Humanities and Arts

Contact Information

Salisbury Laboratories, 109
Phone: +1-508-831-6573
Fax: +1-508-831-5932

Esther F. Boucher-Yip

Esther Boucher-Yip has taught all levels of English in many parts of the world including Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei, China, the United Kingdom, and the United States. She has taught communication skills and writing courses at college level for over a decade. Her teaching approach is informed by her own experience in language learning and with theories of second language acquisition and their pedagogical applications. Both her studies and her experience have taught her that there is no one method or idea that guarantees successful language learning. While the mastery of standard English is necessary, she encourages international students at WPI to participate as much as they can in and out of the classroom and learn how language is used in various social and academic settings. She is excited to be teaching at WPI, an institution that promotes language learning, embraces cultural diversity, and encourages international education. In addition to researching and publishing in the field of English language teaching, her research interests include minority language maintenance, in particular how language policies affect language use in indigenous communities. She is currently working on a longitudinal study of language shift and maintenance among the Semai community in Peninsular Malaysia.

Research Interests

  • Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages
  • Applied Linguistics
  • Sociolinguistics


  • BA with Honors, University of Malaya, 1994
  • Diploma of Education, University of Malaya, 1995
  • MPhil, University of Cambridge, 1999
  • EdD, University of Leicester, 2005

Featured Publications

  • “Drama in the Asian EFL Classroom: Using Readers Theatre to Improve Communicative Competence” (with Patrick Ng)
  • “Readers Theatre: Improving Oral Proficiency in a Japanese University EFL Course” (with Patrick Ng)     “Crossing Borders” in Becoming Contributing Professionals (edited by Joy Egbert)
  • “Language Planning “In Action”: The Singapore Experience.”
  • “Patterns of Language Use in one Semai Community in Peninsular Malaysia,"
  • “Negotiating Tongues: Language Choice and Identity of the Orang Asli of Peninsular Malaysia.”  
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