I am a computational linguist and an assistant professor of Computer Science at Wellesley College.


My research focuses on understanding how context-sensitive meaning is encoded in natural language. I study words whose meanings change depending on who is using them and where they are used.

I build computational models to understand how conversation participants use knowledge about each other's mental states. How do speakers think about their audience when deciding what to say? How do listeners use their knowledge of the speaker when figuring out the meaning of their utterances?

These aspects of language are among the most difficult for artificial intelligence to grasp, because they are situational, grounded, and interactive. In order to develop language technology that interacts with us in a natural way, we need to develop models that can adjust their language based on users' situations and knowledge states.

My dissertation, Shifting the Perspectival Landscape, is now on LingBuzz.

carolyn.anderson AT wellesley.edu


o Computational Modeling
o Semantics and Pragmatics
o Machine Learning
o Psycholinguistics


o May 2022: EASEL lab member Funing Yang successfully defends her honors thesis: An Extraction and Representation Pipeline for Literary Characters

o May 2022: Eliciting Associated Motion Constructions in Two Zapotec Languages accepted to Semantic Fieldwork Methods.

o February 2022: Protagonist-Mediated Perspective presented in the Narration in Context workshop at DGfS 2022.

o January 2022: I was interviewed for a Wellesley spotlight article

o October 2021: I gave a colloqium talk in the Computational Linguistics department at Brandeis

o August 2021: ProSPer accepted to the BlackboxNLP workshop at EMNLP 2021.

o August 2021: TypeWhich accepted to OOPSLA 2021.

o June 2021: (Some) parentheses are focus-sensitive operators accepted to Sinn und Bedeutung 26.