I'm a fourth year PhD student in the Department of Linguistics at the University of Maryland, College Park, where I'm co-advised by Naomi Feldman and Bill Idsardi. My focus is in computational psycholinguistics: I am interested in the relationship between continuous and discrete representations of speech sounds, with a focus on the acquisition of phoneme categories.
Categorical distinctions between speech sounds are made on the basis of distinguishing intentional timing relationships between articulatory gestures. Language learners must infer these relationships from acoustic and visual sensory data using knowledge of speaker identity and affect. “Motherese” or Baby Talk, systematically deforms the linguistic input available to the child, and yet, appears to assist in the learning process. This phenomenon provides insight into how infants exploit, rather than ignore speaker-specific variation when learning language. I explore these processes using computational modeling and information theory.
Before starting graduate school, I received a BA in Linguistics and a BS in Computer Science from the University of Maryland, College Park.