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Visiting Scholars


Dr. Darcie Blainey
PhD, Tulane University, 2013

Explores effects of language contact on North American varieties of French, with a particular interest in sociolinguistics, phonetics and phonology. Postdoctoral research examines schwa use in Louisiana, Ontario, Québec and New Brunswick French.
Caichen Guo
MA Student, Institute of Linguistics and Applied Linguistics
Peking University, China

Prof. Dr. Klaus von Heusinger
Professor, Institute for German Language and Literature
Director, Collaborative Research Center for Prominence in Language
University of Cologne, Germany

Dr. von Heusinger received his PhD on the semantics of noun phrases and his Habilitation on intonation and information structure from the University of Konstanz. He was Professor of Linguistics in Stuttgart, and since 2012, Professor of Linguistics in Cologne. From 2017, he is also the director of the Collaborative Research Center for Prominence in Language. His main research interests are in theoretical and comparative linguistics with a focus on the semantic and pragmatic categories of nominal expressions and their syntactic, morphological and phonological encodings (definiteness, specificity, information status, focus and topic structure, discourse management). His current research projects include the discourse properties of definite and indefinite noun phrases, indefinite demonstratives, Differential Object Marking in Romance languages from the perspective of language contact, and partitivity in Altaic languages.
Sarah Loriato
PhD Student, Linguistic Sciences
University of Bergamo, Italy

Sarah Loriato, a PhD student from the University of Bergamo, Italy, visited our department for the month of March. Her research project examines variation in a Veneto (northern Italian) variety spoken in a remote village in Brazil. She’s exploring the possibility of contact effects on (r). The village is Santa Teresa, in the municipality of Spirito Santo. Say hi to her live or at sarahloriato at hotmail dot com.
Dr. Mayuki Matsui
PhD, Hiroshima University, 2015
Department of Linguistic Theory and Structure, National Institute for Japanese Language and Linguistics (NINJAL), Japan

Dr. Matsui is a JSPS post-doctoral research fellow in the Department of Linguistic Theory and Structure at the National Institute for Japanese Language and Linguistics (NINJAL), Tokyo, Japan. She received her PhD at Hiroshima University, Japan, in 2015. Her research interests include the interfaces of phonology, phonetics, and psycholinguistics and the experimental investigation of sound structure and variation, using articulatory, acoustic, and perceptual methods. Her past research has mainly focused on the phonetics and phonology of laryngeal contrast and contrast reduction in Russian. She is working on the articulatory aspects of Russian obstruents in collaboration with Dr. Alexei Kochetov from September 2017 to August 2018.
Dr. Laura Rupp
Associate Professor, Department of English
Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Netherlands

She did her PhD thesis on grammatical theory at the University of Essex (UK) and soon developed an interest in grammatical properties of English varieties. Her current research is on grammatical constraints on variation. One the hand, she explores how insights from grammatical theory may help advance our understanding of grammatical conditioning of variation. On the other hand, she explores the window that grammatical properties of English varieties offer on the nature of grammatical rules. In the past few years, she has developed fruitful collaboration with researchers in the field of Language Variation and Change. This collaboration had led to a joint paper with Sali Tagliamonte on the historical development and current function of so-called complex demonstratives (e.g. this here park) in York English that will be published in English Language and Linguistics in 2017. During my visit to UofT from Jan 21-March 3, we will conduct further research and write a paper on two other vernacular demonstratives in York English: the zero article (e.g. Ø park) and the reduced demonstrative (e.g. t’ park). In other joint research with David Britain (University of Bern, Switzerland), she has been inquiring into the nature of the ‘Northern Subject Rule’ in varieties of English and the implications for linguistic theorizing on subject-verb agreement. According to the Northern Subject Rule, morphology on the verb is regulated by subject type (NP versus pronoun; e.g. The children gets away with it vs They get_ away with it), rather than the person/number properties of the subject.
Anja Thiel
PhD Student, Department of English
Unversity of Bern, Switzerland

Anja's research is focussed on North American sociophonetics and dialectology, with particular consideration of the dialect of the city of Ogdensburg, New York.


Melanie Röthlisberger
PhD Student, Department of Linguistics
Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Belgium

Melanie is based in the LCV lab at UofT, working with Prof. Sali Tagliamonte. Her research focusses on syntactic variaton and traces the development of the nine national varieties of English within the International Corpora of English (ICE) suite, compared with the LVC lab's own holdings from vernacular spoken corpora.


Claire Childs
PhD candidate in Linguistics
Newcastle University, England

I'm currently based in the LVC Lab at UofT to work on a project with Prof. Sali Tagliamonte, doctoral student Chris Harvey and one of my home supervisors, Prof. Karen Corrigan. We are conducting a quantitative investigation of not-/no-negation (e.g. There isn't anybody there vs. there's nobody there) across communities in Canada and Northern England. This has some cross-over with my PhD project (supervised by Prof. Karen Corrigan, Prof. Anders Holmberg and Dr Heike Pichler) which compares multiple variables of negation across three regional British dialects: Tyneside, Glasgow and Greater Manchester. I'm studying here for the next 10 weeks so look forward to meeting you all in the department or in the Advanced Language Variation & Change and Advanced Syntax classes!
Jorge Emilio Rosés Labrada
PhD candidate & Vanier Canada Graduate Scholar
Department of French Studies (Linguistics)
University of Western Ontario

My research interests lie primarily in the area of language endangerment, language policy and language documentation, and I have explored a number of methodological issues in linguistic vitality assessments and field methods training, as well as the applicability of models of language documentation and revitalization to different parts of the world. My primary research is on language documentation in Latin American contexts and my doctoral research project is a Vanier-funded collaborative documentation and description of Mako, a Sáliban language spoken in the Venezuelan Amazon by about 1200 people. The main goal of this collaborative project is to create a collection of annotated ethnographic texts and, ultimately, a grammar that can serve as a starting point for both language maintenance in the community and for further linguistic research. I also have an ongoing interest in the reconstruction of Proto-Sáliban and the pre-history of this small language family, which is why I am currently exploring a series of regular sound changes using my Mako fieldwork data as well as data in published sources and some legacy materials for the other putative members of the Sáliban language family, i.e. Piaroa, Sáliba and Jodï.
Dr. Ranjan Sen
Visiting Professor in Phonology, February-August 2014
University of Sheffield, UK

My main research interest is sound change, and I focus particularly on developing techniques to reconstruct and account for phonological change over time, and investigating to what extent synchronic structure plays a role in diachronic phonology. One aim is to improve methods used to access fine-grained phonetic evidence from dead languages, to allow a better evaluation of theories of change grounded in phonetics. In addition to phonological theory and historical linguistics, I have research and teaching interests in phonetics, psycholinguistics, and language acquisition.