Seminar für Sprachwissenschaft

Research Apprenticeships

The goal of a research apprenticeship is to convey practical experience in the focal research topics of our institute and to lead students through individual guidance to independent research. Students are expected to work independently and to be self-motivated. Mentors will offer guidance, feedback and advice in regular meetings or other appropriate form.

Below is a list of possible topics offered by various members of our institute. Interested students should contact potential mentors for further information.



Information and Language


Language, Variation & Change, Language Structure


Christian Bentz

Human language is an information encoding device. This apprenticeship aims to

familiarize students with the theory of information and how it relates to research in linguistics.

The RA offers several topics: 1) language variation: information-theoretic accounts of linguistic

diversity, 2) language change: the evolution of information-encoding in human languages, 3) language

structure: investigating the difference between language and other communication systems.

Depending on preferences and skills, these topics can entail detailed literature reviews, (small scale)

corpus building, basic statistical analyses and visualizations with R.



Articulatory Speech Production with PAULE and the VocalTractLab


Language Processing, Language Structure and Language, Variation and Change


Konstantin Sering

Synthesizing speech with an articulatory speech synthesizer and compare it to human articulatory data like EMA data or ultrasound recordings of the midsagital tongue plane gives insights in how humans use their speech system to utter words. The articulatory speech synthesizer VocalTractLab models the tongue and jaw movement and the airflow through the oral and nasal cavity. Students are will learn how to develop a research questions, simulate data with the articulatory speech synthesizer, and how to compare the simulated data to recordings of human data.


title Phonetics, Morphology and the Cognitive Aspects thereof
areas Language Processing, Language Structure and Language, Variation and Change
contact Harald Baayen
  For possible topics or research fields please consult the webpage of the group Quantitative Linguistics.
title Historical Linguistics and Language Evolution
areas Language, Variation & Change, Language Structure
contact Gerhard Jäger

For possible topics or research fields please contact Prof. Dr. Gerhard Jäger.



 Universal Dependencies and computational tools


Language Structure, and Language, Variation and Change, Language Use


 Fabricío Gerardi

Keplerstr. 2, Raum 284, phone number: 07071 2977315

Universal Dependencies (UD) departs from the idea that syntactic structure consists primarily of binary asymmetrical relations. This theory is a good basis for crosslinguistically consistent annotation of typologically diverse languages in a way that supports computational natural language understanding and allows for research in typology, morphology, syntax, and language structure in general. The research apprenticeship may focuses on literature review, maintaining and improving the quality of UD treebanks from the simplest work with data to the development of computational tools.