Thomas St. Pierre

4019 CCT · Mississauga, ON L5L 6A2 · (905) 569-4643 · thomas.stpierre@utoronto.ca

I received my PhD in Linguistics at the University at Buffalo, investigating adaption to grammatical and lexical errors in non-native speech. I've taught Linguistics and German for the UB Linguistics department, as well as ESL courses in the Intensive English Institute at Ball State University and the American Language Program at Columbia University. I am currently a postdoctoral fellow in Elizabeth Johnson's Child Language and Speech Studies Lab, investigating social factors that influence children's perception and evaluation of speech.


Research

Summary

I’m interested in the relationship between language processing and listener’s evaluations/expectations of speakers, focusing primarily on non-native speech. For my dissertation, I examined whether listeners adapt to consistent errors in non-native speech—e.g., consistent errors in object naming (e.g., calling a set of headphones 'speakers'), subject verb agreement with pluralia tantum nouns (e.g., 'The glasses *is'), etc.—and to what extent this learning gets extended to other speakers.

Recently I've been investigating similar phenomena in children, exploring the influence of certain linguistic characteristics (e.g., ungrammaticality, accent, etc.) on children’s evaluations of speech, as reflected in demonstrated trust towards non-native speakers, friendship preferences, etc.

Selected Presentations

St. Pierre, T., Nur, S., & Johnson, E. K. (2019, November). Do toddlers use prepositions to learn novel words? Poster presented at the 2019 Annual Meeting of the Psychonomic Society, Montreal, QC.

St. Pierre, T., & Koenig, J.-P. (2019, September). Generalizing L2 lexical errors to L1 speakers. Talk presented at PsyLinCS UTM Workshop, Mississauga, ON.

St. Pierre, T., & Koenig, J.-P. (2019, March). The Effect of Foreign Bias on Processing L2 English Speech. Poster presented at the 32nd Annual CUNY Sentence Processing Conference, Boulder, CO.

St. Pierre, T., & Koenig, J.-P. (2019, March). Recent exposure to errors from L2 speakers affects processing of L1 speech. Talk presented at the 2nd Annual Buffalo-Toronto Workshop, Toronto, ON.

St. Pierre, T., & Koenig, J.-P. (2018, September). Learning consistent gender errors in non-native speech. Poster presented at the Architectures and Mechanisms for Language Processing (AMLaP), Berlin, Germany.

St. Pierre, T., & Koenig, J.-P. (2018, April). Adapting to errors in L2 speech. Talk presented at the 1st Annual Buffalo-Toronto Workshop, Buffalo, NY.

St. Pierre, T., & Koenig, J.-P. (2018, March). Broccoli or *cauliflower? Adaptation to L2 lexical errors. Poster presented at the 31st Annual CUNY Sentence Processing Conference, Davis, CA.

St. Pierre, T., & Koenig, J.-P. (2018, March). Where *is the jeans? Adapting to L2 grammatical errors. Poster presented at the 31st Annual CUNY Sentence Processing Conference, Davis, CA.

St. Pierre, T. (2015, June). Do speakers use consistent L2 gender errors to anticipate upcoming nouns?. Talk presented at the Forschungskolloquium (research colloquium), Cologne, Germany.


Teaching

UB Curriculum, University at Buffalo
  • UBC 399: UB Capstone
Department of Linguistics, University at Buffalo
  • LIN 205: Intro to Linguistic Analysis
  • LIN 315: Language In Its Social Setting
  • GER 101: Beginning German 1
  • GER 102: Beginning German 2
American Language Program, Columbia University
  • Level 3
  • Level 4
  • Level 5
  • Level 6
Intensive English Institute, Ball State University
  • ENIEI 111: Level 1 Writing
  • ENIEI 121: Level 2 Writing
  • ENIEI 131: Level 3 Writing
  • ENIEI 132: Level 3 Grammar
  • ENIEI 141: Level 4 Writing
  • ENIEI 142: Level 4 Grammar
  • ENIEI 152: Level 5 Grammar
  • ENIEI 161: Level 6 Writing

CV

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Interests

I like hiking and I like taking pictures. Here are some pictures taken while hiking.