LingUU 5.1 out now!

LingUU 5.1 is out now! The 9th issue of LingUU Journal features articles on various linguistic topics, written by students from different BA and MA programmes. Download the entire issue, browse through the contents, or order a paper copy (while supplies last).

The author of this paper, Carolin Tyrchan, wants to account for a parallel structural account of passives and antipassives in languages with a nominative-accusative and absolute-ergative system. The proposed suggestions are motivated by observations from case marking. Based on a critical review of previous accounts, this paper provides a first step towards a unified account of passives and antipassives across alignment systems. This account keeps the required syntactic operations at a minimum and, consequently, ensures simplicity.

Lila Oprins‘ paper deals with the diachronic semantic change of two verbs denoting taste in Dutch, smaken en proeven. Context is the key for discriminating which one is used when. The author explains why and how proeven takes over smaken nowadays by invoking semantics, but most importantly the syntax of the verbs. The exploration of the syntactic environment of the aforementioned verbs, provides illuminating insights on their change over time, recent use and preference of Dutch speakers, adding up to the chain of the verbs’ alternations and current employment.

Through a quest for symmetry, this paper by Lieke Hendriks explores the novel future-tobe construction (such as she is a bride-to-be). To find a theory to explain this construction in syntax, many analyses are examined, and other examples and data is used, because little is known about the future-to-be. Finally, small-clause formation was the best way to explain this novel construction. Small clauses allow subject and predicates to start in one constituent and refer to [NP XP]. To-be is the XP and through predicate inversion, the construction the soon-to-be bride is explained.

Georgios Chatzopoulos writes in Book Review about Wordcrime by John Olsson. This books goes into the world of forensic linguistics using 23 real life cases. According to Chatzopoulos, Olsson writes with passion and determination about what the true meaning of forensic linguistics is. A real recommendation for every reader interested in this relatively unexplored part of linguistics.

The Daily Linguist highlights upcoming conferences, podcasts and other online media about linguistics. In this issue the TABU day on June 10 and 11, the podcast Siencediction and a youtube channel with lectures about aphasia are mentioned.

LingUU 4.2 out now!

LingUU 4.2 is out now! The eight issue of LingUU Journal features articles on various linguistic topics, written by students from different BA and MA programmes. Download the entire issue, browse through the contents, or order a paper copy (while supplies last).

Iris van der Wulp discusses the influence of depression on language comprehension using the Affective Language Comprehension model. She examines both the role of depression in the recognition of (non-)verbal communication as well as what this means for how this is interpreted. Based on previous research, she concludes that depression results in a negative bias in the recognition of certain communicative signals. She argues that this can lead to a more negative interpretation of these signals and advocates more research into this question as to enhance communication with depressed individuals.

Rosanne van den Berg, Marian Marchal en Christina Papoutsi’sresearch paper investigates frequency effects on past tense verb retrieval. The authors examined whether highly frequent regular past tense verb are retrieved from declarative memory (i.e. directly), like irregular past tense verbs, instead of initially being decomposed in procedural memory. The authors expected to find an interaction between frequency effect and verb type. The results, however, did not support this hypothesis.

Süleyman Yaman covers the phenomenon of zero morphemes in Turkish relative clauses. Due to the agglutinative morphology, Turkish does not have many zero morphemes. This study hypothesizes that case markers (i.e. comitative, dative, locative and ablative) are omitted in Turkish relative clauses. The analysis showed that the case markers normally available on the independent clauses were omitted when they merged to form a relative clause.

Children who do not acquire a tone language seem to first lose their sensitivity for tonal contrasts, before regaining it at a later age. Why this sensitivity recovers, is still unclear. Zhou Yang proposes a research to examine this issue using near infrared spectroscopy, a technique that measures brain activity, with children of different age groups. He argues that different parts of the brain are active when discriminating tone contrasts than when using these tones in word learning. By comparing (brain) responses to tone contrasts by children of different age groups, this research will provide more insight into how children acquire the use of tone in their native language.  

Marjolein Talsma (RMA Linguistics) shows that a variety of languages allow for D(iscourse)-linked wh phrases to be extracted out of DPs. This is unexpected, as these DPs are considered phases and should therefore not allow movement. The author extends Van Craenenbroeck’s (2004) analysis of complex wh phrases to the case of D-linked wh phrases and argues that they are base generated in the left periphery. As such, they do not undergo movement and the grammaticality of these constructions is accounted for.

Annika Hulzebos (RMA Linguistics) interned at volunteer organisation Taal doet meer in Utrecht during her master Meertaligheid en Taalverwerving. In her internship she wanted to combine language and health. With her internship she could contribute to society and have an experience outside of the ‘academic bubble’.

And finally, our column The Daily Linguist is all about language related movies, documentaries, blogs, applications and events.

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LingUU 4.1 out now!

LingUU 4.2 is out now! The sixth issue of LingUU Journal features articles on various linguistic topics, written by students from different BA and MA programmes. Download the entire issue, browse through the contents, or order a paper copy (while supplies last).

Marian Marchal (RMA Linguistics) examines the acquisition of sentences containing both a modal verb as well as negation. She argues that a stage of Unique Scope Assignment might not be necessary to explain Italian-acquiring children’s interpretation of these sentences. An experiment is proposed to investigate whether children are able to access the adult-like interpretation if additional processing cost is controlled for.  

Bjorn Lichtenberg(RMA Linguistics) discusses how language has evolved by reviewing the cultural approach to this question. After outlining how language is viewed in this approach, research in favor of this theory is examined, In addition, the author reviews the validity of claims favoring a biological approach. The paper reveals that the cultural approach is able to explain many aspects of language evolution.

Lex Tavenier(RMA Linguistics) analyzes a construction which is typical for creole languages, namely, serial verb constructions. Serial verb constructions consist of at least two consecutive verbs while only one grammatical subject is present. The verbs enter into complex syntactic and semantic relationships. The author considers a couple of possible syntactic analyses for the serial verb construction and comes to conclude that the findings are compatible with both analyzing the construction as serialized IPs and with analyzing it as serialized VPs, though statistical corpus analysis seems to suggest the VP-serializing to be more probable.

Vanessa Kühn (RMA Linguistics) further investigates the way in which clinical symptoms of schizophrenia are reflected in language. Especially central in her paper is the link between clinical symptoms and the emotion word usage of patients. She presents two examples of the untypical emotion word use in patients and combines these insights with the emotion processing model by Vingerhoets et al. (2000). Using this model, Kühn illustrates the influence of clinical symptoms of schizophrenia on general emotion processing further.

Beactrice Bancheri (RMA Linguistics) discusses the importance of emotion in the acquisition of a first language. Based on a model on human cooperation, Bancheri shows that emotion and language are closely intertwined. In addition, she discusses several aspects of language acquisition, such as infant-directed speech and word learning, in which emotion plays a prominent role.

Elina van Greuningen (RMA Linguistics) interned at the Humboldt Universität in Berlin. Here she researched the effect of the similarity between the German and Dutch language on the acquisition of gender in Dutch. In addition to her research experience, her stay in Germany was a special cultural experience with the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall.

Anouschka van Dijk (Msc Neuroscience and Cognition) discusses the film The Silent Child by directors Chris Overton en Rachel Shenton. This film follows a family with a four year old child named Libby who was born deaf. When the family hires a social worker who teaches Libby sign language, the new ability to communicate opens up a new world for her. Anouschka recommends the film to those who are interested in the obstacles a deaf person faces and those who are looking for a new perspective on the importance of language and communication.

And finally, our column The Daily Linguist is all about language related movies, documentaries, blogs, applications and events.

LingUU 3.2 out now!

LingUU 3.2 is out now! The fifth issue of LingUU Journal features articles on various linguistic topics, written by students from different BA and MA programmes. Download the entire issue, browse through the contents, or order a paper copy (while supplies last).

Walther Glödstaf (RMA Linguistics) discusses long distance case assignment on Finnish direct objects. It has been argued that they violate the Phase Impenetrability Condition, stating that operations cannot take place across multiple phases (Brattico, 2014). He proposes an analysis to show that this is actually not the case using data from Finnish relative clauses.

Sanne Ditewig (RMA Linguistics) proposes a study on children with ALI (Autism Language Impairment) and their knowledge of the constraints on the binding of reflexives. Previous research has shown that children with ALI do not have full knowledge of the constraints on the binding of reflexives, however  this was only tested for the c-command constraint of Principle A. Sanne suggests to also look at the locality constraint of Principle A, in order to investigate the nature of this impairment.

Judith Brinksma and Nelleke Jansen (RMA Linguistics) report on their study on phonetic convergence of students who are originally from Limburg and now live in Utrecht. They compare these students’ pronunciation of two phonemes, /ɣ/ and /v/, with that of students who are raised in Utrecht in two tasks: reading a word-list out loud and a socio-linguistic interview. Factors affecting the differences in convergence found between the participants are also discussed. 

Milou Leeijen (MA Meertaligheid en Taalverwerving)  examines
non-standardized dialects in Northern Brabant. Leeijen focuses primarily on morfo-syntactic similarities and differences between the Noord-Meierijs and Kleverland dialects. Topics discussed include: doubling of the subject, double negation, adjectives, the inflection of pronouns and the inflection of articles. This should result in either finding a clear boundary between both dialects or discovering that both dialects have influenced each other.

Dylan Bonga (RMA Linguistics) analyzes two programs which can be used to classify errors that second language learners make in the correct use of prepositions. He suggests that while these programs both perform quite well, their recall levels constitute something that might be improved upon. To solve this problem, Bonga proposes to incorporate the effect of native language transfer into error classification programs.

The guest paper by Nizar Hirzalla (MSc Artificial Intelligence, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam) discusses the linguistic characteristics of social media text messages from populist parties. Through a computational analysis using different kinds of Natural Language Processing (NLP), the rhetorical and linguistic patterns have been detected. The analysis is based on a comparison between two Dutch populist parties, PVV and Identitair Verzet and an upcoming party, The Yellow Vest Movement. 

Janna van Egmond (MA Taal- en Spraakpathologie) interned at the UMC in Utrecht where she worked on data collection for research on speech in various psychiatric disorders. During this time she also worked on her own Bachelor’s thesis about language in schizophrenic patients.

Roos Kerrebijn (BA Dutch Language and Culture & BA Linguistics) discusses The Infinite Gift by Charles Yang which is about the impressive language abilities of children. Roos invites all to read the book because of its writing style and Yang’s knowledge of his field and adjacent fields.

Finally, we have a little surprise: this issue contains our brand new section,The Daily Linguist!

New editors wanted

Dear fellow linguists,

Our university has its very own (under)graduate journal for linguistics: LingUU Journal. This is a journal where you, students, can publish papers you are proud of, or papers in which you show something that more people should read, other than just your teacher.

Since the academic year is progressing swiftly, we are looking for new members for our editorial board!

What can LingUU Journal offer you?
A position in the editorial board of LingUU offers the possibility to take a look inside the organisation of scientific publications, gain knowledge on good (academic) writing and develop your organisational abilities.

Interested? We are looking for students that would like to fill the following positions:

  • Senior editor (division of tasks regarding submitted manuscripts, keep track of the status of manuscripts, assistance of the editors in chief, various other editorial tasks)
  • Secretary(write minutes, create and manage archives, manage e-mails and distribute the issues)
  • Treasurer (attracts financial support, takes care of orders and manages the budget of the journal)
  • Designer & webmaster (management of the journal’s layout and website)
  • Editor (search for and approach contributors, solicit manuscripts, revise submitted content)

Are you interested in linguistics, science in general, and the distribution of knowledge, and would you like to be involved in a student journal? Send an e-mail to before June 12, 2019. Your e-mail must consist of the following parts:

  • Name and surname;
  • Current study;
  • Field(s) of interest within linguistics (e.g. phonetics);
  • Post(s) of interest;
  • Short motivation;
  • An indication of the time you would like to be part of the board (e.g. one year).

Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions at all. We are looking forward to see your application.

Warm regards,

Mandy de Kuiper and Myrthe van der Veen 
Editors in chief of LingUU: (undergraduate) journal of Linguistics

Call for Papers – November 2018

Have you written a linguistics paper, research proposal or thesis you are proud of? Consider submitting your work to LingUU, the official, peer reviewed, student journal of Linguistics at Utrecht University. In this journal, both undergraduate and graduate students can publish their papers.

The deadline for the next Call for Papers is November 11, 2018.

Why should I submit?

Students sometimes come up with ideas that are worth sharing, and develop creative theories that more people should read, other than just the teacher. LingUU provides a way to make this happen, while giving students the opportunity to get to know the world of academic publishing small-scale. Publishing in LingUU is a great learning experience for starting academics and enables you to improve your work through peer feedback.

What can I submit?

LingUU features articles from all subdisciplines of linguistics and publishes in both Dutch and English. Apart from full-blown articles, research proposals are also welcome for submission. Besides scientific articles, you can submit reports on internships abroad and book notices.

You can find examples of published articles in our first issue.

How do I submit?

You want to submit; that’s great! Please read our guidelines for authors first, to make sure your work meets our requirements. Next, submit it through our online form, on November 11 at latest. Within a few days after the deadline, you’ll receive more info about the reviewing and publication process.

If your paper is accepted (after revision), it will be published in the issue of April 2019, or in November 2019.


If you have questions left, do not hesitate to contact via You can also check the frequently asked questions first.

We’re looking forward to receiving your paper!

Submit your paper