First ever winter school on experimental semantic fieldwork on African languages

Studierende im Klassenraum
Bild: Cornelia Ebert
Quelle: Cornelia Ebert

In cooperation with the Linguistics Department of the University of Ghana at Legon and colleagues from Germany and abroad (Bochum, Berlin, Edinburgh, Boston), the Semantics Group of the Linguistic Department is holding a 2-week graduate school from January 9 to January 20, 2023 at the University of Ghana at Legon (Accra). The focus is on 'Beyond the WEIRD-boundary: Theoretical and experimental approaches to African semantics'.

The school is partly financially supported by the Ko-UP funding program at the Universität Potsdam for the fostering of international cooperation in teaching, and it is set up in a hybrid manner with on-site participation on the Legon Campus in Accra (6 students from Potsdam & 12 students from Legon) and zoom-screening for Potsdam students at home.The central objective of the school is to overcome the WEIRD boundary in experimental semantics. This refers to the fact that there is almost no theory-based quantitative experimental research on the semantics of African languages, same as in cognition and psychology research. As experimental research is for the most part focused on members of the WEIRD-population (Western, Educated, Industrialized, Rich, Democratic); cf. Heinrich et al. (2010), the proposed graduate school is a first step at filling this research gap with respect to African linguistic semantics. The concrete goals of the summer school consist in (i.) the transfer of theoretical knowledge and experimental techniques in semantic research; and (ii.) in laying the basis for a joint advanced module/program in experimental semantics on non-WEIRD languages at UG Legon & UP, and (iii.) in assessing the possibilities for transcontinental and cross-cultural hybrid teaching.Faculty on-site: Reginald Duah (Legon), Abudal-Razak Sulemana (Legon), Sampson Korsah (Capecoast), Malte Zimmermann (UP), Nadine Bade (UP), Natalia Boll-Avetysian (UP), Cornelia Ebert (Frankfurt/M.); Faculty on-zoom: Augustina Owusu (Boston), Abigail Bimpeh (LZAS Berlin), Mira Grubic (UP), Anne Mucha (Edinburgh), Agata Renans (Bochum)



Quelle: Cornelia Ebert


Congratulations to our student Yannic Bracke, who received the GSCL prize for the best Computational Linguistics BSc thesis (in German-speaking countries) in 2020/21. The thesis is called "Automatic text classification with imbalanced data" and was supervised by Prof. Manfred Stede.