Jill P. Morford

Jill P. Morford

Professor of Linguistics, University of New Mexico


Jill P. Morford investigates language acquisition and processing in the visual modality, including signed languages, written language and Augmentative and Alternative Communication systems. Recently she has turned her attention to the reading patterns of deaf sign-print bilinguals. She is Professor of Linguistics at the University of New Mexico and a member of the Scientific Management Team of the NSF Science of Learning Center on Visual Language and Visual Learning (VL2) based at Gallaudet University.


University of New Mexico, USA


Science of Learning Center on Visual Language and Visual Learning (VL2)

Representative Publications:

  • Morford, J. P., Wilkinson, E., Villwock, A., Piñar, P. & Kroll, J. F. (2011). When deaf signers read English: Do written words activate their sign translations? Cognition, 118 (2), 286-292.
  • Morford, J. P., Staley, J. & Burns, B. (2010). Seeing signs: Language experience and handshape perception. Deaf Studies Digital Journal,
  • Carlson, M., Morford, J. P., Shaffer, B. & Wilcox, P. P. (2010). Educational linguistics of deaf education. In F. M. Hult (Ed.), Directions and Prospects for Educational Linguistics, 99-115. Dordrecht: Springer Verlag.
  • Trudeau, N., Morford, J. P., & Sutton, A. (2010). The role of word order in the interpretation of canonical and non-canonical graphic symbol utterances: A developmental study.Augmentative and Alternative Communication, 26 (2), 1-14.
  • Sutton, A., Trudeau, N., Morford, J., Rios, M. & Poirier, M.-A. (2010). Young children have difficulty constructing and interpreting simple utterances composed of graphic symbols.Journal of Child Language, 37, 1-26.
  • Morford, J. P., Grieve-Smith, A. B., MacFarlane, J., Staley, J. & Waters, G. S. (2008). Effects of language experience on the perception of American Sign Language. Cognition, 109, 41-53.
  • Wilcox, S. & Morford, J. P. (2007). Empirical methods in signed language research. In M. Gonzalez-Marquez, I. Mittelberg, S. Coulson, & M. J. Spivey, (Eds.), Methods in Cognitive Linguistics, 173-202. Amsterdam: Benjamins.
  • Morford, J. P. (2003). Grammatical development in adolescent first language learners.Linguistics, 41:4, 681 – 721.
  • Morford, J. P. (2002). Why does exposure to language matter? In T. Givón & B. Malle (Eds.), The evolution of language from pre-language, pp. 329-341. Amsterdam: Benjamins.
  • Chamberlain, C., Morford, J. P. & Mayberry, R. I. (2000). Language acquisition by eye. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
Jill Morford