Our research mission is to understand the linguistic, social, cognitive, and perceptual factors that underlie human beings' remarkable ability to communicate with one another.  We use empirical methods to explore questions including psycholingusitic phenomena in communicating with robots and automated conversational agents

  • the mental machinery underlying the comprehension of language

  • linguistic and articulatory phenomena in the process of speaking

  • children's emerging linguistic abilities

  • patterns of language change

  • children and adults' processing of speech bearing regional or nonnative accents

  • changes in language abilities over the adult lifespan

  • how children use language to acquire knowledge and develop intuitive theories about how the world works

  • the nature of word meaning and semantic categorization

These and other questions are explored using a variety of methodologies including cutting-edge laboratory techniques, computational explorations of language corpora, and fieldwork.