Senior Lecturer in Hindi, Coordinator of the Hindi Language Program
Spring 2024 Office Hours: Wednesday 11am-1pm and Thursday 2-3pm in STH 641.
Shilpa Parnami coordinates the Hindi-Urdu program and teaches Hindi language and India-focused culture courses in English (Modern India through Bollywood and Hinglish in India). She adopts an integrated approach to teaching language and culture and strives to create learning experiences that empower students to think critically and communicate effectively. Hindi-Urdu courses typically include a diverse mix of students that have either no or varied levels of prior knowledge of Hindi and South Asian culture given their cultural heritage. Parnami adopts differentiated instructional strategies to individualize the learning experience for each student in the program and ensures that students have all the instructional support and resources that they need to succeed in their learning. Effective use of instructional technology is also integral to her teaching, and she adopts varied digital tools to build classroom community, promote learner autonomy, and facilitate asynchronous learning. As an educator, Parnami invests in building meaningful connections with her students by creating an inclusive, compassionate, and collaborative learning environment in her classroom.
At the university level, Parnami has collaborated with campus-wide faculty to co-teach courses for BU’s signature Cross-College Challenge (XCC) that offers a unique project-based learning experience in which interdisciplinary student teams from across BU’s undergraduate colleges tackle real-world problems and develop leadership, teamwork, oral communication, and research skills. She has taught three different XCC courses since the program began in 2018, including a course on Social Justice through Global Music and Film, and individually led sessions on interpersonal and digital communication, qualitative research methods, and critical media studies. Additionally, she has also served as a faculty consultant and a steering committee member for XCC and developed pedagogical resources for the program.
Parnami has also been involved in teacher training initiatives through federally funded STARTALK grants in the past, and is currently one of the teacher-trainers for the Hindi Urdu Teacher Training Institute run in partnership by New York University, University of Texas at Austin, Michigan State University and Yale University. She is also an active member of the newly reorganized South Asian Language Teachers’ Association (SALTA).
Her research interests include language pedagogy, sociolinguistics, critical discourse analysis, intercultural communication, and Hindi cinema and popular culture. She is currently developing open-source materials for Hindi and Urdu language instruction and working on research projects that focus on internet-mediated intercultural exchanges between Hindi and English language learners in the United States and India.