Plenary Speakers

Prof. Alan Juffs (The University of Pittsburgh, USA)
Prof. Makiko Hirakawa (Chuo University, Japan)
Prof. Ianthi Maria Tsimpli (University of Cambridge, UK)
Prof. Michael Harrington (Queensland University, Australia)

Prof. Alan Juffs is originally from the United Kingdom, where he earned both his BA (French and German) and an MA in Applied Linguistics. He earned his PhD in Linguistics at McGill University in Montreal, Canada. He has worked in language education in France, China, Japan, Canada and the USA. He taught English in China from 1982-1984 and in Japan from 1985-1989. He is currently Professor of Linguistics and Director of the English Language Institute at the University of Pittsburgh, where he has been teaching since 1993. His research interests include the lexicon and argument structure, sentence processing and working memory, ESL materials development, and the use of online tools for language education. His most recent research focus is using learner corpora to track language development. He is co-editor of the Pitt Series in English as a Second Language textbooks and a past President of University and College Intensive English Programs.

Makiko Hirakawa earned her BA in English at Tsuda College in Tokyo, and her MA and PhD in Linguistics at McGill University in Montreal, Canada. She is former president of the Japan Second Language Acquisition (J-SLA) (2009-2015) and is currently Professor of the Department of English Studies at Chuo University. She specializes in linguistic approaches to second language acquisition, attrition, bilingualism and language education. Her research interests include child and adult L2 acquisition and bilingual acquisition: in particular, knowledge of argument structure of different types of verbs and adjectives, tense and aspect, and interpretations of reflexive pronouns. She has worked on various research projects with her students and colleagues on the acquisition of various grammatical properties of L2 English and L2 Japanese. Most recently she has been working on the effects of instruction on grammatical knowledge of L2 English by Japanese speakers as well as how L2 acquisition of Japanese affects the first language of immigrant children residing in Japan.

Prof. Ianthi Maria Tsimpli holds a BA from the University of Athens and a PhD in Linguistics from University College London (1992). She recently held positions of Professor of Multilingualism and Cognition at the School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences, Reading and Professor of Psycholinguistics and Director of the Language Development Lab, Thessaloniki, Greece. She is currently Chair in English and Applied Linguistics at the University of Cambridge, where she teaches and conducts research in bilingualism/multilingualism, language development and impairment, and theoretical syntax. She has worked extensively on the case of Christopher, a polyglot-savant, and the book she co-authored with Neil Smith entitled The Mind of a Savant: Language Learning and Modularity (1995, Blackwell) has also been translated into Japanese (1996). Her two most recent EU co-funded research projects investigate child bilingualism and the effects of bilingual education on cognitive and linguistic abilities (THALES), as well as the role of individual differences in adult monolinguals on anaphora resolution (Excellence I).

Prof. Michael Harrington received a BA (Psychology and Linguistics) from the International Christian University in Japan and an MA in English as a Second Language from the University of Hawai’i, Manoa. He earned his PhD in Experimental Psychology from the University of California, Santa Cruz. Originally from the USA, Michael is currently Senior Lecturer and Director of the MA in Applied Linguistics and TESOL Studies at the University of Queensland, Australia. He has also been active in university English language program development in Oman, Vietnam and Malaysia. He has published in the areas of second language working memory, sentence processing, lexical processing and testing, and computer-mediated second language acquisition and assessment. His current research focuses on the lexical basis of second language performance, in particular, the role of word recognition speed and consistency as a dimension of second language performance, both independently and in combination with word knowledge. This question is examined in his forthcoming book Lexical Facility from Palgrave MacMillan.


The Pacific Second Language Research Forum