John T Means

Picture of J. Thomas    Means

Associate Professor
Modern Languages


Office: S-601V

Office Hours: Thursday 11:00-12:00; Friday 1:00-3:00

Phone: +1 (212) 220-8000;ext=5275

Professor J. Thomas Means, Modern Languages Department, BMCC/CUNY, is an expert in foreign language learning and teaching.

He holds a Ph.D. in Italian and Second Language Acquisition from Rutgers and he has published widely in the field of foreign language pedagogy. He is trilingual (English, Italian, Spanish) and also has basic competency in French and German. His research and practice focus on how languages are best learned and maintained, including the role of technology in language learning and teaching.


Teacher Education, Second-Language Acquisition, Italian, Applied Linguistics


  • B.A. Rutgers College, Rutgers University, English; Italian,1997
  • M.A. Rutgers University, Italian Literature,1999
  • Ph.D. Rutgers University, Italian and Second Language Acquisition,2006

Courses Taught

Research and Projects

  • Transforming a grammar-oriented syllabus of Italian into a task-based syllabus
  • Task-based teaching modules for elementary through intermediate Italian



Honors, Awards and Affiliations

  • Shortlisted, 2007, ACTFL-MLJ Emma Marie Birkmaier Award for Doctoral Dissertation Research in Foreign Language Education
    The Emma Marie Birkmaier Award was established in 1980 to recognize an author of doctoral dissertation research in foreign language education that contributes significantly to the advancement of the profession. 
  • SCOLA, National Foreign Language Teacher of the Year, 2004
    SCOLA is a non-profit educational organization. SCOLA receives and re-transmits foreign TV programming from around the world and provides other foreign language resources, language lessons, and learning material on its website.
  • Shortlisted, 2008, Cambridge University Press Christopher Brumfit Ph.D./Ed.D. Thesis Award
    To recognize doctoral thesis research that makes a significant and original contribution to the field of Second Language Acquisition and/or foreign/second language learning and teaching.

Additional Information

I have always been passionate about languages, travel, and teaching. I hope to share some of this excitement with my students, in the hopes of pushing them to new experiences and understandings.