I am a sixth year Doctoral Student in Linguistics at the University of Connecticut.
My dissertation title: The predictive power of lexical semantics on the acquisition of passive voice in young children
Broadly, this dissertation asks:
What is the role of evidence, or the language input which must be processed to develop language competence, in the acquisition of complex syntactic structures?
*How might we characterize and quantify evidence?
*How does looking at the evidence differently change the way we perceive the learning problem?
Given that there’s cross-linguistic variation and variation in a child’s input, how do children learn which verbs participate in any given complex syntactic structure (e.g. passives, double-object constructions, etc.).
*How can learning the lexical semantics of a verb be informative for children in such a learning task?
Specifically, this dissertation asks:
What can input frequency and lexical semantic features tell us about how children acquire the English verbal passive?
I used a combination of in-depth corpus analysis, computational modeling, behavioral experiments in order to investigate these questions.
Nguyen, E. (2019). The predictive power of lexical semantics on the passive behavior in young children. Poster at 44th Annual Boston University Conference on Language Development (BUCLD 44). Boston, MA. November 8-10, 2019. [PDF-poster]
Nguyen, E. (upcoming, 2020). The predictive power of lexical semantics on the passive behavior in young children. Poster at The 94th Annual Meeting of the Linguistic Society of America. New Orleans, LA. January 2-5, 2020.