2090 Foreign Languages Bldg.
I am a language learner, teacher, and researcher. Born in Hubei province and grew up in Shenzhen, I acquired Mandarin, two Hubei dialects, and Cantonese. Then I started to learn English in elementary school and French during undergraduate years. I am currently self-studying Korean and Japanese. As an undergraduate, I organized English corner and taught English at a private tutoring agency. After coming to the U.S., I accumulated five years of experience in teaching Chinese as a second language from kindergarten level to college level. In my PhD studies, I investigate the Chinese language with the help of mathematical models, computer programs, and psycholinguistic experiments.
When I am free from work, I like cooking, reading on my kindle, playing soccer, and participating in outdoor activities. My profile picture was taken at the entrance to the Mount Kilimanjaro National Park, which is the highest point in Africa. It is my most memorable trip up to now.
My research focuses on three fundamental features of language: information, cognition, and interaction.
Language and information theories
Language is the foremost tool for human beings to transmit information. Information is encoded into language and decoded from language. The mechanism of language naturally observes the principles in information theories and can be modeled mathematically. My research projects using information theories and mathematical models include:
1. Model the sequence of constituents in Chinese disyllabic coordinated compounds in a corpus with statistical analysis (presented at NACCL-30)
Language and cognitive faculty
Language is considered to be unique to human beings by some scholars, partly because our brains are more developed and capable. Studying language can reveal how our brain and cognitive faculty work. I use online and offline psycholinguistic experiments to probe the comprehension and production of Chinese.
My previous project showed future temporal adverbs such as "tomorrow", "immediately", "next time" can affect our interpretation of a sentence either as a promise or as a refusal (presented at the 4th International Conference on Psycholinguistics in China).
My dissertation project examines how the ability to predict influences language production in Chinese.
Language and social interactions
Language is closely related to social interactions. It is used to construct our identities, express our feelings, share our experiences, discuss our opinions, defend our values, and claim our rights. My research aims to reveal broader social implications in the light of language. Some examples include:
1. how gender is constructed and represented in China through the usage of the words "female drivers", "male drivers", and "drivers" (to be presented at APCLC-2020)
2. how Chinese restaurants in the U.S. claim ethnic identify with the restaurant names (presented at Asia Transforming: Old Values and New Presences)
MA, Seton Hall University
BA, Nanjing University
2017, National Federation of Modern Language Teachers Associations (NFMLTA) Conference Travel Award ($1000)
2017, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures, Graduate Research Fellowships ($3000)
2017 – 2018, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Graduate College Conference Travel Award ($350)
Awards and Honors
2019, Finalist of the Annual Young Scholar Award for Best Paper in Chinese Linguistics, 27th Annual Meeting of the International Association of Chinese Linguistics, Kobe City University of Foreign Studies, Japan (I ranked No.1 among 54 candidates)
2019, Graduate student second prize, Data Visualization Competition, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
2018, Performance-based bonus for teaching, Princeton in Beijing program
2017, 2016 List of Teachers Ranked as Outstanding (top 10%) by Their Students, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Corpus linguistics and language teaching (summer workshop)
Application of technology in language teaching (summer workshop)
Intermediate Chinese II (CHIN204)
Intermediate Chinese I (CHIN203)
Elementary Chinese II (CHIN202)
Elementary Chinese I (CHIN201)
Additional Campus Affiliations
Graduate assistant at Center for East Asian and Pacific Studies