2014 Arts & Sciences Student Research Awards

The Arts & Sciences Student Research Awards help fund special scholarly activities of significant educational value, not available through regular coursework. Congratulations to this year’s winners! HelgesonKirsten Helgeson, Linguistics (PhD) “The purpose of this activity is to record place names in the endangered Alekano language in and around the area of Goroka, Eastern Highlands Province, Papua New Guinea. Data will be collected and, upon return, made into a map for the Alekano community.” Heston

Tyler Heston, Linguistics (PhD) “The proposed project is a three-week linguistic field trip to East Timor (in island Southeast Asia) to collect data for a description of the sounds of Fataluku, a critically understudied indigenous language spoken there. The project promises benefit to both the scientific field of linguistics and the underprivileged children who speak the language.”

Kavon Hooshiar
, Linguistics (MA) “This project is an initial trip to perform documentary linguistic fieldwork on the Gimi language in the Lufa District of the Eastern Highlands Province of Papua New Guinea. The goals are to begin documentation of Gimi and build relationships with the Gimi speaking community.” Imai

Junko Imai, Second Language Studies (ABD) “The main purpose of this activity is to complete my PhD studies. In my PhD dissertation research, I will explore L2 learners’ learning to write processes in one-on-one counseling sessions, so-called ‘writing conferences’ (WCs), between expert writers (e.g., teachers, tutors) and novice writers (i.e., students). In particular, I will investigate how college L2 learners of English, with experts’ help, gradually take control on their interactional negotiation and writing production as autonomous L2 users of English for academic purposes. If the fund allows, I also hope to report part of findings in a conference I have already been accepted in June 2014.” Rentz

Bradley Rentz, Linguistics (MA) “The project will take place on Sapwuahfik Atoll and Pohnpei Island in Pohnpei State, Federated States of Micronesia. The primary goal of the project is to begin documenting the threatened Ngatik Men’s Creole language spoken on Sapwuahfik by connecting with speakers and making video and audio recordings of the language that will be deposited in the university’s Kaipuleohone archive. The secondary goal is to access the vitality of the language by finding out the number of speakers and their demographics. This project will set the groundwork for continuing long-term language documentation on the atoll. It will also be the basis for my dissertation research.” Smith

Alexander Smith, Linguistics (PhD) “I will be conducting field work in and around the town of Miri, located on the island of Borneo, in the state of Sarawak, Malaysia. The purpose of the field work is to begin documenting the Kenyah languages, which are spoken along the Baram river. A dam is scheduled to be built on the river which threatens the survival of all 20,000 Kenyah speakers in the area.” Tanaka

Nozomi Tanaka, Linguistics (PhD) “I plan to travel to Manila, Philippines over the summer to collect linguistic data from Tagalog-speaking children and adults to study the properties of the Tagalog language as well as how the speakers learn and use the language. The data will be used for several conference publications as well as my doctoral dissertation.”

NicholasTolerNicholas Toler, Linguistics (MA) “This research will be conducted in Kotlik, Alaska during the summer of 2014. The purpose of the research is to introduce myself to the Kotlik community in preparation of eventually carrying out my dissertation on the Norton Sound Kotlik language. In addition I will conduct a survey intended to determine the true number of speakers of this language (estimated at 68 speakers), the geographic and social domains of the language’s use and the community’s goals for a documentation project on the language. Finally, I will begin to gather language data through short elicitation sessions with community members to begin the language documentation of Norton Sound Kotlik in preparation for conducting further fieldwork later.” Uno

Sarah Uno, Linguistics (senior) “Research will take place in the Second Language Acquisition and Bilingualism Lab (SLAB) at UH Mānoa, and at various on-site locations on Maui and Oʻahu for naturalistic speech elicitation. The purpose is to study if Pidgin can be distinguished from Mainstream American English (MAE), based solely on articulatory settings (AS) specific to the Pidgin Language, in the absence of sound.”