Ana Luisa Gediel, Ph.D., was born in the countryside in the south of Brazil, in South America. Ana completed her bachelor's degree and master's program in Brazil at the Federal University of Santa Maria, in the state of RS. She continued her academic journey with a doctoral program in Social Anthropology at the University of Rio Grande do Sul in the state of RS. In 2008, she gained valuable experience in the U.S. by conducting research in the field of Linguistic Anthropology at the University of Texas (UT) in Austin, TX. Upon returning to Brazil, Ana Gediel became a full professor at the Federal University of Viçosa in the Department of Languages, where she actively participated in both undergraduate and graduate programs. In 2016, she returned to the U.S. to pursue a postdoctoral research program at the Center for Language Interaction and Culture within the Department of Linguistic Anthropology at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), in Los Angeles, CA.
The academic pathway was always encouraged by her parents and grandmother, who considered education as crucial and also provided to her multicultural experiences. During her childhood, Ana lived with her family very close to Uruguay and Argentina, where she had the opportunity to experience cross-cultural and linguistic diversity. She learned Spanish through multicultural interactions. At the same time, she began studying English and later pursued a bachelor's degree in Special Education, where she became a learner of Sign Language. During her masters’ degree she initiated French to continue her academic studies.
Ana was influenced by her cross-cultural background and language experiences throughout her journey, which had an impact on her classroom activities and research interests. Her research interests are centered around qualitative approaches related to Deaf people, Sign Language, teacher training, and teaching strategies for inclusion. Ana’s goal as a researcher and educator has been to promote inclusion practices and strategies, to enhance educational accessibility within the context of public schools.
Ana's recent projects include developing and researching strategies through pedagogical software to provide accessibility for students who are deaf at different levels of education. Ana has been coordinating an interdisciplinary team to develop an online Brazilian Sign Language dictionary (https://sistemas.cead.ufv.br/capes/dicionario/). She also recently conducted a multi-case study on inclusive practices and approaches in different contexts related to the inclusion of those who are deaf in Zona da Mata Mineira, Noroeste Fluminense, and Recôncavo da Bahia, Brazil.
Ana Gediel is passionate about teaching and is very excited with the opportunity to teach and research at Erikson Institute. She is teaching in the online ECE Program and looks forward to supporting equity, inclusion, and social justice as an educator in her classes.