I’m a Ph.D. candidate in Linguistics and Cognitive Science at the University of California, San Diego. I am a member of the Mayberry Laboratory for Multimodal Language Development.
I study language development with focuses on processing and the neurobiological foundations. How do early language experience during a critical time window shape the highly efficient neural network for language processing? What are the processing limitations for people with early language deprivation when they access lexical items and combine words to form simple phrases, and how do these limitations compare with those faced by younger children, aphasic patients, and children with specific language impairment? What neurobiological foundations, caused by either biological immaturity, decreased plasticity, brain injure, or genetic defects, reflect those limitations? How would those processing limitations at the basic combinatory level affect the processing and learning of more complex linguistic structures? What makes such learning possible for young children, but not for older L1 learners? These are the questions I kept asking in my research.
Currently I’m mostly working with adolescent first language learners of American Sign Language who only had very limited access to language in their early years. I work on behavioral as well as neural data, with a focus on early syntactic development.