Assistant Professor

Ph.D., Language and literacy education, University of British Columbia, 2003

M.A., French Language and Literature, Université Laval, 1997

B.Ed., Secondary Education, French and English, University of British Columbia, 1992

B.A., Double Major – English and French, University of British Columbia, 1991

Room: 70 Laurier E. (123), Ottawa, ON, K1N 6N5
Office: 613.562.5800 ext. 3384
Work E-mail[email protected]

Valia Spiliotopoulos

Fields of interest

  • University Immersion and Content and Language Integrated Learning
  • Second Language Education (English and French) in multicultural settings
  • Bi/plurilingualism
  • Technology and innovation in language education
  • Intercultural competence development and internationalization of the curriculum
  • Teacher education and faculty development
  • Educational and language assessment
  • Research methods in education and applied linguistics


My current research interests focus on immersion/ content and language integrated learning and bi/multilingual students' academic achievement and sociocultural development in higher education. I have spent over 20 years teaching and supporting scholarship and innovation in universities and K-12 education in British Columbia, Quebec, and Ontario.  I have also held leadership positions in the areas of English and French language education, teacher education, faculty development, and assessment.

Research projects

  • 2020 – 2022: Identifying Requirements and Gaps in French as a Second Language Teacher Education (CASLT research grant).  Arnott, S., Smith, C. W., Battistuzzi, A., Culligan, K., Dicks, J., Kristmanson, P., Masson, M., Spiliotopoulos, V., & Wernicke, M.
  • 2019 – 2021: Investigating the impact of curricular and instructional redesign to address students’ linguistic diversity in disciplinary, English-medium content courses. (SFU internal research funding) PI: Valia Spiliotopoulos CI: Roumi Ilieva, Amanda Wallace, Joel Heng Hartse, Ismaeil Fazel, Bong-gi Sohn

Courses taught

  • Maitrise ès arts en études du Bilinguisme :
    • BIL5502 – Méthodologies de Recherche en Études du Bilinguisme
  • English Immersion program
    • ESL 2181-C100 – Receptive Skills
      • Communication in Everyday Life
    • ESL 2181 – E200 – Receptive Skills
      • Microeconomics

Selected publications

Papers in Professional Journals

  • Smith, C., Spiliotopoulos, V., Masson, M., & Kristmanson, P. (2022). Initiatives for second language teacher education: Cases from Canadian universities. The Language Educator. Special Issue, 34-37.

  • Spiliotopoulos, V. (2022). ESP Project Leader Profile : Valia Spiliotopoulos. In Knight (Ed.). English for Specific Purposes Project Leader Profiles: The Leaadership Communication of 55 ESP Project Leaders. Candlin & Mynard ePublishing, Hong Kong. 4 pages.

Papers in refereed journals

  • Smith, C., Masson, M., Spiliotopoulos, V., & Kristmanson, P. (2022). A course or a pathway? Addressing French as a second language teacher recruitment and retention in Canadian B.Ed. programs. Canadian Journal of Education/Revue Canadienne De l’éducation46(2), 412–440.
  • Spiliotopoulos, V. Wallace, A. Ilieva, R. (2022). Diffusing Innovation to Support Faculty Engagement in the Integration of Language and Literacy Across the Disciplines in an Internationalized University. Higher Education Research and Development. 23 pages
  • Tsiriotakis, I., Spiliotopoulos, V., Grünke, M., Konstantinos, K. (2021). The effects of a cognitive apprenticeship model on the argumentative texts of EFL Learners. Journal of Education and Learning.
  • Wallace, A., Spiliotopoulos, V., Ilieva, R. (2020) CLIL collaborations in higher education: A critical perspective. English Teaching & Learning, 25 pages.           
  • Ilieva, R., Wallace, A., & Spiliotopoulos, V. (2019). Institutional Roles and Identity Construction of Applied Linguistics Faculty Involved in Interdisciplinary Collaborations for Multilingual Student SuccessTESL Canada Journal, 36(1), 71–96.
  • Bournot-Trites, M., Zappa-Hollman, S. & Spiliotopoulos, V.(2018).  Foreign language teachers’ intercultural competence and legitimacy during an international teaching experience. Study Abroad, Research in Second Language Acquisition and International Education, 3 (2), 275-309. doi: 10.1075/sar.16022.bou
  • Spiliotopoulos, V. (2018).  Lessons learned from immersion in western Canada’s multilingual and multicultural post-secondary context across the disciplines. Official Languages and Bilingualism Institute Working Papers.
  • Bournot-Trites, M., Belliveau, G., Spiliotopoulos, V. Seror, J. (2007). The role of drama on cultural sensitivity, motivation, and literacy in a second language context. Journal of Learning through the Arts. 3.1, 35 pages.
  • Spiliotopoulos, V. & Carey, S. (2005). Investigating the role of identity in L2 writing using electronic discussion boards. Canadian Modern Language Review, 62 (1), 87 – 109.

Chapters in books

  • Spiliotopoulos, V. (accepted). Critical perspectives towards assessing impact and outcomes in language development within business education. In Beck, K. & Ilieva, R.(Eds.). Language, Culture, and Education in an Internationalized: Perspectives and Practices of Faculty, Students, and Staff. Bloomsbury Press.

  • Spiliotopoulos, V. Van Viegen, S., Early, M., &  Lam, C. (in press). Teacher professional learning communities and language assessment reform in western Canada. In B. Baker & L. Taylor (Eds.). Studies in Language Testing. Cambridge University Press. 16 pages.

  • Spiliotopoulos, V. (in press). Faculty Engagement and content-based language education: Discover, Dream, Design, and Destiny approaches to French teacher education in western Canada. In S. Ballinger, R. Fielding, & D. Tedick (Eds.), International Perspectives on Teacher Development for Content and Language Integration. Multilingual Matters.

  • Sohn, B., & Spiliotopoulos, V. (2021).  Scaffolding Peer Interaction within a Language and Content-Integrated Business Curriculum: A case-study in a Western Canadian University. In Dippold, D & Heron, M. (Eds.). Meaningful Interaction at the Internationalised University: Moving from Research to Impact. London, UK. Taylor and Francis. 15 pages.
  • Spiliotopoulos, V. (2011). Towards a technology-enhanced university education. In A. Kitchenham (Ed.). Blended Learning across Disciplines: Models for Implementation. Hershey, PA: IGI Global.

Selected conference presentations

  • Spiliotopoulos, V. & Sohn, B. (2021, August). Integrating Language Learning and Critical Thinking in Business Education. International Association of Applied Linguistics (AILA). Groningen, Holland
  • Spiliotopoulos, V., Van Viegen, S. Early, M., & James, C. (2021, June) Teacher Professional Learning Communities and Language Assessment Reform in B.C. Canadian Society for Studies in Education (CSSE).
  • Spiliotopoulos, V., Wernicke, M., & Ankenman, S. (2021, June). L’impact d’une approche CLIL dans la formation des futurs enseignants de français en Colombie Britannique. Association Canadienne de Linguistique Appliquée (ACLA).
  • Spiliotopoulos, V., Ilieva, R., & Wallace, A. (2021, June). Beyond EAP: Sustaining EAL/multilingual student transition into mainstream disciplinary university programs. Canadian Society for Studies in Higher Education (CSSHE).
  • Lin, A., Séror, J. & Spiliotopoulos, V. (2021, April). “We have to do this: teach and assess students in one language only!”—Really? Rethinking discourses and alternatives: Problematizing the Recurrent Discourses Regarding Academic Literacies Development and the Medium of Instruction in Higher Education. Canadian Centre for Research on Language Studies and Language Planning (CCERBAL).  Ottawa, ON
  • Spiliotopoulos, V., Wallace, A., & Fazel, I. (2020). Opportunities and challenges in Assessing Multilingual Adult Learners in University Settings. Proceedings of Adult Education in Global Times, pp. 637 – 643.
  • Spiliotopoulos, V. & Ilieva, R. (2019, March). Reframing faculty collaboration in support of multilingual students: Leadership perspectives and strategies. American Association of Applied Linguistics (AAAL), Atlanta, GE.
  • Ilieva, R. Spiliotopoulos, V. & Wallace, A. (2018, March). Language faculty involved in interdisciplinary collaborations for multilingual student success. American Association of Applied Linguistics (AAAL), Chicago, IL.
  • Spiliotopoulos, V., Rubeli, D., & Spector, S. (2017, October). Integrating language, content, and critical thinking in an undergraduate business course: Assessing the impact on student learning and faculty engagement. Integrating Content and Language in Higher Education (ICLHE). University of Copenhagen, Denmark.
  • Spiliotopoulos, V. (2017, October). From ‘lone ranger’ to ‘community of practice’: Supporting faculty engagement and integrating content and language at the institutional level. Integrating Content and Language in Higher Education (ICLHE), University of Copenhagen, Denmark.
  • Spiliotopoulos, V. (2017, March). Case studies in assessing discipline-specific language/communication skills in undergraduate business programs. In The Multilingual Student in Higher Education: Exploring Assessment Issues. Panel on Language Assessment with Van Viegen S., Valeo, A. Kinnear, P. Teachers of English as a Second or Other Language (TESOL), Seattle, WA.
  • Spiliotopoulos, V., Van Viegen, S., Heng Hartse, J. (2016, October) Reframing the narrative of supporting students’ English language development in higher education across the disciplines. International Society for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (ISSOTL). Los Angeles, CA.
  • Van Viegen S., Spiliotopoulos, V. & Heng Hartse, J (2016, July). Towards a disciplinary literacy approach to supporting EAL students in higher education. The Multilingual University Conference. University College London, UK.
  • Sabatier, C. & Spiliotopoulos, V. (2016, May). Rethinking curriculum and instruction of French as a second language in B.C. Canadian Society for Studies in Education (CSSE), Calgary, AB.
  • Spiliotopoulos, V. & Kristofferson, K. (2015, April). Interdisciplinary Professional Learning Communities: Interweaving the language and culture of business and education. AERA (American Educational Research Association), Chicago, IL.

Technical and research reports

  • Arnott, S., Smith, C. W., Battistuzzi, A., Culligan, K., Dicks, J., Kristmanson, P., Masson, M., Spiliotopoulos, V., & Wernicke, M. (2023). Identifying requirements and gaps in FSL teacher training: Recommendations and guidelines (Research report). Canadian Association of Second Language Teachers

  • Van Viegen, S. Early, M., Spiliotopoulos, V. & James, C. (2020). Building Capacity for Supporting English Language Teaching in British Columbia Education: Report on Field Test of ELL Standards in the Lower Mainland. Vancouver, British Columbia.
  • Sabatier, C., Léger, R., Spiliotopoulos, V. & Pajot, D(2017). French as a second language and British Columbia’s second language education policy. Victoria, B.C. Ministry of Education.
  • Sabatier, C., Spiliotopoulos, V. & Pajot, D. (2016). Programmes de Français langue seconde: Examen des politiques linguistiques éducatives pancanadiennes. Victoria, BC Ministry of Education.
  • Spiliotopoulos, V. (2013).  Assurance of learning report for AACSB accreditation.   University of British Columbia, Sauder School of Business.
  • Spiliotopoulos, V. et al. (2010). Educational Technology Review: A first look at the UVic Snapshot. University of Victoria, Learning and Teaching Centre.

Recent administrative positions

  • Coordinator, French specialization, Bachelor of Education program – UBC (2019-2021)
  • Director, Centre for English Language Learning Teaching and Research, SFU (2016-2019)
  • Coordinator, Graduate Diploma in Advanced Professional Studies in Education, SFU (2013 – 2015)