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Dr Hunter Hatfield

MA (Mississippi) PhD (Hawai'i at Mānoa)

Email hunter.hatfield@otago.ac.nzhunter hatfield with hat
Phone +64 3 479 9087
Office 1N10
1st Floor
Arts Building
Albany Street
Dunedin

Mail Department of English and Linguistics
University of Otago
PO Box 56
Dunedin 9054
New Zealand

Teaching

LING 111 Language and its Structure
LING 240 Language, Brain and Being Human
LING 318 Child Language
LING 342 Laboratory Phonology
LING 415 Psycholinguistics (not offered 2018)
LING 423 Special Topic: Language Processing

Hunter reflects frequently on his teaching, always trying to understand how he, his professional expertise, and formal education generally can help students flourish in their future lives. With this in mind, he was a member of Division of Humanities’ Rethinking the BA and Core Paper working parties. In what he considers his greatest professional achievement, he was awarded the Overall Top Teacher Award for the university by OUSA in 2015.

Hunter is also the creator of the University for Your Life programme.  UniForYou is a place for students to reflect on what they want out of life so they can make choices about how to spend their time at Otago. It is open to students from across the university and has operated in Semester 2 in 2016 and 2017. If you are an Otago staff member and would like to learn more, please contact Hunter.

Beyond teaching and research, Hunter publishes his own reflections on language, economics, systems in general, and higher education at his blog, A Mind on Display. The blog hosts more serious thoughts than a Facebook post or personal blog, but less serious than an academic publication. The blog is written in the spirit of exchanging ideas and modeling curiosity. Have a read if you want to know the ideas running around his cortex these days.

Research Interests

Hunter is fascinated by the patterns underlying facts — facts of language and beyond. His work is centred within psycholinguistics in that he usually asks questions about how the mind handles language and answers those questions quantitatively and/or experimentally.  He loves a good data set and a new method of exploring it!  Topics within which he works include syntactic processing, speech perception and production, and experimental pragmatics.  Hunter is convinced that any “ultimate” understanding of language must be cognitive, formal, and social, all three, and explores how those areas can be unified.  He also thinks as often as he can about what university is for, how students learn, and what part linguistics can play in that.

Current Projects

Work extends across several areas including:

  • Identifying the relationships between writing, student background, psychometric abilities, and academic skills that contribute to having a successful time at university.
  • Matching students to experiences that meet their skill needs and goals in life.
  • Maintaining and demonstrating social relationships through language, often with co-author Dr. Jeewon Hahn of Pukyong National University, South Korea.
  • Adaptation to novel speech patterns over time. This could cover syntax, phonology, pragmatics, or multimodal interaction.
  • Studying how language processing over time becomes stable language structures.
  • Using category theory, the subfield of mathematics, to describe linguistics, particularly phonological patterns.


Postgraduate Supervision

Hunter is keen to work with students with projects that reinforce the direction of the lab.  Anything that looks at language over time would be apt.  The timescale might be milliseconds, such as for lexical recognition, or decades such as for grammaticalisation or language emergence.  In fact, it is processes which look similar over different timescales that are the most fascinating.  Hunter would be particularly keen to work with students with backgrounds that complement his, such as economics (matching algorithms), education (the nature of university), and mathematics (category theory, graph theory, more).  If a student would like to jump directly into one of the current projects, please feel free to contact him to see where the research is.

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Publications

Cop, M., & Hatfield, H. (2017). An athletes [sic] performance: Can a possessive apostrophe predict success? English Today, 33(3), 39-45. doi: 10.1017/s026607841600064x

Hatfield, H. & Cop, M. (2017, March). Exploring the relationship between high school background, writing skills, and first-year marks at university. Department of English and Linguistics, University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand. [Department Seminar].

Cop, M., & Hatfield, H. (2016). Which grammatical errors do first-year university students make and do those errors matter? A focusing inquiry. New Zealand Journal of Teachers' Work, 31(1), 22-38.

Hatfield, H., & Artos, T. (2016). The locus of processing for object relative clauses and the impact of methodology. Language, Cognition & Neuroscience, 31(2), 190-195. doi: 10.1080/23273798.2015.1095936

Hatfield, H. (2016). Self-guided reading: Touch-based measures of syntactic processing. Journal of Psycholinguistic Research, 45(1), 121-141. doi: 10.1007/s10936-014-9334-2

Working Paper; Discussion Paper; Technical Report

Hatfield, H. (2007). The biological endowment for language and arguments from the poverty of the stimulus [Working Papers in Linguistics: Vol. 38(6)]. Honolulu, HI: Department of Linguistics, University of Hawai‘i at Mânoa.

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Other Research Output

Hatfield, H. & Cop, M. (2017, March). Exploring the relationship between high school background, writing skills, and first-year marks at university. Department of English and Linguistics, University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand. [Department Seminar].

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Journal - Research Article

Cop, M., & Hatfield, H. (2017). An athletes [sic] performance: Can a possessive apostrophe predict success? English Today, 33(3), 39-45. doi: 10.1017/s026607841600064x

Cop, M., & Hatfield, H. (2016). Which grammatical errors do first-year university students make and do those errors matter? A focusing inquiry. New Zealand Journal of Teachers' Work, 31(1), 22-38.

Hatfield, H. (2016). Self-guided reading: Touch-based measures of syntactic processing. Journal of Psycholinguistic Research, 45(1), 121-141. doi: 10.1007/s10936-014-9334-2

Hatfield, H., & Artos, T. (2016). The locus of processing for object relative clauses and the impact of methodology. Language, Cognition & Neuroscience, 31(2), 190-195. doi: 10.1080/23273798.2015.1095936

Hatfield, H. (2015). Can an entire paper be project-based group work? Te Reo, 58, 95-113.

Hatfield, H., & Hahn, J.-W. (2014). The face of others: Triadic and dyadic interactions in Korea and the United States. Journal of Politeness Research, 10(2), 221-245. doi: 10.1515/pr-2014-0010

Hahn, J.-W., & Hatfield, H. (2011). Group face in Korea and the United States: Taking responsibility for the individual and the group. Multilingua, 30(1), 25-70. doi: 10.1515/mult.2011.003

Hatfield, H., & Hahn, J.-W. (2011). What Korean apologies require of politeness theory. Journal of Pragmatics, 43(5), 1303-1317. doi: 10.1016/j.pragma.2010.10.028

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Conference Contribution - Poster Presentation (not in published proceedings)

Hahn, J.-W., & Hatfield, H. (2009, July). Variation in apology use through studying group face. Poster session presented at the 11th International Pragmatics Conference, Melbourne, Australia.

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Conference Contribution - Verbal presentation and other Conference outputs

Hatfield, H., & Hahn, J. (2016, November). Translating rudeness across languages: An argument in English and Korean. Verbal presentation at the Linguistics Society of New Zealand Annual Conference: Doing and Applying Linguistics in a Globalised World, Wellington, New Zealand.

Holmes, K., Kuepper, M.-C., Monaghan, K., Orchard, S., & Hatfield, H. (2015, December). Adaptation to sound variation over minutes and years. Verbal presentation at the Linguistic Society of New Zealand Conference, Dunedin, New Zealand.

Hatfield, H. (2015, December). Metrical stress theory in a selection phonology. Verbal presentation at the Linguistic Society of New Zealand Conference, Dunedin, New Zealand.

Hatfield, H., & Artos, T. (2014, January). Self-guided reading and gesture tracking for investigation of syntactic ambiguity. Verbal presentation at the 88th Linguistic Society of America (LSA) Annual Meeting, Minneapolis, USA.

Hatfield, H. (2011, July). Face creation and profiling cultural knowledge. Verbal presentation at the Face Symposium, Huddersfield, UK.

Hatfield, H. (2011, November). Attention and time in statistical learning. Verbal presentation at the 19th Linguistics Society of New Zealand Biennial Conference, Wellington, New Zealand.

Hatfield, H., & Hahn, J.-W. (2009, July). Implications of Korean apology use for face theory. Verbal presentation at the 11th International Pragmatics Conference, Melbourne, Australia.

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Awarded Doctoral Degree

Hatfield, H. B. (2010). Temporal expectancy and the experience of statistics in language processing (PhD). University of Hawai'i, Mānoa, Hawai'i. 155p.

More publications...