Curriculum Vitae

On this page:


Employment and Professional Honors


Research Grants

Professional Service

Professional Memberships


vitaevitaevitaevitaevitaevitaevitaevitaevitaevitaevitaevitaevitaevitaevitaevitae vitaevitaevitaevitae




Ph.D., University of Michigan, Linguistics


"A Sociophonetic Analysis of Jamaican Vowels."  Co-chairs: Patrice Speeter Beddor, A. Lesley Milroy.  Dissertation nominated for Horace H. Rackham Distinguished Dissertation Award.

B.A., Houghton College, NY


Communication, Creative Writing, Spanish minor.  Summa cum laude.


Areas of specialization: Sociolinguistics (social network theory, phonological variation, language ideology, language attitudes), Acoustic phonetics (spectral and temporal characteristics of vowels), Creole linguistics (Jamaican Creole phonetics and phonology)


Employment and Professional Honors

Howard and Frances Nostrand Endowed Professor of Language and Cultural Competence.


Associate Professor, University of Washington


Director, Sociolinguistics Laboratory, University of Washington.


Assistant Professor, University of Washington, Department of Linguistics


Visiting Research Fellow, University of the West Indies, Mona, Kingston, Jamaica


Affiliate Professor, iLabs (formerly Center for Mind, Brain and Learning), University of Washington


Faculty Mentor Award, Ronald E. McNair Program, University of Washington


Editorial Assistant, Journal of Phonetics


Research Assistant, NSF Grant to Dr. P. S. Beddor:  cross-linguistic phonetic study of coarticulation in speakers of English and Shona, U of Michigan


Selected Publications

Book Chapters


with M. di Paolo and M. Yaeger-Dror. “Analyzing Vowels”, ch. 8.  In Marianna di Paolo and Malcah Yaeger Dror. Sociophonetics: A Student's Guide.   London: Routledge.


“Growing up with two ‘Black Languages’:  kinship and attitudes toward Jamaican Creole and African-American English”. In Lanehart, S. (ed.) African American Women’s Language Boston: Cambridge UP, pp. 127-140.


“My Teacher Says...: Linguistic Competence and the Anglophone Creole Speaking Student.”  In Denham, K. and Lobeck, A. (eds.)  Language in the Schools: Integrating linguistic knowledge into K-12 teaching.  Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum. pp55-70


Articles in Peer Reviewed Journals


Scanlon, M. and Wassink, A. B.

“Using Acoustic Trajectory Information in Studies of Merger”, Penn Working Papers in Linguistics


Scanlon, M. and Wassink A. B.

“African American English in Urban Seattle: accommodation and intra-speaker variation in the Pacific Northwest” American Speech 85(2), pp 205-224


MacLeod, A.N., Stoel-Gammon, C., and Wassink, A. B.

“Production of high vowels in Canadian English and Canadian French: a comparison of early bilingual and monolingual speakers.Journal of Phonetics, 37(4), pp 374-387


Franklin, A., Stoel-Gammon, C & Wassink, A. B.

“Acoustic quantification of /i/-/I/ overlap in children 21 to 33 months”, International Journal of Speech-Language Pathology 10(5), pp1-14


Wassink, A. B., Wright, R. A. and Franklin, A.

“Intraspeaker variability in vowel production: an investigation of motherese, hyperspeech, and Lombard speech in Jamaican speakers,” Journal of Phonetics 35(3), pp 363-379


Wassink, A.B.

“A geometric representation of spectral and temporal vowel features: Quantification of vowel overlap in three varieties,” Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 119(4), pp 2334-2350


Wassink, A. B. and Dyer, J.

“Language Ideology and the Transmission of Phonological Change,” Journal of English Linguistics, 32(1), pp1-16


Wassink, A. B. and Curzan, A.

“Addressing Ideologies Around African American English,” Journal of English Linguistics, 32(3), pp 171-185


Wassink, A. B.

“Theme and Variation in Jamaican Vowels,” Language Variation and Change, 13(2), pp 135-159


Dyer, J. and Wassink, A. B.

“Taakin’ Braad and Talking Broad: the changing indexicality of phonological variants,” Texas Linguistic Forum 44(2). Austin: UT Austin, pp288-301


Beckford Wassink, A.

“Historic Low Prestige and Seeds of Change:  attitudes toward Jamaican Creole,” Language in Society, 28(1), pp57-92

Research Grants


Dialect Evolution and Ongoing Variable Linguistic Input: Production and Perception of the English spoken in the Pacific Northwest”. Role: principal investigator.


“Dialect Evolution and Ongoing Variable Linguistic Input: English in the Pacific Northwest 200 years after Lewis and Clark”, National Science Foundation. Role: principal investigator.


“How strict is the “mother tongue”?  Using Dialects to Probe Early Speech Perception and Word Recognition”. Australian Research Council/National Institute of the Humanities Research Grant (Drs. Catherine Best and Christine Kitamura, co-principal investigators). Role: consultant.


Curriculum Development Award, African Studies Minor, University of Washington.  LING455: Areal Linguistics—Pidgin and Creole languages to become part of the minor (Principal Investigator)


Royalty Research Fund, University of Washington. “Spectral Overlap Assessment Metric: vowel analysis and 3-D graphical representation” (Principal Investigator). Software development.  Link:


Center for Mind, Brain and Learning, University of Washington (now i-Labs). “Intraspeaker variability in Motherese, Hyperspeech and the Lombard Reflex” (Co-Principal Investigator with Richard Wright, Department of Linguistics)


Junior Faculty Development Grant, University of Washington. Investigation of intra-speaker variability in Jamaican Creole.  For field research in Jamaica (Principal Investigator)


Curriculum Development Grant, University of Washington. (with Julia Herschensohn, Karen Zagona, and Richard Wright) Developed multimedia curriculum, interactive problem sets, and website materials for introductory linguistics courses LING100, LING200


Faculty Fellows Undergraduate Research Assistantship Award, University of Washington. Intrinsic f0 in Jamaican Creole (Principal Investigator) Conducted research into the role of f0 differences in Jamaican vocalic contrast


Allen Endowment Award, University of Washington. Grant to supplement the holdings of the Sociolinguistics laboratory with electronic corpora.

Professional Service


Advisory Panel for Linguistics, National Science Foundation

Member, Working group to Draft Charter on Language Policy and Language Rights in the Creole Speaking Caribbean, "Creole and International Languages in the Education - Out of school issues"

Technical Advisory Committee. Linguistic Society of America

Mentoring Program Steering Committee.  Committee for Ethnic Diversity in Linguistics, Linguistic Society of America

Journal Reviewer:

Journal of Phonetics, Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, Journal of the International Phonetic Association, Journal of English Linguistics, Journal of Pidgin and Creole Languages, Phonology

Abstract Reviewer:

New Ways of Variation, Symposium on the History of the English Language, Western Conference on Linguistics


Breath of Life Workshop, University of Washington.  (Co-Organizer with Alice Taff, University of Alaska, Fairbanks) Week-long series of sessions aimed to assist individuals, educators and linguistics professionals access the holdings of the University of Washington Libraries relevant to projects on revitalization of Native American languages.

Language/culture/power colloquium series, University of Washington.  Co-Organizer with Laada Bilaniuk, Department of Anthropology.  Quarter-long series of talks bringing speakers from both within and outside UW to talk on current research into issues of language, culture and identity politics. Funded by the Arts and Sciences Exchange Program and the Simpson Center for the Humanities.

Professional Memberships

West Coast Dialect Group, Acoustical Society of America, Linguistic Society of America, Society of Pidgin and Creole Linguistics, Committee of Linguists of African descent, Best Practices in Sociophonetics

 (latest revision 9/2012)