Jenna A. Altherr Flores, Ph.D.

Associate Director of Awards and Student Recognition, Office of Undergraduate Fellowships International Education Week Coordinator
Jenna Altherr Flores
she, her, hers


Jenna A. Altherr Flores is a teaching assistant professor in the department of English. Her research concerns how adults with emerging literacy learn English as an additional language and how they make meaning through print and multimodal texts. Jenna has worked internationally as a field archaeologist in Athens, Greece and as an English as a Second Language (ESL) and literacy teacher trainer in rural Belize with the U.S. Peace Corps.

In addition to her experience supporting fellowship applications, coordinating fellowship programs and community engagement at the University of Arizona, and teaching at the University of Nevada, Reno, she has taught high school Latin, taught ESL and literacy in adult education, and collaborated with students from refugee backgrounds on English and literacy curriculum development. Jenna chaired the Refugee Concerns Interest Section of TESOL International, and served on the inaugural board of directors for the Literacy Education and Second Language Learning for Adults (LESLLA) international professional organization.

She is currently coordinating the University of Nevada, Reno's International Education Week and is developing opportunities for acknowledging student success as part of the Office of Undergraduate Fellowships.

Research interests

  • Social semiotics
  • Multimodality
  • Assessment
  • Literacy
  • Adult L2 learners with emerging literacy
  • Refugee-background adult L2 learners
  • Community engagement
  • Teacher training

Selected publications

  • Altherr Flores, J. A. (2021). The interplay of text and image on the meaning-making processes of adult L2 learners with emerging literacy: Implications for test design and evaluation frameworks. In B. Deygers (Ed.), Language testing for low-literate learners [Special Issue]. Language Assessment Quarterly: An International Journal.
  • Altherr Flores, J. A., & Pettitt, N. (2021). Review of Teaching adult immigrants with limited formal education: Theory, research, and practice, edited by Joy Kreeft Peyton and Martha Young-Scholten. Language Issues, 31(2), 142¬–147.
  • Altherr Flores, J. A. (2021). Assessing refugee-background adult second language learners with emerging literacy: How a social semiotic analysis reveals hidden assumptions of test design. In D. S. Warriner (Ed.), Refugee education across the lifespan: Mapping experiences of language learning and use (pp. 139–159). Educational Linguistics, vol. 50. Springer.
  • Altherr Flores, J. A. (2021). The semiotics of writing: How adult L2 learners with emergent literacy make meaning in assessment texts through writing. In N. Pettitt, L. Gonzalves, E. Tarone, & T. Wall (Eds.), Adult L2 writers with emergent literacy: Theoretical and pedagogical considerations [Special Issue]. Journal of Second Language Writing, 51.
  • Altherr Flores, J. A., Hou, D., & Diao, W. (2020). Lingua francas beyond English: Multilingual repertoires among immigrants in a southwestern U.S. border town. International Journal of Multilingualism, 17(2), 107–133.
  • Altherr Flores, J. A. (2019). Messages and meaning in perceived and lived spaces: Semiosis, institutions, and landscapes. In A. Cirocki & R. Farrelly (Eds.), Current perspectives on teaching English to refugee-background students [Special Issue]. European Journal of Applied Linguistics and TEFL, 8(1), 175–202.
  • Altherr Flores, J. A., Fogel, L., Shufflebarger Snell, A. M., & Van Roekel, K. (2019). Teaching and tutoring adult emergent readers with refugee backgrounds: Implementing a training program for community volunteers. In J. Sacklin & D. McParland (Eds.), Literacy Education and Second Language Learning for Adults (LESLLA): Proceedings of the 13th Annual Symposium. (pp. 1–18). LESLLA.
  • Altherr Flores, J. A. (2018). Decoding citizenship in USCIS naturalization test materials: A critical social semiotic analysis. Critical Multilingualism Studies, 6(1), 22–50.
  • Altherr Flores, J. A. (2017). Social semiotics and multimodal assessment of L2 adult emergent readers from refugee backgrounds. In M. SosiƄski (Ed.), Alfabetización y aprendizaje de idiomas por adultos: Investigación, política educativa y práctica docente/Literacy education and second language learning by adults (LESLLA): Research, policy and practice. (pp. 9–31). Universidad de Granada.

Courses taught

  • ENG 100I - Composition Intensive
  • ENG 114 - Composition for Multilingual Students
  • ENG 102 - Second-Semester Composition
  • ENG 101 - First Semester Composition
  • ENG 113 - Composition for Multilingual Students
  • ENG 281 - Introduction to Language and Linguistics


  • Ph.D., Second Language Acquisition and Teaching, University of Arizona, 2020
  • M.A., English Language and Linguistics, University of Arizona
  • M.A., Classical Languages and Classical Archaeology, Florida State University
  • B.A., Anthropology and Sociology; Greek and Roman Studies, Rhodes College