Dr Baker-Kukona is a cognitive psychologist. He joined De Montfort University in 2014, following a postdoc at the University of Dundee and PhD at the University of Connecticut. His research focuses on the psychology of language.
Language and cognition
Dr Baker-Kukona’s research investigates the moment-by-moment cognitive processes that support real-time language comprehension. Much of his research uses eye tracking: where we look when we process (spoken) words and sentences can reveal both how we comprehend language in real time and relate this information to the world around us. One aspect of comprehension Dr Baker-Kukona is interested in concerns spatial language: how do we learn and make sense of words and sentences that refer to spatial locations and events (e.g., Kamide, Lindsay, Scheepers, & Kukona, 2016; Kukona, Altmann, & Kamide, 2014)? Another aspect of comprehension he is interested in concerns prediction: how much thinking ahead do we do during language processing, and what do our predictions tell us about the language system (e.g., Kukona, Cho, Magnuson, & Tabor, 2014; Kukona, Fang, Aicher, Chen, & Magnuson, 2011)?
Language comprehension involves a complex array of processes and skills, and comprehenders show tremendous individual differences in language performance. Dr Baker-Kukona is interested in understanding how characteristics such as memory capacity, processing speed and vocabulary size relate to real-time comprehension processes (e.g., Magnuson, et al., 2011; Van Dyke, Johns, & Kukona, 2014).