Morgan Moyer

Department of Linguistics
Rutgers University, New Brunswick
18 Seminary Place
New Brunswick, NJ 08904


I am a fourth year graduate student at Rutgers University. My research interests include language acquisition and learnability, semantics and pragmatics, philosophy of language, philosophy of mind, and epistemology.

My research intersects linguistics, psychology and philosophy, in particular, I'm interested in the interaction between linguistic representations and other areas of cognition. I am a member of the Laboratory for Developmental Language Studies, directed by Kristen Syrett. I am also pursuing a Certificate in Cognitive Science through the Rutgers Center for Cognitive Science, under the supervision of Paul Pietroski. Previously, I was a research assistant at the Project on Children's Language Learning at the University of Maryland. I worked there on several projects with Valentine Hacquard and Jeff Lidz on the acquisition of the semantics/pragmatics of attitude verbs.

In semantics/pragmatics, I work with Kristen Syrett exploring the distribution of mention-some readings of embedded questions. I'm interested in how their distribution is licensed by contextual/discourse goals, and yet constrained by the linguistic representation of the embedded clause.

I am also working with Bruce Tesar on the learnability of prosodic systems. I explore the challenge of maintaining restrictiveness in the face of paradigmatic subsets, and propose an inductive solution using Tesar (2014)'s Output-Driven Learning Algorithm which solves this problem by exploiting neutralizations evident from a language's phonotactic distribution.

In my free time I hang out with my cat, Cezi, I practice yoga, I write sestinas and play guitar.