My research investigates how various language learners – typically and atypically developing, monolingual and bilingual children, as well as child and adult second language learners – acquire and process structural aspects of language (aka grammar). I am particularly interested in the contributions of factors beyond the grammar proper, including information at the discourse level, general cognitive abilities (e.g., working memory), as well as language experience.
I have been a linguist since my preschool days in Switzerland, when I pondered the difference in vowel quality in the Swiss-German word for 'chimney' as pronounced by my mother (/xæmi/), my father (/xœmi/), and my grandmother (/xemi/). After obtaining a lic. phil. I degree in Anglistik and Germanistik from the University of Zürich, I went to McGill University in Montreal (Canada) to get a PhD in Linguistics, followed by postdoctoral work at the University of Montreal. After further postdoctoral work at the Center for Infant Studies at Stanford University, I arrived in Hawai'i in 2011.
If you would like to talk to me about my research, your research, a class I teach, or take me out for (good) coffee, come and find me in Moore Hall, rm 404.
Department of Second Language Studies, University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa,