University of California, Riverside

Faculty Profile System

Michelle Back

Michelle Back

Visiting Assistant Professor

Department of Hispanic Studies


  • University of Wisconsin-Madison, Ph.D. in Second Language Acquisition.
    Doctoral Dissertation: We Did the Wrong Dance: Ecuadorian Musicians Negotiating Language and Identity in a Transnational Community (2009).
    Directed by Prof. Richard F. Young.
  • University of California, Berkeley, M.A. in Hispanic Languages and Literatures (1995).
  • University of Minnesota, Twin Cities, B.A. in Spanish (1992).


Michele Back’s research focuses on identity, community and maintenance of indigenous languages among multilingual speakers. Her dissertation examined a group of Andean folkloric musicians and the role that their transnational experiences played in maintaining their native language, Ecuadorian Quichua. Currently she is investigating ideologies of Quechua and Spanish in Peru through an analysis of blogs and radio call-in shows, as well as the use and maintenance of Peruvian Quechua in customer service phone transactions. Her other research interests include identity and language acquisition in study abroad settings and reasons for taking less commonly taught languages. She teaches Spanish linguistics and Portuguese for Spanish speakers.


More Information 

General Campus Information

University of California, Riverside
900 University Ave.
Riverside, CA 92521
Tel: (951) 827-1012

Department Information

Department of Hispanic Studies
2401 HMNSS Building

Tel: (951) 827-3746
Fax: (951) 827-2294