I am currently working on several projects, including:

Implementing a Rhetorical Approach to Grammar in First-Year Writing & Rhetoric

In this dissertation project, I leverage rhetorical grammar, Construction Grammar, and Systemic Functional Linguistics to support first year college writing students to make grammatical choices that are informed by their higher-level rhetorical goals (to write in a particular genre, for a specific purpose, audience, and context). Through this project, I aim to contribute to applied linguistics, by making linguistic concepts more accessible to writing students; writing studies, by demonstrating how teaching grammar rhetorically (for meaning and purpose) can help first-year college writing students make genre-specific choices; and Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, by providing a descriptive case study of student learning with respect to an innovative teaching approach.

Polysemy, Metaphor, and Lexeme Integration in the Location-Subject Construction

In this project with Katie Conger, we are working with corpus data from enTenTen15 in Sketch Engine as well as the Corpus of Contemporary American English to study several research questions surrounding the “Location-Subject” Construction, an understudied argument structure construction. We are currently analyzing its semantic frame(s), polysemy, integration with different verb classes, use in figurative language, and aspectual sensitivity. This project has resulted in one conference presentation.

Semantic Variation of racist on Twitter

Using cognitive sociolinguistic corpus methods, I analyze variation in the use of the word racist by tweeters with “blacklivesmatter” vs “maga” in their user descriptions. The corpus for this project consists of tweets with the search term racist from December 2018 – Feb 2019, scraped using twarc. In a series of corpus studies, I have examined the degree to which these two groups of tweeters use different grammatical constructions with racist, and what these syntactic differences demonstrate about how tweeters conceptualize the concept of racism differently. This project also draws on linguistic anthropological theories about different ideologies of racism, showing how ideology is apparent in the syntax-semantics interface. This project has resulted in seven conference publications and two publications.