Research Summary

My research focuses on two main areas: L2 methodology and teacher education and the effects of dual language immersion education on academic achievement.


  • Doctor of Philosophy, Applied Linguistics, University of Texas at Austin. Project: Tense and Mood in the German Colloquial Standard


Johanna Watzinger-Tharp is an Associate Professor in the Department of Linguistics at the University of Utah. She served as Associate Dean for International Programs in the College of Humanities from 2009-2015, and directed the U’s International Studies Program from 2009-2016. Her research focuses on language pedagogy, dual language immersion and teacher education, and has been published in a variety of scholarly journals. She currently serves as co-editor for Issues in Language Program Direction. Her publications also include co-edited volumes and German language textbooks. In 2010, the American Council for the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) awarded her the Anthony Papalia Award for Excellence in Teacher Education.
Johanna Watzinger-Tharp has served on various national committees, including the Executive Council of the American Association of Teachers of German (AATG), the AP German Test Development Committee (College Board), the SAT German Committee (ETS), and the Second Language Teaching & Learning Executive Committee of the MLA, the. She is also the past president of the American Association of University Supervisors and Coordinators (AAUSC). In 2007, she was appointed co-chair of the Utah World Language Council by Governor Jon Huntsman Jr. The Council produced the Utah Language Roadmap for the 21st Century, supported by the National Security Education Programs (NSEP) Language Flagship in 2008, which led to the creation of dual language immersion programs in Utah. Since then, she has worked with public and higher education to advance dual immersion in Utah and the U.S.