Jeffrey Steele

Associate Professor, French Studies
Language Studies

Graduate appointment: Graduate French Program

Born and raised in Winnipeg, Jeffrey has had a passion for language – French, in particular – since a very young age. Trained as a formal linguist with a special interest in sound structure, his research investigates both the ways in which people acquire second languages as well as various aspects of the French sound system. He is also a musician and holds two performer’s diplomas (Associate of the Royal Conservatory of Music, Toronto; Premier prix, Conservatoire international de musique, Paris).

Current Courses

  • FRE180 (French Language Skills and Learning Strategies for University Study)
  • FRE389 (Individual Differences in Second Language Acquisition)
  • FRE487 (Advanced Topics in Experimental French Linguistics)

Graduate Course

  • FRE1103 (Séminaire de linguistique I : Phonétique et phonologie)


  • PhD, Linguistics, McGill University
  • MA, French Linguistics, Queen’s University
  • BA Hons, French, University of Manitoba

Areas of Teaching and Research Interests

  • Second language acquisition
  • Laboratory phonology
  • Language assessment
  • Evidence-based pedagogy
  • Pronunciation instruction
  • Bilingual literacy

Selected Publications


  • Colantoni, L., Steele, J., & Escudero, P. (2015). Second Language Speech: Theory & Practice. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Articles & Book Chapters

  • Steele, J. (To appear). Acquisition of segmental phonology in adult bilingualism. In M. Amengual (Ed.), The Cambridge Handbook of Bilingual Phonetics and Phonology. Cambridge University Press.
  • Patience, M., & Steele, J. (2022). Relative difficulty in the acquisition of the phonetic parameters of obstruent coda voicing: Evidence from Mandarin-speaking learners of French. Language & Speech. 238309221114143–238309221114143. https://doi.org/10.1177/00238309221114143
  • Krenca, K., Segers, P. C. J., Verhoeven, L. T. W., Steele, J., Shakory, S., & Chen, X. (2022). Lexical restructuring stimulates phonological awareness among emerging English-French bilingual children’s literacy. Journal of Child Language, 1–25. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0305000922000083


Selected Grants, Fellowships and Awards

  • SSHRC Insight Development Grant, Co-investigator, 2022–2027, Reading Comprehension among Majority and Minority Language Children in French Immersion: The Contribution of Oral Language Skills and Reading Strategies