American University of Sharjah

Department of Writing Studies

Department of writing studies

Dr. Roger Charles Nunn

Professor & Head of the Department of Writing Studies

PhD in TEFL, University of Reading, UK

Roger Nunn has taught in a variety of international locations, including Ethiopia, Japan, the UK and Germany. His research interests include developing holistic academic literacy, applying the philosophy of language to learning, intercultural communication, non-blind journal review processes and the cultural analysis of literary texts. He is Chief Editor of the Asian ESP Journal and a founding member of English Scholars Beyond Borders. He enjoys presenting and publishing in as broad a variety of international locations as possible.

Dr. Daniel Fredrick


Assistant Professor and Interim Department Head

PhD in Rhetoric and Composition, Texas Christian University, USA

Daniel R. Fredrick has taught a wide-range of writing and speaking courses at the university level. He has published articles about Cicero, classical rhetoric, and the teaching of composition, and has presented at many international conferences.

Alaanoud Abusalim


Senior Instructor

Master of Arts in Rhetoric and Composition, Southern Illinois University, USA

Alaanoud Abusalim taught rhetoric and composition at Southern Illinois University, and she also taught rhetoric in state-funded programs for inner-city students in Illinois. Later, she taught composition at Abu Dhabi University. Her areas of interest include teaching ideology, teaching excellence, and the connection between rhetoric and identity, especially in relation to L2 writing in the Middle East.

Neslihan Bilikozen


Assistant Professor

Master of Arts in English Language Education, Bogazici University, Turkey

During her graduate studies, Neslihan Bilikozen worked as a research assistant at Bogazici University and Georgia State University, Atlanta, USA. Prior to her career at AUS, she taught academic writing courses at Yeditepe University, Istanbul. Currently, she is a doctoral candidate at the University of Exeter, UK, working on her doctoral research on academic literacy development. Her current research interests include language and identity, culture and curriculum, and critical issues in second language writing.

Laurence Craven

Laurence craven


Master of Arts in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages, Oxford Brookes University, UK

Prior to joining AUS, Laurence Craven taught academic writing, reading and presentations in Japan and Spain. His research interests include teaching speaking and writing and integrating technology into ESL classrooms and Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL).

Richard Mark Brown



Richard Mark Brown earned a of Master of Education in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) from the University of British Columbia, Canada. He has taught English as a second or foreign language at the middle/high school and university level in Canada, Brunei, South Korea, and the UAE for 25 years at such institutions as the University of British Columbia and Korea National University. His areas of research and teaching interest are Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL), blended learning and independent study.

Brad Curabba

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Master of Arts in Teaching, School of International Training, USA

Brad Curabba has taught English as a Foreign Language courses, TESOL training courses, and academic writing courses for over 15 years. Prior to teaching at AUS, Curabba taught at UAE University in Al Ain, UAE, Westchester Community College in New York, and Kanda University of International Studies in Chiba, Japan. His teaching and research interests include experiential and task-based learning and integration of technology in the classroom.

Greg Duran

Greg Duran


Master of Arts in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages, Portland State University, USA

Greg Duran has taught courses in academic writing and EFL/ESL in the USA, Korea, Africa, Turkey and Oman, and has given seminars on reporting and ethics to West African journalists. In addition to teaching, he has worked as a professional journalist in the roles of copy editor, feature writer and translator for numerous organizations and publications on three continents. Duran's research interests include skills development and retention in second-language learners, student-led learning, student autonomy and its application to process-based writing, sociolinguistics, linguistic pragmatics and minority languages/border cultures.

Dr. Maria Eleftheriou


Assistant Professor

Doctorate of Education, University of Leicester, UK

Maria Eleftheriou has taught writing and literature courses to a wide range of students from many cultural backgrounds. In addition to directing the AUS Writing Center, she continues to research the relevance of established writing center models in contemporary Middle-Eastern contexts. Her aim is to explore the possibility of developing models that take into account the diversity of student populations who are proficient with contemporary media.

Reem El Saadi

Reem El Saadi


Master of Arts in English Literature and Issues in Modern Culture, University College London

Reem El Saadi has taught composition, film studies and photography theory at institutions such as the American University of Beirut, the Lebanese American University, Murdoch University and the American University in Dubai. Her areas of research interest are postmodern literature, pop culture and film as text.

Dr. Bruce Gatenby


Assistant Professor

PhD in English, University of Arizona, Tucson, USA

Bruce Gatenby has taught at institutions such as Claremont McKenna College, Idaho State University, and the American University of Rome. He has also worked as an ESL teacher, a journalist, a screenwriter, and a corporate communications consultant in Germany, France and Italy. Dr. Gatenby has also received two National Endowment for the Humanities fellowships in philosophy.

Dr. Neena Gandhi


Assistant Professor

PhD in English, Delhi University, India

Neena Gandhi's area of research is postcolonial literature. She has published research articles on postcolonial literature in international journals and has recently organized a seminar, The Twilight Zone in the Colonial and Postcolonial World, at Harvard University. Her teaching areas include writing, contemporary world literature, classical literature, modern British fiction, and the novel in 19th century England. She taught at Delhi University for 14 years before she joined American University of Sharjah in 2002.

Christopher Horger


Senior Instructor

Master of Arts in Rhetoric, University of Arizona, USA

Christopher Horger received has been teaching academic writing at American universities for 23 years, 16 of them in the Arab world. His research interests include rhetoric and composition theory, applied linguistics and cross-cultural communications. Since 2005 he has been Editor-in-Chief of the AUS Freshman Anthology, a collection of the best student essays from Writing 101 and 102, and which also is used as a textbook in freshman writing courses. An avid Phillies fan, he also enjoys watching his son pitch no-hitters in the Dubai Little League.

Randa Fayez Bou-Mehdi

Randa Fayez Bou-Mehdi


Master of Arts in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages, American University of Sharjah

Prior to joining AUS, Randa Bou-Mehdi taught English language and composition at the middle and high school level in the UAE. Her interests include teaching speaking and writing, integrating technology into ESL classrooms, and engaging students in critical pedagogy.

Susan Munday


Assistant Professor

MPhil in English, University of Glasgow, UK

Susan Munday has been teaching English and business at tertiary institutions in the UAE for 15 years. Her research interests include economics of education, cultural studies as well as international and corporate communication. She is an EdD candidate at the University of Bath, UK.

Özgür Parlak

Ozgur parlak


Master of Arts in TESL, Northern Arizona University, USA

Özgür Parlak has taught EFL courses in Thailand and academic writing courses in the USA, Qatar and the UAE. Currently, he is working on his PhD in Linguistics through Lancaster University on the topic of interaction and acquisition of phonology. When he has free time, he enjoys sailing and doing travel photography.

Zofia Reid


Senior Instructor

Master of Arts in English, University of South Africa

Zofia Tatiana Reid has taught in rhetoric and composition departments for over eight years at the American University in Dubai and AUS. Her areas of research and teaching interest are sociolinguistics, pragmatics, education, formative instruction, and rhetoric and composition. Prior to her academic career, she worked as a researcher/writer/editor for a market research company.

Dr. Lynne Ronesi


Assistant Professor

PhD in Curriculum and Instruction in Second Language Learning, University of Connecticut, USA

Throughout her career, Lynne Ronesi has been involved primarily in the teaching of academic writing; she has also trained undergraduate peer writing tutors and directed various peer tutoring programs, including a writing center, at universities in the USA, Morocco and in the UAE. Her research revolves around language, culture, identity and education.

Sana Sayed


Senior Instructor

Master of Arts in English, California State University, Fullerton, USA

Sana Sayed taught in English departments in Orange and Los Angeles counties of California for more than four years before joining AUS. Her areas of research interest are Victorian literature, gender and identity, and theories of assessment and accountability in teaching composition. Her areas of teaching interest are composition, rhetoric and literature. Prior to teaching at the post-secondary level, she worked for the University of California, the Irvine Police Department, and as a high school English teacher.

Dr. Aisha Sayidina


Assistant Professor

PhD in Applied Linguistics, University of Exeter, UK

Aisha Sayidina is an applied linguist with teaching specialty and research interests in discourse analysis, contrastive rhetoric, and academic writing and literacy. She published the results of her empirical research in peer reviewed journals investigating the impact of L1 literacy practices on subsequent literacies. Her paper “Transfer of L1 Cohesive Devices and Transition Words into L2 Academic Texts: The Case of Arab Students” offers insights into the rhetorical strategies preferred by Arabic speakers. She is currently researching Chinese students’ use of attribution in academic texts. Prior to joining AUS, Dr. Sayidina was teaching at George Washington University, Washington, DC, USA.

Lelania Sperrazza


Senior Instructor 

Master of Arts in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages, City University of New York, USA

Lelania Sperrazza has taught TESOL and composition for the US Department of State at the University of Aden in Yemen and Al Azhar University in Egypt. She has also taught rhetoric at the American University in Cairo. Her areas of interest are language and identity, focusing specifically on the role of English in the Middle East. Currently, she is working on her doctorate in English at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, USA.

Barbara Elizabeth Stewart

Barbara Elizabeth Stewart


Master of Science in Journalism, Columbia University, USA

Barbara Elizabeth Stewart worked in newspaper and magazine journalism for some 20 years, and was a staff reporter on the metropolitan section of The New York Times for 10 years. She has written several other publications, including The Washington Post, the Carnegie Corporation, the Telegraph and the Guardian. She subsequently earned a Cambridge University Certificate of Language Teaching to Adults, and taught academic writing at The City University of New York, Stevens Institute of Technology in New Jersey, and New York University. She also taught English to at Dzongsar Institute, a Buddhist monastic university; and journalism at the Royal University of Bhutan. She has a particular interest in recording the life stories and oral history of people in the Himalayas.

Gregory VanderPyl

Gregory Vanderpyl


MA TESOL, School of International Training Graduate Institute, USA

Gregory VanderPyl earned an MA in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages from the School of International Training Graduate Institute (SIT), Brattleboro, Vermont, USA. He has taught for over 15 years in English language and writing departments in Indonesia, Laos, Korea, Singapore, Myanmar and Saudi Arabia. His main area of interest is creative writing. Prior to his academic career, he worked as a visual artist and as a television, film, theater and online producer, director, writer, technician, and actor in New York, Hollywood, and Europe.

Christopher Weagle


Master of Art in English Literature and Creative Writing, University of New Brunswick, Canada

Christopher Weagle has been a university teacher for over 13 years, and he has worked at South Korean institutions such as Ewha Womans University, Pusan National University and Yonsei University. He has published poetry in Canadian journals and in an anthology, and he is currently working a volume of poetry.

Ms. Marwa Mehio


MA in English Literature from the American University of Beirut, Lebanon

Marwa received her BA and MA degrees in English Literature from the American University of Beirut. Her studies focused on Arab American and 20th Century American Literature and culminated in a thesis entitled “Randall Jarrell’s Jungian Lost World: Materialism and the Collective Unconscious. She worked for several years at Writing Centers both as a tutor and senior tutor, aiding students in developing their writing and helping in promoting writing culture at the university. Following her graduation, she began teaching academic and creative writing courses in higher education, working with program development and assessment, and pursuing her own research in second-language teaching and fiction writing.