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Peyman Nojoumian

Assistant Professor (Teaching) of Persian

Contact Information
Phone: (213) 740-2310
Office: THH 449

Persian @ USC
Persian Learners' Dictionary

Biographical Sketch

Peyman Nojoumian is currently an Assistant Professor (Teaching) of Persian in the Middle East Studies Program at University of Southern California. He got his Ph.D. in Linguistics from the University of Ottawa, Canada and two masters; one in Artificial Intelligence, Speech & Language Technology from K.U.Leuven, Belgium and one in Teaching Persian as a Foreign Language from Allameh Tabataba’i University, Tehran. He is experienced in developing instructional materials and e-learning technology for world languages. His four volume Persian textbook is under publisher's revievew. Dr. Nojoumian has recently developed a free smartphone App called Persian Learner’s Dictionary for elementary Persian learners. The online dictionary features 5000 basic vocabulary items, pictures, phonetic transcriptions, pronunciations, part of speeches, and authentic examples in written and spoken Persian styles. Dr. Nojoumian is a certified ACTFL OPI and WPT tester, mentor and trainer of the Persian language and is registered with the Language Testing International.



Ph.D. Linguistics, University of Ottawa, 7/2011
M.S. Speech and Language Technology, KULeuven, 2002
M.A. Teaching Persian as a Foreign Language, Allameh Tabatabai, 1997

Academic Appointment, Affiliation, and Employment History

Assistant Professor (Teaching) of Persian, University of Southern California, 2011-  
Associate Director, Summer Institute for the Languages of the Muslim World (SILMW), Spring 2011   
Persian Lecturer & Coordinator, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2008-2011  
Persian Lecturer, University of Maryland, 2006-2008  

Description of Research

Summary Statement of Research Interests

My research interest covers two broader areas of language pedagogy and linguistics. In the former, it focuses on the development of instructional materials for foreign or second language. I employ a communicative task-based language teaching approach in developing instructional materials and utilize e-learning technology for its implementation. I also develop Language for Specific Purposes (LSP) content-based materials to teach Persian modern and classic literature, Iranian economy, politics, international relations, religions, media and cinema. In the latter, I study the processing of language orthography especially morphological analysis and automatic diacritization of languages with ambiguous scripts (discovering and inserting absent vowels in orthography). In my Ph.D. thesis, I developed an automatic diacritizer for the Persian orthography. This application was able to diacritize and tag a Persian text corpus to be used for developing reading and spelling apps for Persian language learners. I am also interested and capable of developing research in the area of Persian Studies & Iranian Studies.

Research Keywords

Persian, Persian Literature, Computational Linguistics, Teaching Persian as a Foreign Language, Task-based Language Teaching, Heritage and Non-heritage Language Learning, Iranian Studies

Research Specialties

Teaching Persian Language and Culture, Corpus Linguistics, Iranian Studies, Classic and Modern Persian Literature

Funded Research

Contracts and Grants Awarded

Business Persian for Intermediate Learners (CIBER), Peyman Nojoumian, $2,500, Spring 2011   
CSAMES on-line Persian (CSAMES), Peyman Nojoumian, $5,000, Fall 2010   

USC Funding

Faculty Development Grant. Instructional Materials Development: Instructional Materials Development based on Task-based Language Teaching principles., $1,500, 2014-2015   
Center for Scholary Technology. Multimedia Course Development: Developed multimedia resources and assignments for a CST project., $5,000, 2013-2014   

Conferences and Other Presentations

Conference Presentations

"Developing Online Narration & Role-Play Tasks Based on TBLT: A Hands-on Example from Persian", American Association of Teachers of Persian, MESA Conference, Talk/Oral Presentation, Washington DC, Invited, Fall 2014   
"Instructional Materials Development based on Task-based Language Teaching Principles for Persian", 10th Biennial Iranian Studies Conference, International Society for Iranian Studies, Talk/Oral Presentation, Montreal, Canada, Invited, Fall 2014   
"Business Language Course Development based on Task-based Language Teaching Principles for Less Commonly Taught Languages", CIBER Business Language Conference, Talk/Oral Presentation, Abstract, University of Indiana, Bloomington, CIBER, Invited, Spring 2013   
"Instructional Material Development based on Principles of TBLT", Keynote Lecture, Ghazvin International University, Invited, Fall 2011   
"Morphological Priming of Multi-morphemic Persian Words in Mental Lexicon", Workshop on Computer and Persian Language, Talk/Oral Presentation, Paper, Tehran University, Invited, Spring 2006   
"Modeling Persian Language Syntax and Morphology in LingBench IDE", The 4th European Speech and Language Technology Conference, Talk/Oral Presentation, Abstract, Catalonia Polytechnic University, Invited, Spring 2003   

Other Presentations

"Teaching Persian in the 21st Century", Two-day Workshop for Persian Teachers, USC, Farhang Foundation & PVPHF, Los Angeles, 2015-2016   
"Rapid Online Assignment Development (ROAD)", USC Center for Teaching Excellence, USC, Los Angeles, Fall 2014   
"Teaching Persian to Third Generation of Iranian Heritage Speakers & Retaining Persian in First Generation of Iranians in Diaspora", Academy of Persian Physicians Cultural Event, APP, Los Angeles, Spring 2014   
"Creative Classroom Strategies, Tools from Language Instruction", Center for Scholarly Technologies, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, Spring 2013   
"The Evolution of the Persian Language", Iranian Cultural Talk, Persian Academic & Cultural Student Association (PACSA) , USC - TTC 450, Spring 2012   

Other Research

Developing standards to identify level-appropriate reading materials, 2014-  
Developed language corpora of language learners writing samples, 2014-2015   


Conference Proceeding

Nojoumian, P., Shabani Jadidi, P., Tangestanifar, A. (2006). Morphological Priming of Multi-morphemic Persian Words in Mental Lexicon. pp. 28-38. Tehran University Press. Proceedings of the 2nd Workshop on Computer and Persian Language.

Research Report

Nojoumian, P. Processing Phonological and Semantic Ambiguity, Disambiguation of Heterophonic & Homophonic Homographs in Persian Using Semantic Priming. Linguistics Department.

Teaching Innovations and Multimedia Teaching

Persian Elementary Learner's App, 2014-  
Developed online assignments using PIXTON technology, 2013-  

Honors and Awards

Houtan Foundation Award, 2001-2002   

Service to the University


Member, Dornsife Faculty Committe, Spring 2015   
Member, USC Iranian Studies Initiative Conference Committee, Spring 2015   
Member, MESP Chair Search Committee, Fall 2013   
Member, Arabic Faculty Search Committee, 2012-2013   
Member, Iranian Studies Faculty Search Committee, Spring 2012   
Member, Faculty Performance Evaluation, USC Dornsife, Fall 2011   

Service to the Profession

Professional Memberships

American Association of Teachers of Persian, 2014-  
ACTFL: Persian OPI and WPT Certified, 2013-  
International Society for Iranian Studies, 2013-  
Association of Professors & Scholars of Iranian Heritage, 2012-  

Reviewer for Publication

International Journal of Iranian Studies, Routledge, Reviewer, 2014-  
International Journal of Computational Linguistics and Applications, Elsevier, Paper reviewer for Vol 1, No. 1-2, 2010-2011   
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