Research Areas

  • Computational and Language Evolution (CALE):  Led by Professor Taraka Kasicheyanula, this lab considers application of computational approaches such as Neural networks and Bayesian methods to language evolution 

Application of computational approaches such as Neural networks and Bayesian methods to language evolution have become increasingly popular over the last few years. In our research, we focus on development and understanding these methods as applied to historical data of languages. An example is the paper on prediction of modern Indo-Aryan languages' word forms from Sanskrit (the common ancestor of the Indo-Aryan languages) published with Association for Computational Linguistics based on word shape and meaning information. Another paper focused on testing if automated cognate detection techniques are useful for phylogenetic inference. We find that automated cognate detection techniques can be useful for inferring family trees that are agreeable with those proposed in historical linguistics
Disentangling dialects: a neural approach to Indo-Aryan historical phonology and subgrouping
Are Automatic Methods for Cognate Detection Good Enough for Phylogenetic Reconstruction in Historical Linguistics?

  • Second Language Acquisition Group (SLA Group):  Led by Professor Xian Zhang, this research group the SLA group engages international and UNT undergraduate and graduate students to study second language acquisition. We are particularly interested in applying various approaches (e.g., experimental, meta-analysis, fMRI) to understand and enhance second language acquisition. We also conduct research to test SLA theories. Some recent topics include second language vocabulary knowledge, foreign language anxiety,  and embodied cognition. 
     
  • Computational Resource for South Asian Languages (CoRSAL):  Led by Professor Shobhana Chelliah, the Computational Resource for South Asian Languages (CoRSAL) is a digital archive for source audio, video, and text on the minority languages of South Asia. 

    The aims of the Computational Resource for South Asian Languages research group are: 
  • Language Documentation, Description, and Pedagogy
  • Linguistically Underserved Communities and Health
  • Language Endangerment and Political Violence
    Political instability and violence create an environment for language loss and resulting in social instability. The Political Instability and Language Endangerment (LEPI) research track began with a conference and workshops to develop a thorough understanding of how political instability and violence break apart communities and erode their ability to pass down their written and spoken word.  Access links to LEPI meetings here.
     
  • The Language of Sexual Violence