NLP research assistant position at OHSU

The Informatics Discovery Lab at OHSU’s Department of Medical Informatics and Clinical Epidemiology is searching for a full-time research assistant with skills and interests in natural language processing, beginning this summer.

The work is focused on building classifiers on Pubmed citation data. Strong programming skills, preferably Python, are a must. Familiarity with descriptive statistics and either SQL or noSQL databases is important. Experience with regression, collaborative software development and word-embedding and topic modeling methods is a plus.

The position will open up in either July or August of this year. Contact Zackary Dunivin ( to apply or to request more information.

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UMass Amherst Ph.D. Student Position in Psycholinguistics

Ph.D. student position in Psycholinguistics (Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences), University of Massachusetts Amherst

The Cognition and Cognitive Neuroscience Division of the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences at the University of Massachusetts Amherst is recruiting students interested in pursuing a Ph.D., starting in Fall 2017. With this ad, we are specifically encouraging students to apply with an interest in Psycholinguistics. The following faculty members work in this area:

Alexandra Jesse’s lab studies auditory and audiovisual speech perception and spoken word recognition, and changes in these processes across the lifespan (with a special emphasis on aging). Using both behavioral (e.g., eye tracking) and neuropsychological methods, her work concentrates on the temporal dynamics of processing and binding speech within and across modalities, perceptual learning (e.g., about speaker idiosyncrasies), and on perceptual and cognitive influences on speech recognition. For more information on the UMass Language, Intersensory Perception, & Speech (LIPS) lab, please see

Lisa Sanders’ lab is focused on 1) understanding the neurocognitive mechanisms of basic auditory perception, speech perception, and selective attention across the lifespan, and 2) determining how attentional control and perceptual learning can lead to better perceptual outcomes, including understanding speech in background noise. To accomplish these goals, the lab uses behavioral, electrophysiological, and neuroimaging measures in listeners ranging from 20 months to 85 years of age. More information about her research and lab team can be found here:

Adrian Staub studies syntactic parsing and word recognition, and the interface between these things, often by tracking readers’ eye movements. He is interested in details models of the relationship between eye movements in reading and language comprehension. In collaboration with colleagues, he also use eye movements to investigate spoken language comprehension, as well as other aspects of cognition like memory and reasoning. Finally, he studies aspects of language production, specifically, how speakers compute agreement. More information about his research can be found here: More information about the UMass Eyetracking Lab can be found here:

Applicants should have a strong background in Psychology, Cognitive Science, Linguistics, and/or another related discipline (e.g., Communication Disorders, Speech Sciences). Experience with experimental research is preferred; a strong interest in experimental methods is required.

Our program offers training in a variety of behavioral and neuropsychological methods (e.g., eye tracking, imaging) and in statistical methods (e.g., computational modeling, Bayesian statistics). We also strongly encourage students to collaborate with other faculty members within the Cognitive Division, who focus on memory, visual and auditory cognition, decision making, attention, and sleep, and we maintain a rich tradition of collaborations with colleagues from other disciplines, such as Linguistics and Communication Disorders, both here at UMass as well as nationally and internationally.

Applications should be submitted through the University of Massachusetts’ general application process. Application guidelines can be found at the UMass PBS Cognitive Division website and at the UMass Graduate School website. The application deadline for entry next Fall is January 2, 2017.

UMass Amherst, located in Amherst, Massachusetts, sits on nearly 1,450-acres in the scenic Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts, 90 miles from Boston and 175 miles from New York City. The campus provides a rich cultural environment in a beautiful rural setting close to major urban centers.

The University of Massachusetts is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer. Women and members of minority groups are encouraged to apply.

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Reed Friedman Student-Faculty Research Fellowship

Dear Colleagues,

I write to you as people who might be interested, or chairs of programs or departments containing people who might be interested in this new, but quite niche, student-faculty research fellowship. The details are on the fellowships website:

We have some money left from an old grant “to promote the study of Japanese American history, literature, society or similar topics specifically relevant to Americans of Japanese descent.” What is left will support two of the fellowships indicated here, and, given that it is not an obvious area of study at Reed, we will continue to offer the opportunity (and advertise it on the fellowships pages) until the money is utilized. Please pass on to anyone who might be interested.

Thank you to Doug for doing the lion’s share of the work in drafting the language, and thank you to Doug and Hyong for agreeing to do the review of any applications we might get. Deadline is early March, as for most undergraduate research fellowships.

Let me know if you have questions,


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Lecture: Music, Dance, and the Construction of the Habitus


The Music Department invites you to a lecture on Monday 11/28 by Lawrence Zbikowski, at 4:40 PM in Eliot 314.

Lawrence Zbikowski’s principal research interests involve applying recent work in cognitive science (especially that done by cognitive linguists and cognitive psychologists) to various problems confronted by music scholars, with a particular focus on music theory and analysis. This lecture explores some of the ways that music and dance—both together and apart—set up the “structuring structures” that Pierre Bourdieu called the habitus. The focus will be on social dance as it was practiced in France’s ancien régime and in early nineteenth-century Vienna. Zbikowski will be particularly interested in ways musical materials are organized to facilitate dancing, and how the steps of the dance interact with patterns set up by the music. As he argues, it is through relationships like these that music and dance provide a structure for social interactions—that is, how they construct the habitus.

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Linguistics Department statement regarding climate, accommodations, dialogue

In response to the uncertainty that has developed at both a local and national level, the faculty members of the Linguistics Department at Reed College affirm the statement made by the Linguistic Society of America, that we stand for:

“…diversity, inclusion, and respect for all. Above all, we cherish multilingualism and multiculturalism — in our members, in those who participate in our programs, and in those who work with us in documenting and analyzing languages. At a time when political rhetoric has been so divisive, it is important for us to come together around the values we share as a society with a scientific mission.”

These values call on us to be mindful and respectful of how different groups and individuals are experiencing higher levels of stress and uncertainty. As such, our Department reaffirms our commitment to open, continued dialogue about the concerns and needs of our students. For our students seeking advice, a safe space, or specific accommodations, we want to hear from you, either in or after class, during our posted office hours, or in individually scheduled appointments.

While we maintain the same set of overall expectations for all students of a given course, including high quality work on final projects and exams, we appreciate that each student may take a different path to achieve those expectations. We invite students to come speak with us one on one, not just to discuss accommodations, but to build and maintain an open dialogue in keeping with our mission of inclusion and respect.


The 2016-2017 Linguistics Faculty

Kara Becker
Sameer ud Dowla Khan
Katy McKinney-Bock
Julia Thomas Swan

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Course Announcement – Ling 313

Linguistics 313- Topics in Language and Society
Language, Race and Ethnicity in the West

Full course for one semester. This course is an opportunity to explore the unique linguistic situations of various ethnic groups in the North American West. Building on concepts from 211 and 212, the course presents in more detail the social and linguistic dynamics of ethnic speech communities in the West, with attention to the unique historical and socio-cultural experience of ethnic groups in the West. Social dynamics will be considered alongside theoretical approaches to identity construction, language attitudes and outcomes in terms of linguistic behavior. Students will complete a final capstone project exploring language use among a particular ethnic community of the North American West. Conference.

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University of Rochester PhD Program

University of Rochester’s Kurumada Lab is accepting applicants to our PhD program in the Brain and Cognitive Sciences. Kurumada’s lab investigates the pragmatic aspects of language processing and development: How do young children become able to make adult-like pragmatic implicatures? How do child/adult listeners navigate the noisy and variable spoken input to make reliable pragmatic inferences? Our research combines experimental and computational methods in studying real-time sentence processing. We seek to understand how the bottom-up spoken input is integrated into top-down expectations about the speaker intentions. Our ongoing projects focus on language development, conversation, speech and prosody, sentence processing, pragmatic adaptation & generalization, and communication of pragmatic and social meanings.

The language group in BCS at the University Rochester has a number of researchers (Mike Tanenhaus, Dick Aslin, Florian Jaeger, Brad Mahon, Rajeeve Raizada, Steve Piantadosi, Celeste Kidd) pursuing active and strong research programs. Students have ample opportunities to attend multiple lab meetings, talks and reading groups, some of which have regular attendees from other departments as well. The group has a long history of supporting excellent grad students and post-docs. Many of the alumni are currently PIs at various institutions (a list of alumni can be found here). There are rich collaborations across labs in the BCS department as well as with researchers in the Linguistics department. We support a dual Ph.D degree in BCS and Linguistics/Computer Science.

For more information please visit the department website. Any inquiries about the program and Kurumada lab’s research should be directed to Chigusa Kurumada (

The application deadline for Fall 2017 admission is December 1. Applicants to the program can go to the following link for more information:

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UNC’s MA in Linguistics


Greetings from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill! I am writing to let your undergraduate majors and minors know about UNC’s master’s program in Linguistics. We offer a wide range of courses in all of the “core” areas of formal linguistics (syntax, semantics, morphology, phonetics, phonology, language acquisition and historical linguistics) as well as many additional areas including computational linguistics, writing systems, sociolinguistics, bilingualism and Mayan languages. Student funding is available on a competitive basis.

Our faculty members are well connected with other faculty in the area who work on language, both in other departments at UNC and at area universities (Duke University, North Carolina State University), and our faculty and graduate students have developed relationships with several minority language groups in the vicinity (in particular S’gaw Karen and Cherokee).

We have an active undergraduate major, and although we no longer offer a PhD degree, our MA and our dual degree BA/MA programs are thriving. Our MA graduates have been accepted to top tier PhD programs in linguistics around North America, such as UMass Amherst, UCLA, Stanford, Rutgers, NYU, University of Delaware, UT Austin, Indiana University, and University of British Columbia.

Questions about our program may be directed to me, Misha Becker (, Director of Undergraduate Studies, or Elliott Moreton (, Director of Graduate Studies.

Thank you for your time!

Best wishes,


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Brandeis – MA in Computational Linguistics


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Call for Undergraduate Abstracts – BLS 43

The 43rd Annual Meeting of the Berkeley Linguistics Society (BLS 43) will take place Friday through Sunday, February 3rd – 5th, 2017, on the UC Berkeley campus. BLS 43 welcomes abstract submissions from all areas of descriptive, experimental, and theoretical linguistics.

New this year, BLS will host an undergraduate poster session. We invite undergraduates and recent graduates who are not yet enrolled in graduate programs to submit abstracts related to the areas of phonetics, phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics, pragmatics, sociolinguistics, historical/comparative linguistics, computational linguistics, and psycholinguistics. Descriptive, theoretical, and experimental approaches are all welcome.

The period for submissions is now open. Please submit your abstracts through our EasyChair conference page by 11:59 pm PST on November 1st, 2016.

Participation in BLS 43 is an excellent way to receive feedback on your work from prominent scholars, including invited speakers and those giving talks within the general session, special session, and parasession. The special session will focus on language contact and dynamics, and the areal parasession will highlight the languages of North and Central America.

Invited Speakers:
Norma Mendoza-Denton (University of California, Los Angeles)
Omer Preminger (University of Maryland)
Keren Rice (University of Toronto)
Natalie Schilling (Georgetown University)
Sarah Thomason (University of Michigan)

Submission Guidelines
Abstracts are due by November 1st, 2016 at 11:59 PST. Please submit all abstracts through EasyChair. Authors will be notified of acceptance by December 1st.

Authors may maximally submit one single-authored abstract and one co-authored abstract. Abstracts, including titles, data, and examples, must fit onto 1 page with 1″ margins and 12pt font. References may be included on a separate page. Abstracts must be anonymous; omit names or phrasing (e.g. my paper (Author 20XX) ) that would otherwise reveal author identity. Surname-year citations (Author 20XX) that do not identify the author of the abstract as the author of the cited paper are acceptable.
Please fill out all required fields in EasyChair and check the “Undergraduate Poster Session” option as well as at least one box indicating a topic corresponding to the linguistic subfield(s) of greatest relevance to your abstract. All submissions will be anonymized for review.

Check our website for general information and updates concerning the conference.

For submission related questions, please email For all other questions, please email

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