USC Ling Weekly Digest May 8

Congratulations to Chorong Kang and Syed Saurov,
who both successfully defended their dissertations last week! 

Over the weekend, Roumi Pancheva visited Salt Lake City, the site of the LSA Annual Meeting, January 4-7, 2018. If you go to the LSA, you too can see these mountains!


The Southern California Meeting in Phonology (SCaMP) was held at UCLA on Saturday, May 6. Charlie O’Hara gave a talk on “Interactions of learnability and phonological grammar drive the typology of coda stop inventories.” A bunch of the USC gang joined for merriment afterwards at Barneys in Westwood.


Betül Erbaşı and Songül Gündoğdu presented “Ezafe across language families: Iranian and Altaic” at the 1st North American Conference on Iranian Languages (NACIL1) in Stony Brook (april 28-30).


USC Ling Weekly Digest April 24

Khalil Iskarous gave a talk titled “The interaction between phonetics and phonology in the realization of listner-based sound change” with Darya Kavitskaya at the 4th Sound Change Workshop at the University of Edinburgh, Scotland.


This week:

Monday 04/24 at 4pm in the Conference Room: Syntax+! Betül Erbaşı and Songül Gündoğdu will present “Ezafe across language families: Iranian and Altaic”.

Thursday 04/27 at 4:30pm in the TBD: PhonLunch! Hayeun Jang is presenting “Effects of intervening consonants in Korean umlaut”.

Also Thursday 04/27, at 5pm in the Conference Room: Psycholing lab meeting! Ana Besserman will talk about “Implicit Arguments and Discourse.”

Here are some lovely pictures of the 36th Annual Academic Honors Convocation, where Saurov Syed officially received the Oustanding Teaching Award of 2017!

USC’s 19th Annual Undergraduate Symposium for Scholarly and Creative Work

Congratulations to all the undergraduate students who presented their research at the USC’s 19th Annual Undergraduate Symposium for Scholarly and Creative Work. This year featured lots of really interesting work! Here are some of the presenters:

. Patrice Zhao presented “Asking Questions: Effects of Word Order on Language Production”.
. Catherine Wang and Justin Nichols presented “When Pronouns Disagree: A Psycholinguistic Investigation”.
. Claire Witzke presented “Judgments in Nativeness for Constructed Languages: Dothraki”.
. Jesse Mena, Justin Nichols, and Joshua Segui presented “Automatic Detection of the Grammatical Vocabulary of Language: Lithuanian, Polish, and Irish”.
. Joshua Segui presented “The Morphosyntax of Double Object Clitics in Kambera”.
. Last but not least, congratulations to Nimisha Patil (double-majoring in Biomedical Engineering and Film Production) who won the prize for best interdisciplinary poster with her work titled “Comparison of Basic Beatboxing Articulations using Real-Time Magnetic Resonance Imaging”!

USC Ling Weekly Digest April 17

Congratulations to Khalil Iskarous for his promotion to Associate Professor!

And congratulations to all the students who were awarded fellowships: Jessica Harmon for the USC Graduate School Final Year Fellowship, Charlie O’Hara for the Morkovin Endowed Fellowship and Binh Ngo for the Research Enhancement Fellowship!


Roumyana Pancheva gave a colloquium talk at UConn on “Logophoricity effects in double object structures with clitics” (joint work with Maria Luisa Zubizarreta) on 03/31.


Peter Guekguezian gave a colloquium at Fresno State called “Multiple Spellout Meets Parallel Phonology” on Thursday 4/6.

Peter Guekguezian also presented “Compatibility, Antagonism, and the Nature of Coarticulation: the SaySiyat Pharyngeal” (joint work with Khalil Iskarous) at the 24th Annual Meeting of the Austronesian Formal Linguistics Association in the University of Washington, Seattle on Saturday 4/8.


This is the penult week of classes! 😳

Monday 04/17 at 3:30pm in the Conference Room: Lisa Davidson’s (NYU) colloquium talk on Gradient phonation patterns in American English obstruents.”

Tuesday 04/18 at 9am in the Reading Room: Justin Nichols and Catherine Wang will give a practice talk on “When Pronouns Disagree: A Psycholinguistic Investigation of Imposters” for GLEEFUL 2017.

Thursday 04/20 at 12:30pm in the Conference Room: PhonLunch! Samantha Gordon will talk about “Coordination in multimodal spontaneous speech”.


Stay tuned for an upcoming post about the Linguistics Undergraduate students and the research they presented at the 19th Annual Undergraduate Symposium for Scholarly and Creative Work!

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USC Ling Weekly Digest April 10

Congratulations to Saurov Syed, who has been offered a USC Dornsife Preceptor teaching position following his graduation!!


Last week, Khalil Iskarous gave a talk at George Mason University Krasnow Institute on “Dynamical principles underlying octopus body patterning, a visible neural network”.


“What’s happening this week?”, you ask?

Monday 04/10 at 3:30pm in the Conference Room: Syntax+Thomas Borer will present his poster for GLAC “The Person Case Constraint in Swiss German – A Movement Analysis”.

Wednesday 04/12 from 11am to 2pm in the TCC ballroom: the Undergraduate Symposium for Scholarly and Creative Work! This event will feature research posters by USC undergraduates, including at least two linguistics posters:
. “Asking questions: Effects of word order on language production” by Pengchen (Patrice) Zhao
. “When Pronouns Disagree: A Psycholinguistic Investigation” by Justin Nichols and Catherine Wang

Thursday 04/13 at 5pm in the Conference Room: Psycholinguistics Lab Meeting! Monica Do will talk about “How are Questions Made? The Sequel: A Production Study of Wh-Questions”.

USC Ling Weekly Digest April 3

April is here!

Congratulations to Brian Hsu (USC Ph.D. 2016) on being offered and accepting a two-year postdoctoral fellowship at UNC Chapel Hill!


This past weekend a group of USC linguists met up at CUNY, which took place at MIT. Binh Ngo presented a poster on “Discourse coherence and pronoun use: Null and overt pronouns in Vietnamese” (joint work with Elsi Kaiser), Ana Besserman presented a poster titled “Discourse and Sentence-level Expectations in Second Language Comprehension: Addressing the RAGE hypothesis” (joint work with Elsi Kaiser), alumna Barbara Tomaszewicz presented a poster on “Focus structures and the processing of discourse congruence” (joint work with Petra Schumacher), and Elsi Kaiser presented a poster titled “Research is fun, psycholinguists are intelligent: Perspective sensitivity in adjectives” (joint work with Jamie Herron Lee) and gave a talk on “Prosodic reflection of rapidly-updated expectations: Revisiting givenness” (joint work with Iris Ouyang and Sasha Spala).


Thursday, 04/06 at 5pm in GFS330: Psycholinguistics Lab meeting! Stefan Keine will presentDiagnosing constraints through inter-speaker variability”.

USC Ling Weekly Digest March 27

Today is a day for congratulations!

Congratulations to Hayeun Jang, who has received a Korean Summer Fieldwork Grant from the USC Korean Studies Institute in support of her project “Fieldwork on Seoul Korean consonants in palatalization and umlaut”!

And congratulations to Chorong Kang, whose paper “Korean Intervention Effects are not a single phenomenon: evidence from syntax-prosody interface” was accepted for publication in the Linguistic Review!

USC Ling Weekly Digest March 3

Welcome back from spring break, everybody! There are less than 6 weeks until the last day of classes.

Mythili Menon (alum, PhD 2016) presented a talk on “Degree Achievements of Color” (joint work with Roumyana Pancheva) at FASAL 7 at MIT.


Peter Ara Guekguezian gave a talk to Phlunch at UC Santa Cruz on 3/10 entitled ”Prosodic Effects of Syntactic Cyclicity inside the Word”.

USIL  is organizing  an Irish Language workshop on March 22nd led by Professor Tok Thompson! Please sign up here.


This week, in the linguistics department:

Today, 03/20, at 3:30pm in the conference room: Syntax+! Huilin Fang will talk about “Ganjue and ganjue-dao ‘find/feel’: a comparison”.

Thursday, 03/23, at 3:30pm in the conference room: Phonlunch! Yoona Yee will present “Target assymmetries in consonant harmony”.


Thanks everybody for another excellent open house event! 





USC Ling Weekly Digest March 6th

Congratulations to Saurov Syed and Andrew Simpson, whose paper “On the DP/NP status of nominal projections in Bangla: Consequences for the theory of phases” has been accepted for publication at GLOSSA! You can find the paper here.

Bhamati Dash has just returned from MIT where she presented at FASAL 7. Bhamati presented a poster on “Anticipatory Processing with an Impoverished Cue: An experimental study of wh scope marking constructions in Hindi” (joint work with Elsi Kaiser) and gave a talk titled “Kya high ki low? An investigation of the yes/no particle in Hindi, Bangla and Odia” (joint work with Saurov Syed).

This week we have our Open House! Here are some highlights you won’t want to miss:

  • On Wednesday (03/08) we’ll have the graduate student dinner at Cynthia’s in Downtown LA;
  • Thursday (08/09): breakfast check-in at 9am; department luncheon at 12pm; psycholinguistics lab meeting at 4pm; and the department dinner at 6pm!
  • Friday (08/10): Syntax+ meeting at 11am, lunch at 12pm.

USC Ling Weekly Digest Feb.27

Coming your way soon: Chorong Kang’s new son Dan!
Chorong will be returning to USC to complete and defend her dissertation in late April/May, and will be bringing her son along with her.  Dan is going to be checking USC out as a possible place for his later studies, so please give him a warm welcome.


Congratulations to Shri Narayanan, who was named first holder of the Niki and C. L. Max Nikias Chair in Engineering! Read more here.

Last week, Rachel Walker taught a mini course at MIT on “Sub-segmental Representation” and she gave a colloquium on Temporal Structure in Phonology”. Her visit coincided with unseasonably warm record-breaking weather in Cambridge.
Here’s a picture of the Museum of Fine Art in Boston near MIT:

Elsi Kaiser gave a talk entitled “Who should I agree with? Imposters and mismatches in pronominal agreement” at the Debrecen Workshop on Pronouns, held at the University of Debrecen, in Hungary. Here are some pictures of the University:

And here’s the scoop on this week:

Thursday 03/02 at 5pm in the Linguistics Conference Room:
Psycholinguistics lab meeting! Jesse Storbeck will talk about his screening project on “Acquisition of non-adjacent categorical dependencies in an artificial grammar.”

And Friday 03/03, NhaBinh Ngo will give a practice talk on “What influences the choice of classifier? A case study in Vietnamese”, in preparation for a talk she will give at Northeastern Illinois University. Exact time and place will be announced soon.

As usual, if you have any news or updates, please send them our way!