Student project ideas

Hello, CityU students!

I am looking for well-trained and dedicated student collaborators to explore the following research topics and at the same time fulfill the requirements of BALLA projects (LT4235/LT4391) and MA research or capstone projects (LT6582/LT6580) in 2022-2023:

(In some cases, the relevant data have been collected and transcribed, and are ready for analysis. In others, data collection and processing is on-going. In general, the student is expected to have built up a good foundation in core areas of linguistics, taken courses in language acquisition (first, second or bilingual), and are prepared to receive training and engage in self-learning in transcription and data analysis using CHILDES and CLAN, as well as develop skills conducting basic statistical tests using SPSS or R.

1. English input directed to a trilingual toddler in Hong Kong 
  • Potential research questions: The toddler develops his knowledge in English through 3 different sources of input in the family (his mother, Filipino domestic helper, elder brother). Is the English input directed to him different across sources? If so, in what aspects? Does the child respond to different types of input differently or similarly?
  • Data available: systematic video recordings of naturalistic conversations in English between the child and his English input providers (mother, helper, brother); partially transcribed
  • Suitable for: students who have very advanced proficiency in English; 3-credit projects
2. Language attrition in a school-age heritage speaker in the US
  • Potential research questions: The child (age 8) was born and raised in the US and acquired Cantonese from interacting with mother, Mandarin from father and English from teachers and peers at school. When she began her school education, her English gradually became stronger, and her Mandarin and Cantonese weaker. How did her language ability change over 5 years from age 3 to 8? Which linguistic structures of Mandarin and Cantonese are retained in her linguistic system and which ones are vulnerable and at risk?
  • Data available: longitudinal speech data of naturalistic conversations between the child and her parents in the three languages; systematically recorded over 5 years from age 3 to 8; transcription needed
  • Suitable for: students who are fluent speakers of Cantonese, English and Mandarin; 6-credit projects
3. Child-directed Cantonese in Hong Kong and Guangzhou
  • Potential research questions: Cantonese is spoken between parents and young children in both Hong Kong and Guangzhou. What are the differences and similarities between the Cantonese input provided by parents of these two cities in terms of vocabulary and grammar? Do they code-mix and code-switch frequently? What language(s) do they mix into Cantonese and in what contexts?
  • Data available: longitudinal and cross-sectional video recordings of naturalistic or elicited conversations of parent-child dyads in Hong Kong and Guangzhou; partially transcribed; data collection is on-going
  • Suitable for: students who are (near-)native speakers of Cantonese; research scope and workload can be adjusted to suit 3 or 6-credit projects

If you are interested in working with me and my team for your 3-credit or 6-credit projects investigating the above topics, please send me an email introducing yourself and your academic background (CV, academic transcripts, etc.).

I am happy to work with student authors of outstanding project papers to develop the papers into high-quality manuscripts and submit to academic journals for publication.