Photos: As a mentor for the Research Intensive Summer Experience (RISE) program through the Big 10 Academic Alliance and Project SUPER to support women in research

Research Interests

Broad: First and Second Language Acquisition, Bilingualism, Bilingual Education

Narrow: Bilingual language acquisition, heritage language development, syntax, semantics, pragmatics and their interaction, immersion and two-way bilingual education, second language pedagogy, typical and atypical development

My research reflects an interest in exploring issues in bilingualism with direct implications for teachers in the classroom and for bilingual communities in the U.S. I focus on bilingual language acquisition in children who are both heritage speakers and second language (L2) learners, and how a child’s two languages interact and change over the course of development. Through a variety of quantitative experimental methods, I explore the impact of external factors including bilingual education, age of acquisition, quality and quantity of input and sociolinguistic background. The primary purpose of my research program is to strengthen theoretical and empirical connections so that the knowledge gained can become directly accessible to a wider audience.


Goldin, M., López, J., Hur, E. (submitted). How frequent are these verbs? An exploration of the role of lexical frequency in children’s acquisition of verb morphology at different ages of acquisition.

López-Otero, J, Hur, E., Goldin, M. (submitted). Syntactic optionality in Heritage Spanish: How patterns of exposure and use affect clitic climbing.

Sánchez, L., Goldin, M., Hur, E., Jimenez, A., López-Otero, J., Markovits, J., Thane, P., Austin, J. (submitted). Input and the development of pragmatic knowledge in heritage bilingual children: Acceptance of null and overt subjects in Spanish and English.

Goldin, M. (2021). Language activation in dual language schools: the development of subject-verb agreement in the English and Spanish of heritage speaker children. International Journal of Bilingual Education and Bilingualism, 1-22.

Goldin, M., Syrett, K., Sánchez, L. (2021). Perspective-taking with deictic motion verbs in Spanish heritage child speakers: Context-dependent cross-linguistic influence at the lexical level. Frontiers in Psychology, 12.

Goldin, M. (2020). Acquisition of null subjects in heritage and L2 children. In Colomina-Almiñana, J. & S. Sessarego (Eds.). Patterns in Spanish: Structure, Context and Development. Amsterdam/Philadelphia: John Benjamins.

Goldin, M. (2020). An exploratory study of the effect of Spanish immersion education on the acquisition of null subjects in child heritage speakers. Languages, 5, 18, 1-24.

Marull, C. & Goldin, M. (2018). The relationship between sensitivity to morphosyntactic violations and morphosyntactic anticipation in L2 comprehension. Proceedings of the 42nd annual Boston University Conference on Language Development. Somerville, MA: Cascadilla Press.

Goldin, M. (2005). Dance anthropology: Spain in the flamenco trilogy of Carlos Saura and Antonio Gades.  Hispanic Culture Review, 11, 83-100.

Works in Progress

López-Otero, J. and Goldin, M. (in preparation). The role of age of acquisition in L2 Spanish imperatives: Insights from children and adults.

Goldin, M. (in preparation). “How old is too old? The effect of age of acquisition on verb morphology in young child L2 learners.”

Thane, P., Markovits, J., Jimenez, A., López, J., Hur, E., Goldin, M., Austin, J. (in preparation). Assessing the need for bilingual assessments.

Goldin, M. (in preparation). Parents’ language attitudes in a dual language school.

Goldin, M. (data collected). Heritage language development in early childhood: A longitudinal study.

Goldin, M. (data collected). The emergence of passives in bilingual children.