Melinda Fricke


I am a psycholinguist interested in how speakers’ and listeners’ linguistic experience impacts the way they process language.  My work typically focuses on the interplay between phonological processing (how we break words up into smaller, sound-based units) and lexical access (how we find words in memory).  I am especially interested in the relationship between these processes and the production and perception of phonetic variation (but I have also been known to dabble in questions of syntactic priming here and there).

I use a variety of methods and work with a variety of speaker populations in my research.  This is because I want to understand what language users do with their language that ultimately impacts their processing.  Corpus work is an essential component of my research program: I have used the Bangor Miami Corpus to investigate how Spanish-English bilinguals codeswitch during spontaneous conversation.  I use eye tracking to study how listeners from different language backgrounds (monolinguals, second language learners, and proficient bilinguals) recognize the words they hear.  And I am learning to use EEG to study the relationship between neurocognitive indices of language regulation and the production of language switching-related phonetic variation.

Please have a look around, and email me if you have any questions.  I am happy to hear from undergraduate and graduate students who are interested in pursuing research investigating the relationship between language variation and language processing.


Contact Information

Department of Linguistics

2822 Cathedral of Learning

4200 Fifth Avenue

Pittsburgh, PA 15260

(412) 624 - 5918

Office Hours, Spring 2017

W, 3:00 - 4:30

Last updated September 22, 2016.

Assistant Professor | Department of Linguistics | University of Pittsburgh