Bridget Samuels

Research interests

My broad research aim is to understand the architecture of grammar from a biolinguistic viewpoint both synchronically and diachronically: throughout an individual’s life, across generations, and on an evolutionary timescale. As a phonologist who has a deep interest in syntactic theory as well, I am particularly concerned with integrating phonology into a Minimalist conception of the language faculty.

The research program explored in
my forthcoming book involves rethinking the primitives of phonological representations & processes in light of what we know about phonology’s interface with morphosyntax, language acquisition, linguistic variation/change, and cognition in other domains/species. My recently completed experiments include investigations of phonological rule learning in both adults and infants using artificial learning paradigms.

Academic background

Postdoc, Linguistics department / Cognitive Neuroscience of Language Lab, University of Maryland, 2009-2011

Ph.D., Linguistics, Harvard University, 2009
The structure of phonological theory [PDF]

A.M., Linguistics, Harvard University, 2006
magna cum laude with highest honors in Linguistics, Harvard University, 2006
Nothing to lose but their chains: rethinking vocalic chain shifting


University of Maryland, 2010

Harvard University, 2008-2009
Derek Bok Center Certificate of Distinction in Teaching, Fall 2008 & Spring 2009

Professional service

I am currently a member of the Biolinguistics editorial board, having served since its founding on the journal’s task team. I also maintain the journal’s affiliated blog and twitter. In the past few years, I have reviewed for Biolinguistics, Language Acquisition, Language Analysis, The Linguistic Review, and NELS.
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