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Internship Field: Linguistics

Major: Human Biology

Host: Universitšt Heidelberg. IBEROAMERIKA-ZENTRUM (IAZ)

Location: Heidelberg

Duration: 2.5 months in summer of 2015


Description: "I worked on multiple projects in the field of psycholinguistics with my immediate supervisor. This was an excellent learning experience because it gave me the opportunity to work on projects in all stages of development and execution.

The first project was in its beginning stages, and my duties included background research and experimental design. The project aimed to research the hypothesized apprehension stage in language processing. The project used transitive vs. intransitive verbs to study this. My job was to first research other studies that looked at this apprehension stage and study their experimental design. I then worked alongside my supervisor to create the experimental design. I was solely responsible for creating the written stimuli we used in the experiment.

The next major project I worked on was a variation on a former study. It required me to collaborate with my supervisor to adjust the parameters of the project to address some concerns over the results raised by his colleagues. My duties included using data and information from the previous experiments to craft a new set of stimuli and to pseudo-randomize experimental lists.

The third major project required creating the actual experiment to be used in connection with an eye-tracker. This required learning to use the related software and machinery in the Eye-Tracking Lab. I later learned to and actually conducted this experiment. I also had minor duties on other projects, including compiling the eye-tracking data for previously conducted projects via the BeGaze software."

Comments: "I honed my research and experimental design skills in addition to learning how to use new and industry-relevant software. The internship was very professionally profitable even though it convinced me to alter my future career path away from psycholinguistic research to educational policy."

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