Ellen's research focuses on language comprehension, and she has a particular interest in the role of prediction in sentence processing. She received her BS in Psychology from Michigan State University, where she worked with Fernanda Ferreira, and her PhD in Linguistics from the University of Maryland, where she worked with Colin Phillips and David Poeppel. In her graduate work she used behavioral and neuroimaging measures to examine how predictive contextual information facilitates processing, particularly in cases that are associated with N400 effects in ERP. From a methodological perspective, Ellen is especially interested in the possibility of more directly combining data from EEG, MEG, and fMRI. As a post-doctoral research fellow, she worked with Dr. Kuperberg, Dr. Holcomb, and Dr. Matti Hamalainen (MGH) on several projects that integrated these techniques in examining language processing both in healthy adults and in populations with disorders such as dyslexia and schizophrenia.
- Phillips, C., Wagers, M., & Lau, E. (submitted). Grammatical Illusions and Selective Fallibility in Real-Time Language Comprehension. Language & Linguistics Compass.
- Lau, E., Almeida, D., Hines, P., & Poeppel, D. (in press). A lexical basis for N400 context effects: Evidence from MEG. Brain and Language.
- Wagers, M., Lau, E.F., & Phillips, C. (in press). Agreement attraction in comprehension: representations and processes. Journal of Memory and Language.
- Lau, E.F., Poeppel, D., & Phillips, C. (2008). A cortical network for semantics: (de)constructing the N400. Nature Reviews Neuroscience.
- Lau, E.F., Rozanova, K., & Phillips, C. (2007). Syntactic prediction and lexical surface frequency effects in sentence processing. University of Maryland Working Papers in Linguistics, 16, 163-200.
- Kazanina, N., Lau, E.F., Lieberman, M., Phillips, C., & Yoshida, M. (2007). Effect of syntactic constraints on long-distance dependency formation in backwards anaphora processing. Journal of Memory and Language, 56, 384-409.
- Lau, E. F., Stroud, C., Plesch, S., & Phillips, C. (2006). The role of prediction in rapid syntactic analysis. Brain and Language, 98, 74-88.
- Lau, E. F. & Ferreira, F. (2005). Lingering effects of disfluent material on the comprehension of garden path sentences. Language and Cognitive Processes, 633-666.
- Resnik, P., Elkiss, A., Lau, E., & Taylor, H. (2005). The Web in Theoretical Linguistics Research: Two Case Studies Using the Linguist's Search Engine. Proceedings of the 31st Meeting of the Berkeley Linguistics Society, February 2005, 265-276.
- Ferreira, F., Lau, E. F., & Bailey, K. G. D. (2004). Disfluencies, Language Comprehension, and Tree Adjoining Grammars. Cognitive Science, 28(5), 721-749.
- Phillips, C. & Lau, E. F. (2004). Foundational Issues (review article for R. Jackendoff's Foundations of Language). Journal of Linguistics, 40, 571-591.