Research Projects

I’m generally interested in speech perception and psycholinguistics. Currently, I’m thinking about how prediction and phonotactic constraints interact with speech perception and (sometimes) produce illusions.

Some of my past work is described in more detail below.

SANs as Syntactic Predictions

Sustained anterior negatives have been reported for long distance dependencies and have been interpreted as showing the cost of maintaining syntactic predictions. This study uses subordination and transitivity to investigate whether SANs also occur other previously uninvestigated dependencies, and what this tells us about the neural and cognitive processes underlying sentence processing. With Ellen Lau and Aura Heredia Cruz, to be presented at CUNY 2019.

Production of ambiguous and neutralized segments

Ambiguous flaps: My bachelor’s thesis investigated the behavior of flaps in Michigan English using the duration and formant trajectory of the preceding vowel. In this variety of English, /t/ and /d/ becomes flaps in certain environments: write (pronounced with a [t]) becomes writer (with a [flap]). However, there are some surface flaps that are not clearly allophones of either /d/ or /t/, for example, spider, cider, water, Adam, etc. Results showed that speakers treat the ambiguous flap as something in between a flapped /t/ and a flapped /d/ — an unexpected result. With Karthik Durvasula, presented at AMP 2017.

Gender bias in the field of linguistics

Bias in Linguistics: This project investigates the leaky pipeline for women in the field of linguistics. The results and data are available on the website. Collaborations are currently underway with many grad students at Maryland and with other groups throughout the field; more information can be found on the website. With Karthik Durvasula and Adam Liter, presented at LSA 2019.

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