What is psycholinguistics?

While linguistics studies the structure of natural language, psycholinguistics studies how people process natural language. A review of previous research will show that humans have a propensity for language that is far greater than any other species. Some argue that the complexity of human language is a reflection of the human mind’s vast cognitive ability, and many believe that language is special and interestingly different from any other cognitive function. Current research is beginning to show how language can interact with other cognitive domains as well as emotional processes.

What kind of topics are currently being addressed by the lab?

-Bilingualism and emotional response
-Two cultures, two languages — bilingualism and cross-cultural psychology
-How does lying in your first language differ from lying in your second language? (contact Norma Sanchez at normas@bu.edu)
-Visual word recognition, conscious and uncionscious pattern recognition using event related potentials and behavioral studies
-Different languages and rhetoric strategies in self-promotion: Would you write your job application differently if you had to write it in a language other than English?
-Artificial intelligence strategies for building grammars based on corpora
-Speech perception in noise
-How do deaf children lean to read in English by learning English as a second language?

For projects outside of language, see Prof. Caldwell-Harris’ website, or visit our Projects page.

How do I get involved in psychology research?

Research opportunities include:
Directed Study | 2 or 4 credits. Obtain a directed study application from CAS advising room 105.
Volunteer | We request a committment of 2-6 hours per week.
Teaching Internship | Assist with lecture development (make powerpoint slides, review material to be presented).

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