Dr Alissa Melinger


Psychology, School of Social Sciences

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+44 (0)1382 384610


Scrymgeour Building


I am a graduate of the Department of Linguistics and the Center for Cognitive Science at the University at Buffalo, State University of New York. My dissertation was an experimental study of the representation of morphological information in the mental lexicon. After completing my degree, I took up a three year post-doctoral position working with Willem Levelt, from the Production Group, and Sotaro Kita, in the Gesture Project, at the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics in the Netherlands. I also spent three years as a Post-doctoral researcher and lecturer in Psycholinguistics at Saarland University in Germany working with Matthew Crocker. I joined the School of Psychology at the University of Dundee in 2006.


My research combines linguistic theory, psychological models, and experimental methodology into a line of research that investigates what speakers know about words. Specifically, I conduct research on the nature and organization of lexical representations, focusing more recently grammatical features in speech production (e.g., subcategorization frames, mass/count features, case features, etc) and the nature of different types of semantic relations (e.g., a comparison of effects arising from the relationship between dog and horse and the relationship between horse and saddle). I've developed novel variants of well-known experimental paradigms such as picture-word interference and syntactic priming to investigate lexical representations and processes. I developed a single word variant of traditional syntactic priming paradigms to investigate the mechanisms underlying word order priming effects. Rasha Abdel Rahman and I also developed a multiple word variant of picture-word interference paradigm to investigate the relationships between different types of distractor effects.

View full research profile and publications


  • Individual Differences and Personality (Level 1)
  • Language (Level 3)
  • Gesture, Cognition, and Communication (Level 4 and Msc)