24.149, Summer Schools: Universality and Variability: New Insights from Genetics/Michigan, USA

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LINGUIST List: Vol-24-149. Thu Jan 10 2013. ISSN: 1069 - 4875.

Subject: 24.149, Summer Schools: Universality and Variability: New Insights from Genetics/Michigan, USA

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Date: Thu, 10 Jan 2013 11:51:29
From: Sarah Graham [sarah.graham at mpi.nl]
Subject: Universality and Variability: New Insights from Genetics/Michigan, USA

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Universality and Variability: New Insights from Genetics

Host Institution: University of Michigan
Coordinating Institution: Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics
Website: http://genlang2013.weebly.com

Dates: 29-Jun-2013 - 30-Jun-2013
Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA

Focus: The focus of this workshop is on the application of human genetics research to questions about universality and variability in linguistics.
Minimum Education Level: Undergraduate

This two-day workshop hosted by the LSA Summer Institute is an introduction to
the investigation of language from the perspective of human genetics. The
workshop will be accessible to students and researchers from all levels and
academic backgrounds, and no prior knowledge of genetics is required.

Language is in our DNA: our shared genetic endowment lies at the heart of the
universal capacity for language, while the genetic differences between us
contribute to the variability in our linguistic abilities. Tracing the
connections between genes, brains and language will provide fresh insights
into many areas of inquiry within linguistics. For example, how does genetic
variation contribute to individual differences in language acquisition and
use, and to disorders of speech and language? How could genetic factors help
explain the universal constraints and tendencies in language? Have genetic
differences between human populations shaped the diversity we observe in the
world’s languages today? How can studying the DNA of ancient humans and other
species inform the debates on the nature and evolution of our capacity for
language? How is language grounded in the brain and ultimately in the genome?

On day one of this workshop, researchers working at the interface of genetics
and language will give presentations introducing the principles of molecular
genetics, the nature of human genetic similarity and variation, the
state-of-the-art methods employed by genetic research into language, the
exciting discoveries made so far, and the emerging questions and future
research directions.  In addition to providing participants with an overview
of the current state of knowledge regarding the role of specific genes in
language, these presentations aim to equip participants with the core
knowledge to tap into this growing literature, to make a sound evaluation of
the role of genetics in their area of interest, and to identify the potential
to integrate genetic investigations into their work.  Each presentation will
be followed by a question-and-answer session coordinated by a linguistics
researcher, designed to clarify the material covered, to address myths and
misconceptions about genetics, and to stimulate discussion of the
ramifications for linguistics.  On day two, researchers from both genetics and
linguistics will together lead structured discussion sessions, where
participants will be encouraged to put forward their own questions and views
on the application of genetic studies to linguistics research.

Linguistic Field(s): Genetic Classification

Tuition: 0 USD

Registration: 01-Jan-2013 to 21-Jun-2013

Contact Person: Sarah Graham
                Phone: 31243665059
                Email: sarah.graham at mpi.nl

Apply on the web:  http://genlang2013.weebly.com

Registration Instructions:
To register for this workshop please complete the form at the application web
address above.  Registration is free.

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