Hello! Welcome to my academic homepage. Here you'll find some information about my research interests and current projects. I am currently a Ph.D. candidate at the University of California, Santa Cruz, department of Psychology, cognitive area. I work in the spontaneous communication lab with Dr. Jean E. Fox Tree.
I'm interested in how we use language to interact with each other and get things done, whether in the context of day to day chitchat or in specific, goal-oriented collaborative activity. My goal is to further understand meaning making as a social, collaborative activity. Bringing spontaneously produced conversation into the lab can be a little like herding cats, but I always try to use natural dialogue as a starting point for experiments. I'm also interested in the use and coordination of multiple communicative modalities in conversation, such as gesture, prosody, and gaze, all of which play a big role in shaping how words spoken in a particular context become a meaningful part of an interaction. Check out my research page for more information on specific projects that are under way.
Born and raised in Minnesota, I've been slowly making my way West with a stop off in Boulder, CO, before settling in Santa Cruz (so a big thank you is in order to my husband, Nathan, and dog, Mona, for letting me drag them across the country in pursuit of my academic career). Santa Cruz has definitely got its hooks in me pretty good, when I'm not on campus I'm typically at the beach.