton House , April 2015, 2015 Conference Paper, 2015

Mairead Brady, Ann Devitt, Markus Lamest, Stephen Gomez, Winner takes all? The role of gamification in learning and Higher Order Processing, Academy of Marketing Conference, Limerick, Ireland, 7-9 July, 2015 Conference Paper, 2015

Ann Devitt, Markus Lamest, Mairead Brady, Nicki Newman & Stephen Gomez, Marketing simulations: experiential learning in a simulated serious game for higher-order cognitive development, The Association of Business Schools 4th Annual Learning, Teaching and Student Experience Conference, , York, UK, April, 2015, pp1 - 3 Conference Paper, 2015 TARA - Full Text

Ann Devitt, Semantic connectivity and high utility words in core reading program corpus, Society for the Scientific Study of Reading 2015 Conference, The Big Island, Hawaii, 15-18 July, 2015 Conference Paper, 2015

Ann Devitt, Melanie Ní Dhuinn, Brendan MacMahon, Multilingualism challenges and opportunities in the Irish Post-primary education sector, American Educational Research Association Conference, Chicago, US, 16-20 April 2015, 2015, pppponline Conference Paper, 2015

Gene Dalton and Ann Devitt, The best of both worlds - drawing together gaming and virtual worlds for children's language learning, Eurocall 2015 (European Association for Computer-Assisted Language Learning Conference), Padova, Italy, 26-29 August 2015, 2015 Conference Paper, 2015

Devitt, A. Brady M., Lamest, M., Dalton, G., Newman N and S Gomez , Serious Games in Marketing Education: Developing Higher Order Cognitive Skills through collaboration in a Simulation Game, , INTED 2015, 9th International Technology, Education and Development Conference, Madrid, March , 2015 Conference Paper, 2015 TARA - Full Text

Ann Devitt, Joe Condon, Gene Dalton, Jane O'Connell, Melanie Ní Dhuinn, An maith leat Gaeilge?: An analysis of variation in primary pupil attitudes to Gaeilge in Growing Up in Ireland study, Growing Up in Ireland Annual Research Conference, Dublin, Ireland, 26 November 2014, 2014 Conference Paper, 2014

Ann Devitt, Marita Kerin, and Helen O'Sullivan, Threshold Concepts and Practices in Teacher Education: Professional, Educator and Student Perspectives, Fourth Bienniel Conference on Threshold Concepts: From personal practice to communities of practice, Trinity College, Dublin, 28-29 June 2012, edited by Catherine O'Mahony, Avril Buchanan, Mary O'Rourke and Bettie Higgs , NAIRTL, Ireland, 2014, pp129 - 132 Conference Paper, 2014 URL

Ann Devitt and Eugene McKendry, Threshold Concepts in Language Teacher Knowledge: Practice versus Policy, Annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, Philadelphia, 3-7 April 2014, 2014, pponline Conference Paper, 2014 TARA - Full Text URL

Activating empathy: Language teacher training through a Chinese course in, editor(s)Linda Mingfang Li and Minjie Xing , Innovation and Consolidation in Learning and Teaching Chinese, London, Sinolingua, 2014, pp74 - 85, [Weiming Liu and Ann Devitt] Book Chapter, 2014

Weiming Liu and Ann Devitt, Using Reciprocal Peer Coteaching to developing learner autonomy: an action research project with a beginners' Chinese class, Language Learning in Higher Education, 4, (2), 2014, p489 - 505 Journal Article, 2014

Ann Devitt and Eugene McKendry, Threshold Concepts in Language Teacher Education: the voice of the professional, Educational Studies Association of Ireland Annual Conference, Athlone, Ireland, 10-12 April 2014, 2014 Conference Paper, 2014

Gene Dalton and Ann Devitt, Computer Games for Langauge Learning: The child's perspective, European Conference of Computer Assisted Language Learning (EuroCALL), Groningen, the Netherlands, 2014 Conference Paper, 2014

David Moroney and Ann Devitt, Knowledge, Belief and Practice in Language Teacher Education: Integration and Implementation of Threshold Concepts over a teaching career, 5th Biennial International Threshold Concepts Conference, Durham, UK, 9-11 July, 2014 Conference Paper, 2014

Ann Devitt and Khurshid Ahmad, Is There a Language of Sentiment? An Analysis of Lexical Resources for Sentiment Analysis, Language Resources and Evaluation, 47, (2), 2013, p475 - 511 Journal Article, 2013 DOI URL TARA - Full Text

Gene Dalton and Ann Devitt, Focus on form in a virtual world: Unlocking communicative competence in children learning Irish as a second language, Conference of the Computer Assisted Language Instruction Consortium (CALICO), Big Island, Hawaii, 21-25 May 2013, 2013 Conference Paper, 2013

Gene Dalton and Ann Devitt, Learning Irish in a virtual world: Can new technologies be effective in bridging the motivation gap in the child's language learning experience at school?, International Association of Applied Linguistics European Junior Researcher Meeting, Dublin, Ireland, 2013 Conference Paper, 2013

The role of students in a power sharing context: A study of the development of a Chinese teacher's identity. in, editor(s)Linda Mingfang & Xing, Minjie , Developing Pedagogies for Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language in Higher Education, London, Sinolingua, 2013, pp45 - 54, [Weiming Liu and Ann Devitt] Book Chapter, 2013

Weiming Liu and Ann Devitt, Autonomous Learners and Transformative Practitioners: The implementation of collaborative peer teaching in a language teacher training course, The International Journal of Adult, Community and Professional Learning, 19, (1), 2013, p27 - 36 Journal Article, 2013

Ann Devitt and Marita Kerin, Crossing the Threshold in Initial Teacher Education: Identity and Competencies , The European conference on educational research, Istanbul, 10-13 September 2013, 2013 Conference Paper, 2013

Ann Devitt, Marita Kerin, Helen O'Sullivan, Threshold Concepts and Practices in Teacher Education: professional, educator and student perspectives, 4th Biennial Threshold Concepts Conference, Trinity College, Dublin, 28-29 June 2012, 2012 Conference Paper, 2012 TARA - Full Text

Ann Devitt, Marita Kerin, Helen O'Sullivan and Elizabeth Oldham, Thresholds Concepts and Practices for Teacher Education: a different lens or just a new pair of drapes, ESAI 2012 (37th Annual Educational Studies Association of Ireland Conference), University College Cork, 29-31 March 2012, 2012 Conference Paper, 2012

Weiming Liu and Ann Devitt, Action research and Chinese teacher training, The 11th International Conference on Chinese Language Teaching, Xi'an, China, 16-17 August, 2012, 2012 Conference Paper, 2012

Weiming Liu and Ann Devitt, Autonomous learners and transformative practitioners: the implementation of peer teaching in a language teacher training course, Nineteenth International Conference on Learning, The Institute of Education, University of London, London, UK, 14 to 16 August 2012, 2012 Conference Paper, 2012 URL

Ann Devitt, A New Apprenticeship in Language Teacher Education, AERA 2012 (Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association 2012), Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, 13-16 April 2012, 2012 Conference Paper, 2012 URL TARA - Full Text

The use of peer teaching in a Chinese classroom in, editor(s)Dian Huang and Minjie Xing , Innovations in Teaching and Learning Chinese as a Foreign Language, London, Sinolingua, 2012, pp145 - 154, [Weiming Liu and Ann Devitt] Book Chapter, 2012

Ann Devitt, Elizabeth Oldham and Marita Kerin, Beginning a career of learning about learning: a case study of student teachers in an initial teacher education programme in Ireland, Teachers' Life-cycle from Initial Teacher education to Experienced Professional: 2011 ATEE Annual Conference, Riga, 26-30 August 2011, edited by Irēna Zogla and Lūcija Rutka , Association for Teacher Education in Europe, 2012, pp283 - 296 Conference Paper, 2012 TARA - Full Text URL

Liu, W. & Devitt, A., The role of the native speaking student-teachers in a collaborative peer teaching context, The 10th BCLTS International Symposium on Learning Chinese as a Foreign Language in Higher Education, University of Central Lancashire, UK, 11July - 13 July, 2012 Conference Paper, 2012 URL

Ann Devitt, Lexical cohesion in the language of science textbooks , ECER 2011 (European Conference on Educational Research), Berlin, Germany, 13-16 September 2011, 2011 Conference Paper, 2011

Ann Devitt, Sean Devitt, Marita Kerin and Elizabeth Oldham, Back to school: how becoming a reflective learner impacts on practice, European Conference on Educational Research 2011, Berlin, Germany, 13-16 September 2011, 2011 Conference Paper, 2011

Liu, W. & Devitt, A., Peer Teaching and Teaching Chinese, 1st Interdisciplinary Linguistics Conference, Queen's University Belfast, UK, 14-15 October 2011, 2011 Conference Paper, 2011

Devitt, A., Girvan, C., Liu, W., McLoughlin, H., Vocabulary Development in a Virtual World: the Role of Virtual Realia, EUROCALL Conference 2010 (European Association for Computer-Assisted Language Learning, Bordeaux, France, 8-11 September 2010, 2010, ppCD-ROM Conference Paper, 2010

Ann Devitt and Khurshid Ahmad, The language of emotion and financial news, XVI European Symposium on Language for Special Purposes (LSP07), Hamburg, Germany, 27-31 August 2007, edited by Walther von Hahn, & Cristina Vertan, , Peter Lang, 2010, pp40 - 49 Conference Paper, 2010

Ann Devitt and Khurshid Ahmad, Sentiment Analysis and the Use of Extrinsic Datasets in Evaluation, Language Resources and Evaluation Conference (LREC 2008), Marrakech, Morocco, 28-30 May, 2008 Conference Paper, 2008 TARA - Full Text

Ann Devitt and Khurshid Ahmad, Sentiment Polarity Identification in Financial News: A Cohesion-based Approach, Annual Meeting of the Association of Computational Linguistics (ACL 2007), Prague, Czech Republic, 25-27 June, 2007 Conference Paper, 2007 TARA - Full Text

Ann Devitt, 'Arrangement and a method relating to performance monitoring', European Patent Office, pct/ep2007052168, 2007 Patent, 2007 URL

Ann Devitt, Boris Danev and Katarina Matusikova, Constructing Bayesian Networks Automatically using Ontologies, Second Workshop on Formal Ontologies Meets Industry (FOMI 2006), Trento, Italy, 14 December 2006, 2006 Conference Paper, 2006 TARA - Full Text

Javier Baliosian, Huw Oliver, Epifanio Salamanca, Boris Danev, Ann Devitt and Gerard Parr, Self-configuration for Radio Access Networks, Proceedings of 7th IEEE Workshop on Policies for Distributed Systems and Networks (Policy 2006), London, Ontario, Canada, 5-7 June 2006, 2006 Conference Paper, 2006

Javier Baliosian and Ann Devitt, 'Method for forecasting unstable policy enforcements ', European Patent Office, 067560482-1244 PCT/IB2006051771, 2006 Patent, 2006

Ann Devitt and Boris Danev, 'Arrangement and method for network management', European Patent Office, pct/ep2006069436, 2006 Patent, 2006

Javier Baliosian, Franciose Sailhan, Ann Devitt and Anne-Marie Bosneag, The Omega Architecture: Towards Adaptable, Self-Managed Networks, Workshop on Distributed Autonomous Network Management Systems (DAMNS 2006), Dublin, Ireland, 16 June 2006, 2006 Conference Paper, 2006

Javier Baliosian and Ann Devitt, Forecasting Unstable Policy Enforcement, IEEE International Conference on Systems and Networks Communications (ICSNC 2006), Tahiti, French Polynesia, November 2006, IEEE, 2006, pp37 Conference Paper, 2006

Ann Devitt, Joseph Duffin and Robert Moloney, Exploiting network topology in mining sequential patterns from telecommunications alarm data, MineNet Workshop at SIGCOMM 2005, Philadelphia, USA, August 2005, 2005, pp179 - 184 Conference Paper, 2005 TARA - Full Text

Ann Devitt and Joseph Duffin, Topographical Proximity: Exploiting Domain Knowledge for Sequential Data Mining, Temporal Data Mining Workshop at ICDM 2005,, Houston, Texas, November 2005, ACM Press, 2005, pp33 - 40 Conference Paper, 2005

Ann Devitt, Joseph Duffin and Robert Moloney, 'Network alarm management', European Patent Office, pct/se2005002014, 2005 Patent, 2005

Ann Devitt and Carl Vogel., The Topology of WordNet: Some Metrics, Proceedings of the Second International WordNet Conference - GWC2004, Brno, Czech Republic, January, 2004, 2004 Conference Paper, 2004

Ann Devitt and Carl Vogel, Using WordNet hierarchies to pinpoint differences in related texts, Ontologies and Information Extraction Workshop at EUROLAN 2003, Bucharest, Romania, August 2003, 2003 Conference Paper, 2003

Non-Peer-Reviewed Publications

Nicki Newman, Ann Devitt, Markus Lamest, Mairead Brady & Stephen Gomez , Marketing Simulation Research Report for Pearson UK. , London, 2014, p1 - 20 Report, 2014

Marie-Therese Batardiere (UL), Anne Brindley (GMIT), Kristin Brogan (IT Tralee), Frances Carr (The Old Schoolhouse Montessori School), Ann Devitt (TCD), Tanya Flanagan (St Farnan's, Co. Kildare), Aine Furlong (WIT), Barbara Geraghty (UL), Mary Ann Kenny (IT Blanchardstown), Deirdre Kirwan (Scoil Bhride, Dublin), Agnieszka Matys (Polska Szkola SEN, Dublin), Niamh Nestor (UCD), Susanna Nocchi (DIT), Conny Opitz (TCD), Frederique Rantz (PPLI), Mary Ruane (IRAAL), Christiane Schönfeld (UL), Sarah Smyth (TCD), Margot Spencer (UCC), Riana Walsh (IT Tallaght), OVFL Response to DES Consultation on Foreign Languages in Irish Education, 2014 Report, 2014 URL

Ann Devitt, New spaces in language education: language learning in a virtual world, ESAI (Educational Studies Association of Ireland) Annual Conference 2010, Dundalk, Ireland, 26 March 2010, 2010 Oral Presentation, 2010

Research Expertise

Description

My research interests lie in the area of language teaching and learning. I am particularly interested in the use of computational, corpus and network science methods to explore computational and cognitive models of language processing and learning. I also conduct research in the area of technology enhanced learning, specifically computer-aided language learning, technology enhanced assessment, digital game-based learning and immersive learning environments. I contribute regularly as a reviewer for conferences and journals in the fields of education and computational linguistics and act as an evaluator for EU research programmes.

Projects

  • Title
    • Enabling Technology Enhanced Assessment OF/FOR/AS Learning in Higher Education: The Evidence
  • Summary
    • This project assumes a view of assessment that is embedded and integral to teaching and learning and where assessment data is used by both staff and students to progress learning towards learning goals that are explicit and shared. It will focus on assessment as a measurement and record of learning, ultimately for accreditation (summative) as well as assessment as a tool for both teachers and students to evaluate and progress learning (assessment for learning). Assessment as learning focuses on the student as an actor in the assessment process, setting success criteria, peer and self-assessing, and using these activities to progress their learning. The Digital Roadmap identifies a clear need to prioritise the development of high-impact and best practices within the learning environment 'that leverage the potential of digital technologies to support student learning and substantially contribute to evidencing pedagogical excellence'. (Digital Roadmap, p49). Technology offers great potential in the area of assessment, opening opportunities for experiential learning, collaborative learning, speedy or instant feedback and among a range of possible affordances. However, the reality of incorporating technology into institutional structures and of transforming pedagogical practice to embrace the possibilities of technology can be fraught with difficulty. The aim of this project is to conduct a systematic literature review and meta-analysis to synthesize and summarize previous literature and to identify best and next practices through a depth of understanding of prior research in this domain. Incorporating both a quantitative and qualitative perspective. This will provide a holistic overview of research findings, generating a solid evidence base for professional transformation in this domain.
  • Funding Agency
    • Irish Research Council
  • Date From
    • 9/1/2017
  • Date To
    • 9/1/2018
  • Title
    • Semantic connectivity: a new computational framework to investigate distributional properties of language which optimise second language acquisition
  • Summary
    • This project is a computational corpus analysis of semantic connectivity in general language and second language learner data to explore the hypothesis that Small World Network (SWN) properties that hold in lexical knowledge bases are not just an artefact of language representations but may be a causal factor in second language acquisition. Research has shown that humans are highly sensitive to distributional properties of language data and that this impacts on language acquisition. This will be the first systematic corpus analysis of second language acquisition data which focuses on semantic connectivity, leveraging the powerful distributional regularities of SWNs, and has the potential to open a new dimension in the field of language acquisition.
  • Funding Agency
    • Fulbright Commission
  • Date From
    • 1/1/2016
  • Date To
    • 1/7/2016
  • Title
    • Threshold Concepts in Language Teacher Education (TC4LTE)
  • Summary
    • Threshold Concepts (TCs) have emerged over the last ten years as a useful metaphor and tool for curriculum design and research with work conducted in higher education settings. TCs are defined as those without which it is not possible to engage in the practices and discourse of a discipline, in this case language teaching. This project aims to identify threshold concepts for language teacher education and the conditions that facilitate the learning of these concepts. The project incorporates the voice of professionals in the field articulating key moments of learning in their careers and the voice of the student teacher articulating their learning over the course of their initial teacher education programmes. The project aims to draw on the broad experience of language teachers North and South to identify threshold concepts for language teaching and to examine the degree and manner of integration of threshold concepts within ITE programmes North and South.
  • Funding Agency
    • SCoTENS
  • Date From
    • September 2012
  • Date To
    • August 2013
  • Title
    • Automatic analysis of text in French, German and Spanish
  • Summary
    • Sourcing, testing and building graphical user interface for text analysis tools for French, Spanish and German.
  • Funding Agency
    • Enterprise Ireland
  • Date From
    • 2009
  • Date To
    • 2009

Keywords

Computational linguistics; Computers & Education; Foreign Languages Education; LANGUAGE ACQUISITION; Language Acquisition (first & second); Literacy; Natural Language Programming; Teacher Education

Recognition

Representations

Reviewer for European Union research programmes

Reviewer for British Journal of Educational Technology

Reviewer for Language Resources and Evaluation journal

Reviewer for AERA (Annual Conference of the American Educational Research Association) 2014-Current

Reviewer for Irish Educational Studies journal

Reviewer for ACL (Association for Computational Linguistics) 2008-Current

Reviewer for EMNLP (Empirical Methods on Natural Language Processing) 2009-Current

NWO (Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research) Humanities Research Proposal Reviewer 2012

External Examiner (PhD) Queen's University Belfast 2014

Awards and Honours

Fulbright TechImpact Award 2015-16

Memberships

Member of Educational Studies Association of Ireland 2010 – Current

Member of IRAAL (Irish Association for Applied Linguistics) 2008 – Current

Member of Association of Computational Linguists 2006

Member of AERA (American Educational Research Association) 2011 – Current