April 9, 2021

Matt Faytak (PhD 2018) reports that, after a 2 year post-doc/lecturer position at UCLA, he has accepted a position as an Assistant Professor at SUNY Buffalo, and will start this August. Congrats, Matt!

January 26, 2021

Calques is saddened to report the passing of colleague and Berkeley Linguistics PhD alumnus Tucker Childs. We are forwarding the announcement sent out to students in Applied Linguistics at Portland State:

With heavy hearts, we are writing to tell you that Professor Tucker Childs passed away yesterday, January 26, 2021. As many of you know, he was admitted to the hospital at the beginning of January. Unfortunately, Tucker was not able to overcome the complications of legionella. He passed away peacefully with his wife and daughter at his side.

If you would like to offer Tucker's family your condolences or help celebrate Tucker's life by sharing a fond memory of your time with him , please visit his memorial page:

We will be in touch about memorial events for the department community soon. Even before that, please don't hesitate to reach out to each other and to faculty as we all grieve the loss of our professor, mentor, and colleague. This sad time is even harder since we can't come together physically, but we can still be a community. [...]

In lieu of sending flowers, please consider donating to the Sherbro Foundation—a non-profit dear to Tucker, which empowers rural Sierra Leone through education and agriculture development. Tucker was also a great supporter of the Nattinger Scholarship in our department. You can make a donation in his memory through the PSU Foundation.

Our hearts go out to Tucker's family and to all who knew Tucker. He will be greatly missed.

The Faculty and Staff of Applied Linguistics

Tucker Childs

January 12, 2021

Congratulations to Amalia Skilton (PhD, 2019), who will begin a 3-year Klarman Fellowship at Cornell University in July 2021. Klarman Fellowships "provide postdoctoral opportunities to early-career scholars of outstanding talent, initiative and promise. Among the most selective of its kind in the country, the program offers independence from constraints of particular grants, enabling the recipients to devote themselves to frontline, innovative research without being tied to specific outcomes or teaching responsibilities."

January 6, 2021

Congratulations to Amalia Skilton (PhD, 2019), who has been awarded the SSILA Archiving Award in Honor of Michael Krauss! From the official announcement:

The committee recognizes the Ticuna Archive, assembled and archived by Amalia and housed at the Survey of California and other Indian Languages. The archive stands out not only for the breadth of materials which it contains, but also for its meticulous organization and curation, which are documented in the guide to the materials, and published in Language Documentation and Conservation. In addition, the committee particularly notes the level of community-engagement exemplified by Amalia’s discussion of ethics and permissions associated with the collections and the level of accessibility of the collection. Amalia lives up to the spirit of Michael Krauss in creating high standards for documentation and archiving and at the same time as contributing to linguistic theory through her research on such topics as deixis, language acquisition, and Ticuna grammar.

The Society for the Study of the Indigenous Languages of the Americas (SSILA) has announced that the Mary R. Haas Book Award has been awarded to Amalia Skilton (PhD, 2019):

Dr. Amalia Skilton (University of California, Berkeley) has been awarded SSILA Mary R. Haas Book Award for her thesis Spatial and Non-Spatial Deixis in Cushillococha Ticuna. This dissertation is an exquisite piece of work in both methodology and the theoretical contributions. The replicability of the several experiments—both with other Ticuna speakers and cross-linguistically—is a highly desirable feature in the context of the study of Indigenous languages. It also makes important theoretical contributions to the area of semantics and pragmatics of demonstratives, providing evidence that demonstratives encode visibility contrasts. This finding challenges the current dominant view that demonstratives carry information regarding distance but do not encode perceptual deictic content. The study also provides evidence that demonstratives do not contrast necessarily in terms of ‘distance’ between speaker/addressee and referents, but in terms of ‘peripersonal space,’ the space within reach of the speaker.

Kelsey Neely (PhD, 2019) was selected for an honorable mention for the award:

Dr. Kelsey Neely (University of California, Berkeley) has also been selected for honourable mention for The Linguistic Expression of Affective Stance in Yaminawa (Pano, Peru). The committee praised this thesis for its comprehensive nature, consisting of both a grammar of Yaminawa with context-rich examples and a detailed study of affective stance, and for its potential broader impacts of the work, particularly with respect to language education.

Congratulations, Amalia and Kelsey!

January 5, 2021

Congratulations to Christian DiCanio (PhD, 2008) who has been awarded tenure at Buffalo!

October 8, 2020

The program for the 51th annual meeting of the North East Linguistic Society (to be hosted virtually by the Université de Quebec à Montreal) has just been released, promising the following presentations by current department members and recent alumni:

  • Amy Rose Deal: 3-on-3 restrictions and PCC typology
  • Peter Jenks: Names as complex indices: On apparent Condition C violations in Thai
  • Laura Kalin and Nicholas Rolle (PhD '18): Deconstructing subcategorization: Conditions on insertion vs. position
  • Edwin Ko: Feeding agreement: Anti-locality in Crow applicatives of unaccusatives

Congrats all!

Congrats to Geoff Bacon, who recently filed his dissertation Evaluating linguistic knowledge in neural networks and has just taken up a position as a computational linguist at Google!

August 16, 2020

Congratulations to Drs. Cheng, Cychosz, Dawson, and Shen who have recently completed their dissertations!

  • Andrew Cheng: "Accent and ideology among bilingual Korean Americans”
    Andrew will be starting in a post-doctoral research position at UC Irvine in September.
  • Meg Cychosz: "Phonetic development in an agglutinating language"
    Meg started a post-doctoral research position at the University of Maryland in August.
  • Virginia Dawson: "Existential quantification in Tiwa: disjunction and indefinites"
    Ginny is now Assistant Professor of Linguistics at Western Washington University.
  • Alice Shen: "Costs and cues in the auditory comprehension of code-switching"
    Alice spent the summer working at Facebook and will be teaching at Reed College during 2020-21.

The dissertations are all available on our departmental website.

June 11, 2020

In connection with the campus celebration of the 150th anniversary of the first women students at the University of California, the linguistics department has made a web page honoring some of the many women who have contributed to our work over the last 120 years:

This may expand or evolve in the coming days and months. The committee that put the page together (Madeline Bossi, Margaret Cychosz, Andrew Garrett, Zachary O'Hagan, Emily Remirez, and Tessa Scott) is very grateful to the many contributors who wrote thoughtfully and shared pictures.

May 23, 2020

Our alum Jenny Lederer (PhD, 2009) has been promoted to Associate Professor with tenure in the Department of English Language and Literature at San Francisco State University. Congratulations, Jenny!

May 12, 2020

Congratulations to Charles B. Chang (PhD, 2010) who has been awarded tenure at Boston University!

A new article has been published based on Emily Cibelli's 2015 Berkeley dissertation. Congrats, Emily!

Cibelli, E. (2020). Articulatory and perceptual cues to non-native phoneme perception: Cross-modal training for early learners. Second Language Research.

Rumor also has it that Dr. Cibelli is moving back to the Bay Area.

January 29, 2020

Now that 2019 is in the books, congratulations to our 2019 PhD alumni!

January 13, 2020

Congrats to Zach O'Hagan, whose paper A Phonological Sketch of Omagua, co-authored with Clare Sandy (PhD 2017), has now been published in the International Journal of American Linguistics!

November 22, 2019

Congrats to alumnus Nik Rolle (PhD 2018) on the birth of his son Jude Thomas Deverell!

Rolle and son

Congrats to alumnus Jack Merrill (PhD '18), who will be joining the Princeton University Program in Linguistics this spring as a Lecturer!

October 10, 2019

The 2019 Annual Meeting on Phonology is taking place this weekend at Stony Brook. Berkeley is represented by two talks by current dept members and recent alumni:

  • Karee Garvin, Myriam Lapierre , Martha Schwarz and Sharon Inkelas: Modeling Vowel Quantity Scales in Q Theory
  • Nicholas Rolle (PhD '18) and Florian Lionnet (PhD '16): Phantom structure: A representational account of floating tone association

Congrats all!

September 22, 2019

The Proceedings of WSCLA 23 (Workshop on Structure and Constituency in the Languages of the Americas) have recently been published, containing the following papers by department members and recent alumni:

Congrats all!

September 9, 2019

The program for the 9th Conference on Indigenous Languages of Latin America (CILLA IX) has just been released, promising the following presentations by current department members and recent alumni:

  • Zachary O'Hagan: Complex Temporal Relations in Caquinte: The Case of =ta and =ja
  • Wendy Liz Arbey López Marquez: Los aplicativos en el popoluca de la Sierra
  • Myriam Lapierre, Tessa Scott, Karee Garvin: Morphologically conditioned (sub)segmental subtraction in Mam
  • Kelsey Neely (PhD '19): Metrical phonology in the verbal domain in Yaminawa (Pano, Peru)
  • Amalia Horan Skilton (PhD '19): Demonstratives and reaching space in Ticuna

Congrats all!