Staff Photo

Aija Saario Pocock, PhD

Clinical Assistant Professor, ESL Education
Division of Education
CC Room 155F

PHONE: 812.348.7347
FAX: 812.348.7338

Biographical Statement

Aija started her teaching career at the University of Jyväskylä in her home country of Finland. After moving to the United States, she taught English composition and linguistics, British and American literature, and English as a second language at universities in Texas and Georgia until 2004,when she transitioned into Teacher Education as a Coordinator of the ESL dual licensure program at IUPUC. Her current professional foci include program development, accreditation,  and incorporating ESL education into mainstream teacher education.


  • PhD, English (British and American Literature, Ball State University, Muncie, IN (1984)
    • Cognates:  Teaching English as a Second Language, Speech Communication
    • Dissertation title:  Pragmatic Constraints on Case and Word Order in Finnish: Implications for Definiteness
  • M.A., Speech Communication, Ball State University, Muncie, IN (1980)
  • M.A., English Philology, University of Jyväskylä, Finland (1978)
    • Concentration Area: Applied Linguistics
    • Minors:  Phonetics, Speech Communication
  • B.A., English Philology, University of Jyväskylä, Finland (1977)
    • Concentration Area: Teaching English as a Foreign Language
    • Minors:  Swedish, Phonetics

Professional Activities

  • Indiana University Purdue University Columbus
    • Clinical Assistant Professor of ESL Education (2006-present)
    • Coordinatorof the ESL Dual Licensing program (2006-present)
  • Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis
    • Adjunct Instructor (2003-2004)
  • Georgia Perimeter College, Atlanta, Georgia
    • Associate Professor of English and English as a Second Language (1995-2002)
  • Odessa College, Odessa, Texas
    • Professor of English (1992-1995)
    • Associate Professor of English (1989-1992)
  • North Harris County College, Houston, Texas
    • Adjunct Instructor of English (1986-1989)
  • Rice University, Houston, Texas
    • Adjunct Instructor of ESL (fall 1985)
  • Ball State University, Muncie, Indiana
    • Adjunct Instructor of English (1982-1984)
    • Doctoral Teaching Fellow in English (1979-1982)
    • Graduate Teaching Assistant, Speech Communication (1978-1979)
  • University of Jyvaskyla, Finland
    • Adjunct Instructor of Speech Communication (1977-1978)
    • Research Assistant (1976-1978)

Courses Taught

  • EDUC-E 201: Multicultural Education and Global Awareness
  • EDUC-L 436: Methods and Materials for Teaching ESL
  • EDUC-L 441: Bilingual Education-Introduction
  • EDUC-L 442: Teaching English Language Learners: Bilingual/ENL
  • ENG-G 205: Introduction to the English Language

Administrative & Service Responsibilities

  • Coordinator, ESL Dual Licensure Program, Division of Education, IUPUC (2006-present)
  • Member, Faculty Senate (2012-present)
  • Member, IUPUC Diversity Cabinet (2007-present)
  • Member, Assurance of Learning Committee for Undergraduate Student Learning Outcomes (2011-present)
  • Member, Search and Screen Committee for the Assistant Dean of Academic Affairs Position (2011)
  • Member, Search and Screen Committee for Division Head of Education (2011)
  • Chair, IUPUC Faculty Awards Committee (2010)
  • TESOL/NCATE Program Reviewer for English as a Second Language Teacher Education Programs (2010)
  • Chair, IUPUC Division of Education Peer Review Committee (2010-2012)
  • Chair, Search and Screen Committee, tenure-track position in Literacy and ESL Education (2010)
  • Member, Interdisciplinary Task Force at IUPUI—“Project TARGETt: Transformative and Renewing Growth for Educators and Teachers of Teachers”to reform teacher education to better prepare teachers to meet the needs of linguistically, culturally, socio-economically, and geographically diverse student populations (2010)
  • Member, NCATE Accreditation Team in the Division of Education at IUPUC (2009)
    • Responsible for Standard 4: Diversity, NCATE Accreditation Unit Review
  • Member, Search Screen Committee, tenure-track position in Special Education (2009)
  • Invited membership, Selection committee for the TEA (Teaching Excellence and Achievement) Program, sponsored by The International Research and Exchange Board, in partnership with the U.S. Department of State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (2009)
  • Prepared the NCATE/TESOL Special Program Accreditation Report for the NCATE/ TESOL for the English as a Second Language Dual Licensing Program (2008)
  • IUPUC Education Division Representative to the IU SOE Education Council (2007-2012)
  • Member, IUPUC Campus Grievance Committee (2007-2009)
  • Member, IUPUC Faculty Awards Committee (2006, 2009)

Research Activities

  • Teacher Education in English as a Second Language
  • Program accreditation
  • Program and course development
  • Cultural and linguistic diversity

Awards & Activities

  • Received a grant from Education Blueprints Agency to present at the International SMEC Conference in Dublin, Ireland (2012)
  • Received the Indiana University Trustees Teaching Award (2010)
  • Received IUPUC Outstanding Full-Time Faculty Teaching Award (2008)


Selected Publications

  • Pocock, A. (2012). Multicultural Text Sets' alignment with TESOL standards. Reported in Staehr Fenner, D. & Kuhlman, N. (Eds.), Preparing effective teachers of English Language Learners: Practical Applications for the TESOL P-12 Professional Standards (pp. 91-92). Alexandria, VA: TESOL International Association.
  • Teemant, A., Upton, T., Berghoff, B., Pocock, A., Seybold., & Adams, S. (2008). Project TARGETt:  Transformative and renewing growth for educators and teachers of teachers. Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis, IN.  Working Paper.
  • Baird, K., Pocock, A., Wakhungu, H. & Winikates, D.  (2007).  An interdisciplinary, inquiry-based, pre-service teacher preparation program: Using the Moon as an integrating theme. The Hoosier Science Teacher.
  • Baird, K., Pocock, A., Wakhungu, H. & Winikates, D. (2007).  Pre-service elementary educators engage in inquiry-based science, literacy, and numeracy through thematic integrated teacher preparation program focused on the Moon. Conference Proceedings from the Association of Science Teacher Educators' 2007 International Convention.

Civic Engagement

  • Participated in planning of the first MLK Day Celebration (2012)
    • Facilitated a Diversity Circle with participants from the community.
  • Provided a professional development session for Bartholomew Consolidated School Corporation ESL teachers, teacher aides, and parent liaisons (2012)
  • Volunteer for the Columbus Scottish Festival (2010-present)