Heritage Language Corpora: Polinsky Language Sciences Lab

The Polinsky Language Sciences Lab is a linguistics lab that examines questions of language structure and its effect on the ways in which people use and process language in real time. One of our primary areas of focus is the study of heritage speakers--those who grew up hearing or speaking a particular language but who are now more fluent in a different, societally dominant language. Heritage languages are important because they provide new insights into processes of linguistic development, thus increasing our understanding of the human capacity to maintain and acquire language.

We are seeking undergraduate RAs who will assist us with the processing of recorded interviews with heritage speakers of Spanish and Russian. The RAs will work with Lab members to transcribe and translate these interviews, in preparation for inclusion in the Lab’s corpora of spoken heritage languages. Once published, their work will be acknowledged on Dataverse, which counts as an academic publication.


  • Ability to devote up to 10 hours/week on Lab matters, depending on Lab needs. Hours are flexible.
  • Attendance at lab meetings (once a week, Wednesdays 5:15-7:00pm)
  • Good command of Spanish or Russian.

To apply, please send your resume and cover letter to Professor Maria Polinsky at polinsky@fas.harvard.edu.