The Research Group in Morphology


Bringing together the research interests of faculty in phonology, syntax and semantics, the morphology research group focuses on understanding the interface between lexical representation, phonological processes, and sub-lexical structure. The question of whether or not a separate Morphology module is needed to mediate between the syntax and the phonology is of primary interest, as is the relationship between Optimality-Theoretic phonology and generative syntax., We are also concerned with the question of lexical representaiton, and the locus of word-formation processes -- i.e., is there a generative lexicon, or not? Particularly with respect to this last question, the work of the lexical-access group in the Psychology department complements the theoretical approach of the linguistics faculty.

Research Group Participants

Faculty with primary interests in Morphology:

  • Kenneth Forster (emeritus; (Ph.D. U Illinois, 1964) Lexical Access, Psychomorphology (Psychology)
  • Michael Hammond (PhD, UCLA, 1984) Morphophonology, Computational Morphology (Linguistics)
  • Heidi Harley,(Ph.D. MIT 1995) Case, Distributed Morphology, Lexical Syntax Nominalizations, Causatives (Linguistics)
  • Simin Karimi,(Ph.D. UWash 1989) morphological featuers, argument structure, DP syntax, complex predicates, Persian morphology. (Department of Linguistics)
  • Antxon Olarrea. (PhD. UWash 1996) word order & agreement typologies (Department of Spanish and Portuguese)
  • Ofelia Zepeda (PhD, U Arizona, 1984) Tohono O'odham morphology (department of Lingustics)
  • Adam Ussishkin (PhD, UCSC,2000) Semitic morphology especially Maltese and Hebrew

Faculty with secondary interests in Morphology:

  • Andrew Carnie, (Ph.D. MIT 1995) Case & Ergativity, Distributed Morphology (Department of Linguistics)
  • Diana Archangeli(PhD, MIT, 1984) Morphophonology, Prosodic Morphology (Department of Linguistics)
  • LouAnn Gerken, (PhD, Columbia U, 1987) Acquisition of Morphology (Departments of Linguistics and Speech and Hearing).
  • Robert Henderson, (PhD UCSC 2012) Mayan morphology, especially Kaqchikel, K‛ichee‛ and Uspanteko

Graduate Students Affiliates:

  •  Jonathan Geary
  •  Meg Harvey
  •  Isabel McKay
  • Adam King


  • Sonia Bird (Linguistics)
  • Lindsay Butler (Linguistics)
  • Ana Carla Bruno
  • Shiloh Drake (Linguistics)
  • Megan Figueroa (Linguistics)
  • Lea Hald (Linguistics)
  • Jason Haugen (Linguistics)
  • Robert Keneddy (Linguistics)
  • Hyun-Kyoung Jung (Linguistics)
  • Nick Kloehn (Linguistics)
  • Will Lewis
  • Christine Mahoney (Linguistics)
  • Miziki Miyashita (Psychology)
  • Laura Moll (Linguistics)
  • Peter Norquist (Linguistics)
  • Jeffrey Punske (Linguistics)
  • Angelina Serratos (Linguistics)
  • Daniel Siddiqi (Linguistics)
  • Tatyana Sloboddchikoff (Linguistics)
  • Deniz Tat (Linguistics)
  • Cosette Terry-Itewaste (Linguistics)
  • Alexandra Trueman (Linguistics)
  • Mercedes Tubino-Blanco (Linguistics)
  • Alina Twist (Linguistics)
  • Samantha Wray (Linguistics)

Research Projects

  • The Agressive Parser: the morphology-syntax interface (telicity and word structure in English, double objects)
  • Hiaki reduplication
  • Case and Ergativity
  • Distributed Morphology
  • The computation of morphological structure
  • The psychological reapresentation of morphologically complex words
  • Navajo morphosyntax
  • Tohono O'odham reduplication
  • Native American electonic dictionary project
  • Little v and lexical syntax
  • Animacy hierarchies and derivations

Graduate Programs in Morphology

The research group, in coordination with the department of linguistics, sponsors a Ph.D. in Linguistics with a specialization in Morphology, Morphosyntax, or Morphophonology and related areas.

A masters degree in the morphology of Native American languages is offered by the Linguistics dept.