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Maja Milicevic Petrovic

Associate Professor

Department of Interpreting and Translation

Academic discipline: L-LIN/01 Historical and General Linguistics


Keywords: morphosyntax, second language acquisition, translation, computer-mediated communication, corpus linguistics, research methods in linguistics

My main research focus is on morphosyntax, especially in bilingual contexts. Other research areas include linguistic properties of computer-mediated communication, creation of corpora and empirical research methods in linguistics.

I am interested in partially grammaticalised phenomena in which the choice among the available options depends on semantic or discourse factors. Among such phenomena, I have worked on reflexives and reciprocals (where a choice can be made between forms marked by light and heavy markers such as clitics and stressed pronouns), possessives (possessive adjectives vs. possessive dative), and anaphora resolution (for null and overt pronominal subjects).

Second language acquisition
A central domain of my research is second language (L2) acquisition. I focus on its linguistic aspects, looking in particular at partially grammaticalised phenomena and studying factors that contribute to the acquisition process, such as transfer from the native language (L1) and properties of the input. I work on Italian, Serbian and English. Most of my work so far has been dedicated to reflexives and reciprocals and to anaphora resolution.

I study the linguistic properties of translated texts, as well as the internal linguistic system of translators. I am interested in finding out about the differences between translated texts and original (non-translated) production in the same language, and about the similarities between the linguistic system of translators and those of L2 learners and L1 attriters. Adopting this perspective, I have studied anaphora resolution and lexical and syntactic simplification.

Computer-mediated communication
Together with a group of colleagues, I have been exploring the linguistic properties of tweets written in Serbian, Croatian and Slovene. We focus on the level of tweet (non-)standardness, on non-standard orthographic and morphological phenomena, and on the geographic distribution of different linguistic features.

Corpus linguistics
In addition to using corpus-based research methods, I have participated in the creation of a multimodal corpus of translated and interpreted texts and of two Twitter corpora (see more in the CV section). I am also interested in linguistic annotation.

Research methods in linguistics
I am a proponent of empirical research in linguistics, based on data collected in experimental studies or through the use of corpora. I have always connected this line of research to my teaching activities, participating in projects and publishing different types of metaerials dedicated to quantitative research methods (see more in the CV section).

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