Accessibility statement

Helen Goodluck
Emeritus Professor



Helen Goodluck is a psycholinguist with interests in first and second language acquisition, language in special populations, and adult sentence processing.


  • University of Lancaster
    BA in English (1970)
    Research Fellow, Computer Archive of Modern English Texts (1970-1971)
  • Nis University, Yugoslavia
    British council Lector in English (1971-1972)
  • Brown University
    MA in Linguistics (1973-1974)
  • University of Massachusetts, Amherst
    PhD in Linguistics (1974-1978)
  • University of Wisconsin Madison
    Lecturer, Departments of English and Linguistics (1978-1979)
  • Free University Berlin
    Hochschulassistentin in Linguistics (1979-1980)
  • University of Wisconsin Madison
    Assistant Profession, Departments of English and Linguistics (1980-1986)
  • University of Ottawa
    Visiting/Asssociate/Full Professor, Department of Linguistics (1986-2004)
  • University of York
    Anniversary Professor of Linguistics, Department of Language and Linguistic Science (2004-2014)



Main research interests are in first language acquisition and adult sentence processing.


  • The processing of English and Akan questions
  • Knowledge of complex syntax in persons with Down Syndrome
  • The processing of questions in Serbian by Broca’s aphasics

Research group(s)

  • Syntax and semantics research group
  • Psycholinguistic research group


  • Alice Eriks-Brophy, University of Toronto, Canada
  • Danijela Stojanovic, Carleton University, Canada
  • Kofi Saah, University of Ghana
  • Psycholinguistics Laboratory, University of Belgrade, Yugoslavia


Selected publications

  • 2017 Darinka Andjelković, Helen Goodluck, Maja Savić, Danijela Stojanović and Mile Vuković, 'Serbian-speaking Broca’s aphasics: Some problems for theories of aphasia', Proceedings of the 2016 Formal Approaches to Slavic Linguistics Conference, Michigan Slavic Publishers (13pp.)
  • 2017 Helen Goodluck, Frank Tsiwah and Kofi Saah, 'Island constraints are not the result of sentence processing', Proceedings of the Linguistic Society of America 2, 15: 1-5.
  • 2015 Helen Goodluck, Kofi Saah and Frank Tsiwah 'In Akan, violation of island constraints cannot be reduced to sentence processing', Proceedings of the 2015 conference of the Canadian Linguistics Association (9 pp.)
  • 2015 Linda Coulter and Helen Goodluck 'The processing of simple structures and temporarily ambiguous syntax by deaf readers', The Volta Review, 115, 67-96.
  • 2015 Helen Goodluck Child language acquisition. In Natalie Barber, Louise Cummings and Liz Morrish (eds.) Exploring Language and Linguistics. Cambridge University Press, 299-323.
  • 2014 Helen Goodluck 'How the parser helps and hinders language acquisition' Proceedings of the 2013 Boston University Conference on Language Development, 171-178.
  • 2013 Helen Goodluck and Eytan Zweig (eds.) 'Formal vs. Processing Approaches to Syntactic Phenomena', Special issue of Language and Cognitive Processes, 28, 1-2, 217 pp.
  • 2013 Helen Goodluck and Eytan Zweig 'Introduction, in Formal vs. Processing Approaches to Syntactic Phenomena', 1-8.
  • 2013 Danijela Stojanović, Helen Goodluck, Darinka Andjelković and Maja Savić 'Object relatives can ease processing load', Proceedings of the 2012 Formal Approaches to Slavic Linguistics Conference, Michigan Slavic Publishers, 331-343.
  • 2010 Helen Goodluck 'Object extraction is not subject to Child Relativized Minimality', Lingua 120, 1516-1521.
  • 2010 Helen Goodluck 'First language acquisition', Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Cognitive Science.

Contact details

Helen Goodluck
Emeritus Professor
Department of Language and Linguistic Science