How does the mind compute language?
Professor Charles Yang is a linguist who studies language acquisition, variation, and change, natural language processing (NLP).
Some of the fundamental questions that Professor Yang is interested in include:
- How do children learn languages?
- Why do languages change?
- Does language make us smart?
- Can we make computers better at processing language?
Professor Yang believes that human language has a mechanical element that can be studied precisely with mathematical and computational tools. This research is necessarily interdisciplinary, so Prof. Yang collaborates widely with linguists, computer scientists, and psychologists, including ILST faculty Lila Gleitman, Julie Anne Legate, Mitch Marcus, Don Ringe, Kathryn Schuler, John Trueswell, and Lyle Ungar.
He is the author of three books and has won the Linguistic Society of American Leonard Bloomfield Award and a fellowship from the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation.