I joined the University of Leeds as a Teaching Fellow in 2011 and became a Lecturer a year later. I was promoted to Associate Professor in 2018.
Previously, I obtained my MPhil in 2006 then my PhD in developmental pragmatics in 2011, both from the University of Cambridge. I did my postdoc with the School of Psychology at the University of Kent in 2010.
I am available for postgraduate research supervision. I consider quality applications in first language acquisition which take a constructivist approach, particularly concerning the development of reference and pragmatics, the nature of the language input, or other topics relating to my research interests below. Please get in touch if you would like to discuss project ideas in more detail. Please note that I can not supervise projects in L2 pragmatics.
Director of Research, School of Languages, Cultures, and Societies
My research interests are in first language development, pragmatics, and psycholinguistics. I use experimental data (behavioural; eye tracking) to investigate pragmatic development, i.e. how children understand and produce meaning beyond vocabulary and grammar. My main area of research investigates how aspects of a child's language input influence their own language development. Most of my research in the early part of my career looked at how children and adults integrate information from communicative contexts (including speaker identity, discourse goals, and common ground) into their referential choices in both production and comprehension.
My current ESRC-funded projectChildren's experience, understanding, and use of adjectives across the socioeconomic spectrum(withJamie Lingwood) aims to reveal how children’s socioeconomic background might affect their descriptive language abilities. It uses eye tracking experiments, corpus analyses, and a randomised controlled trial to investigate children's psycholinguistic processing within its social context, leading to recommendations for families and practitioners working with children facing challenges with adjectives and other forms of descriptive language.
I completed the British Academy funded projectExploring psycholinguistic eye tracking methodologies and data analytic techniques, withHelene Kreysa(Friedrich-Schiller University of Jena, Germany). As part of this grant, we have recently published two papers on the integration of visual and linguistic information during the production of referring expressions by adults and children.
<p>Any research projects I'm currently working on will be listed below. Our list of all <a href="https://ahc.leeds.ac.uk/dir/research-projects">research projects</a> allows you to view and search the full list of projects in the faculty.</p>
PhD Overinformativeness in Referential Communication
MPhil English and Applied Linguistics
BA (Hons) Linguistics and Phonetics
Experimental Psychology Society
Research groups and institutes
Linguistics and Phonetics
<h4>Postgraduate research opportunities</h4>
<p>We welcome enquiries from motivated and qualified applicants from all around the world who are interested in PhD study. Our <a href="https://ahc.leeds.ac.uk/research-opportunities">research opportunities</a> allow you to search for projects and scholarships.</p>