Jennifer S. Cole

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Jennifer Sandra Cole is a professor of linguistics at Northwestern University. Her research uses experimental and computational methods to study the sound structure of language.[1] She is General Editor of Laboratory Phonology[2] and a founding member of the Association for Laboratory Phonology.[3]

Her Ph.D. dissertation, Planar Phonology and Morphology, was completed in 1987, under the supervision of Morris Halle, at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Department of Linguistics and Philosophy.[4] In 1991, the study was recognized by Garland Publishing and presented as an Outstanding Dissertation in Linguistics.[5] Cole introduced ranked constraints in formal grammar to model the interaction between morphology and phonology.[6] This was one of the first works in the generative phonology framework to model phonological grammar using constraint ranking, an approach which has been developed in Optimality Theory.[7]

A primary focus of Cole's research is on variation in the phonetic expression of words and the role of prosodic phrasing and prominence in influencing phonetic variation.[8] She applies linguistic models of prosody to research in computer speech recognition.[9]

Cole has carried out field research and authored encyclopedia articles on Sindhi (Indo-Aryan).[10] She served on the Board of Trustees of the American Institute of Pakistan Studies (2006–2009).

Cole is promoting speech and language research in the broader context of interdisciplinary science in her role as Co-Chair of the Biological Intelligence research theme at the Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology, and as the 2015 Chair Elect of Section Z of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).[11] She has served as an elected member of the Executive Council of the Linguistic Society of America (2007–2010).

Personal life[edit]

Jennifer Cole is married to Gul Agha, with whom she has three daughters.


  1. ^ "University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign: Jennifer S. Cole".
  2. ^ "De Gruyter - Linguistics, Communications - Journals - Laboratory Phonology". Retrieved 2010-12-22.
  3. ^ "Association for Laboratory Phonology : Home".
  4. ^ "Planar Phonology and Morphology". Retrieved 2010-12-22.
  5. ^ Cole, Jennifer S. Planar Phonology and Morphology, Outstanding Dissertations in Linguistics. New York: Garland. 1991. ISBN 0-8153-0165-0
  6. ^ Cole, Jennifer (1995), "Eliminating cyclicity as a source of complexity in processing phonology.", in Cole, J.; Morgan, J.; Green (eds.), Linguistics and Computation, Stanford: CSLI, pp. 255–280, ISBN 1-881526-81-X
  7. ^ "Optimality Theory: Constraint Interaction in Generative Grammar" (PDF). Rutgers Optimality Archive. 2004: 3.
  8. ^ Cole, Jennifer; Kim, Heejin; Choi, Hansook; Hasegawa-Johnson, Mark (2007), "Prosodic effects on acoustic cues to stop voicing and place of articulation: Evidence from Radio News speech.", Journal of Phonetics, 35: 180–209, doi:10.1016/j.wocn.2006.03.004
  9. ^ Chen, Ken; Hasegawa-Johnson, Mark; Cohen, Aaron; Borys, Sarah; Kim, S-S.; Cole, Jennifer; Choi, J-Y. (2006), "Prosody dependent speech recognition on Radio News corpus of American English", IEEE Transactions on Speech and Audio Processing, 14 (1): 232–245, doi:10.1109/tsa.2005.853208
  10. ^ Cole, Jennifer (2006), "The Sindhi Language", in Brown, K. (ed.), Encyclopedia of Language and Linguistics, 11 (2 ed.), Oxford: Elsevier, pp. 384–386
  11. ^ "Linguistics and Language Sciences (Z)". 19 June 2013.

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