Tuesday, May 12, 2009

ISER funds MUN linguistics students

Two MUN linguistics students have just received research grants from the Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER). Jennifer Thorburn will receive funding for her project, "Inuit English in Nain, Labrador: A sociolinguistic analysis of salient supra-local features in an isolated ethnolect." Suzanne Power will receive funding for "Newfoundland English: Sociolinguistic Variation in Placentia Bay." These grants will help defray the costs of fieldwork as Jenn and Suzanne travel to these communities to collect sociolinguistic data that will form the basis of a dissertation (Jenn) and thesis (Suzanne).

Saturday, May 2, 2009

The Language That Ate The World

In late April, 11 students from local middle schools spent three days in the department, finding out about the past, present and future of English, as part of an enrichment mini-course called “The Language That Ate The World: English and How It Got That Way.” Grad students Rachel Deal and Matt Hunt Gardner, along with prof Gerard Van Herk, took the students through a range of hands-on activities, looking at everything from Old English ulcer remedies to Tok Pisin road safety manuals. And the students generated data of their own, working on recent slang, language use questionnaires, and trends in texting.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Will Oxford receives one of the new Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships

Will Oxford, who completed his MA with our department in 2007, is one of the inaugural recipients of the new Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships—the most important, prestigious and sought-after scholarships for doctoral students. Scholarship recipients will receive $50,000 each year for up to three years. A total of 166 scholarships will be awarded in 2009. The scholarship fund is administered by Canada’s three federal research granting agencies: SSHRC, NSERC and CIHR.

Mr. Oxford, the only linguist to receive the award, will begin his doctoral studies at the University of Toronto, where he will continue the research on Innu-aimun syntax, which has already appeared as a book, begun during his MA in the Department of Linguistics at Memorial.

For additional information about Will's award, see the MUN Gazette article.