LING-442 Instrumentation and Reproducibility in Linguistics
Spring for 2017-2018
There has been much discussion in recent years over the replicability crisis plaguing the social sciences. Linguistics is by no means immune. As a field we have often taken for granted the validity of our data collection instruments (Gass & Mackey, 2016). Moreover, we have generally not recognized the value of replicability/reproducibility, which is key to making solid, incremental advances needed in linguistics or any other scientific discipline. This course takes on these two related issues with an eye toward improving research practices in the field. Topics to be covered include: approaches to instrument validation; the place and value of replication research; the need for greater transparency; and the relationship between replication and generalizability. Complementary to these more conceptual discussions, the class will involve a variety of hands-on activities designed to foster improved instrumentation and replicability. Class participants will also conduct a replication study and/or a study of instrument validation. Most of the readings will be drawn from second-language research and, to a lesser extent, cognitive psychology; however, students from all backgrounds and interests are welcome.
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