Morten Christiansen, Ph.D.

Morten Christiansen's picture
William R. Kenan, Jr. Professor of Psychology, Affiliated Scientist Haskins Laboratories
Cornell University


Professor, Psychology,
Cornell University
Co-Director of the Cognitive Science
Program at Cornell

External Professor, Santa Fe Institute


Department of Psychology
Cornell University,
Ithaca, NY 14853

Research Interests

My research focuses on the interaction between biological and environmental constraints in the evolution, acquisition and processing of language. I employ a variety of methodologies, including computational modeling, corpus analyses, psycholinguistic experiments, neuroimaging, and molecular genetics. The goal is to develop a unified framework for understanding language across multiple time-scales: evolution, acquisition and processing.

Representative Publications

Frank, S.L., Bod, R. & Christiansen, M.H. (2012). How hierarchical is language use? Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 279, 4522-4531.

Monaghan, P., Christiansen, M.H. & Fitneva, S.A. (2011). The arbitrariness of the sign: Learning advantages from the structure of the vocabulary. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 140, 325-347.

Chater, N. & Christiansen, M.H. (2010). Language acquisition meets language evolution. Cognitive Science, 34, 1131-1157.

Misyak, J.B., Christiansen, M.H. & Tomblin, J.B. (2010). Sequential expectations: The role of prediction-based learning in language. Topics in Cognitive Science, 2, 138-153.

Wells, J., Christiansen, M.H., Race, D.S., Acheson, D. & MacDonald, M.C. (2009). Experience and sentence processing: Statistical learning and relative clause comprehension. Cognitive Psychology, 58, 250-271.

Supported Grant

Investigator, A-195, Individual Differences in Learning Potential for Language and Literacy