Language data: What is it? How do we analyze it? What can it tell us?

Date / Time

October 21, 2021

4:00 pm - 5:30 pm


When linguists talk about “language data,” they may refer to one of two broad categories: data that exist in the wild and data that do not already exist but are elicited specifically for our research purposes. In this talk, Anna Tsiola, a visiting lecturer at the University of Illinois Chicago, will discuss how psycholinguists elicit, collect and analyze linguistic information in order to understand how humans process (understand and produce) language. I will present the more traditional, comparison-based experimental designs as well as more recent analytical tools involving unsupervised learning models. I will bring examples from both seminal papers and my own research in second language learning. Secondly, I will briefly touch on the topic of already existing data, and the pipeline of the research processes which takes data in the wild and transforms it into informed conclusions about humans and their characteristics.

Tsiola completed her PhD in Linguistics at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign in 2021. Anna specializes in psycholinguists and second language acquisition, and is particularly interested in multimodal input processing in a second language. She researches the relationship between the process and the outcomes of language learning and is interested in mixed methods designs, triangulating data, and exploring novel methodologies and analytical tools.

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