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Recent projects include co-directing the Oklahoma Breath of Life Workshop from 2011 to 2014, a collaboration with the Chickasaw Language Revitalization Program, and training in various venues focused on Native Americans and other citizen scientists.
Research methods in many projects draw on participatory and community-based research approaches. Fitzgerald served as the Director of Co Lang 2014, the Institute on Collaborative Research, the fourth iteration to date of this international training venue for language documentation and revitalization, which creates the next generation of scholars and language activists documenting and revitalizing endangered and minority languages worldwide.
Strongly committed to public outreach, she is engaged in advocating for endangered language research and science in various publication venues, as well as developing social media campaigns and innovative public programming such as a Native American languages film festival and an Endangered Languages Week.
There is active involvement and collaboration among our undergraduate students, graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, visitors and faculty in our many Ling grad student Anne Therese Frederiksen has accepted a Chancellor's Postdoctoral Fellowship at UC Irvine, to work with Judith Kroll on pronoun processing in bimodal bilinguals. Our graduate student Tory Sampson has been awarded a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship for 2019-2022 to pursue her project on "Pronominal Acquisition of ASL in Deaf Children".
This project will explore pronoun acquisition in signing deaf children and analyze how they distinguish between deictic and pronominal pointing in ASL.
Her expertise includes phonology (especially prosody and the verbal arts), morphology, Native American languages, and language documentation and revitalization, with much of her recent work funded by the National Science Foundation, and various other grants.
Her work with Native American tribes in documenting and revitalizing their languages is now in its third decade.
Cumulatively, these projects have brought together some 60 researchers from around the world to date collecting data and jointly advancing analyses.
I also founded the Semantic Typology Lab at the University at Buffalo, which has been a forum and incubator for student and faculty research since 2008.
I have conducted extensive research on the semantic typology of representations of space, time, events, and causality and on the Linguistic Relativity Hypothesis, according to which language-specificity in semantics may be a shaping factor in culture-specificity in nonverbal cognition.
Since 2007, I have been directing three large-scale collaborative research projects on these topics with the support of the National Science Foundation.