Department of Linguistics University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

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Dr. Darren Tanner

Assistant Professor; Electrophysiology and Language Processing Lab Director of Linguistics
Assistant Professor of Second Language Acquisition and Teacher Education

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  • Address:
    University of Illinois
    Dept. of Linguistics, MC-168
    707 South Mathews Avenue
    Urbana, IL 61801

    Office: 4043 Foreign Languages Building
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  • Homepage: Visit Website

Research Interests

My research interests lie in sentence processing and psycholinguistics, second language acquisition and bilingualism, and electrophysiological measures of language processing (ERPs). My work primarily investigates grammatical processing and sentence parsing in native and nonnative English speakers, as well as the development of grammatical processing systems in novice second language learners and cross-language interactions in bilingual sentence processing. I am additionally interested in individual differences, both in stable language processing and language development.


  • Ph.D., University of Washington

Current Projects

  • On a Leave of Absence - Spring 2018
  • Publications

    Journal Articles

    • Armstrong, Andrew, Nyssa Z. Bulkes, and Darren Tanner. "Quantificational cues modulate the processing of English subject-verb agreement by native Chinese speakers: An ERP study." Studies in Second Language Acquisition (2018):
    • Tanner, Darren, Sarah Grey, and Janet van Hell. "Dissociating retrieval interference and reanalysis in the P600 during sentence comprehension." Psychophysiology 54 (2017): 248-259.
    • Bulkes, Nyssa Z., and Darren Tanner. "Going to town: Large scale norms and statistical analysis of 870 English idioms." Behavior Research Methods 49 (2017): 772-783.
    • Grey, Sarah, Darren Tanner, and Janet G. van Hell. "How right is left? Handedness modulates neural responses during morphosyntactic processing." Brain Research 1669 (2017): 27-43.
    • Montrul, Silvina, and Darren Tanner. "Individual differences and retrieval interference in L2 processing." Bilingualism: Language and Cognition 20 (2017): 704-705.
    • Shantz, Kailen, and Darren Tanner. "Talking out of order: Task order influences access to grammatical gender and phonology in lexical access." Language, Cognition and Neuroscience 32 (2017): 82-101.
    • Litcofsky, Kaitlyn, Darren Tanner, and Janet G. Van Hell. "Effects of language experience, use, and cognitive functioning on bilingual word production and comprehension." International Journal of Bilingualism 20 (2016): 666-683.
    • Tanner, Darren, James J. Norton, Kara Morgan-Short, and Steven J. Luck. "On high-pass filter artifacts (they’re real) and baseline correction (it’s a good idea) in ERP/ERMF analysis." Journal of Neuroscience Methods 265 (2016): 166-170.
    • Tanner, Darren, and Nyssa Z. Bulkes. "Cues, quantification, and agreement in language comprehension." Psychonomic Bulletin & Review 22 (2015): 1753-1763.
    • Mehravari, Alison S., Darren Tanner, Emma K. Wampler, Gelffrey D. Valentine, and Lee Osterhout. "Effects of Grammaticality and Morphological Complexity on the P600 Event-Related Potential Component." PLoS ONE 10.10 (2015): e0140850.
    • Tanner, Darren, Kara Morgan-Short, and Steve J. Luck. "How inappropriate high-pass filters can produce artifactual effects and incorrect conclusions in ERP studies of language and cognition." Psychophysiology 52 (2015): 997-1009.
    • Tanner, Darren. "On the left anterior negativity (LAN) in electrophysiological studies of morphosyntactic agreement." Cortex 66 (2015): 149-155.
    • Tanner, Darren, Kayo Inoue, and Lee Osterhout. "Brain-based individual differences in on-line L2 grammatical comprehension." Bilingualism: Language and Cognition 17 (2014): 277-293.
    • Tanner, Darren, and Janet van Hell. "ERPs reveal individual differences in morphosyntactic processing." Neuropsychologia 56 (2014): 289-301.
    • Tanner, Darren, Janet Nicol, and Laurel Brehm. "The time course of feature interference in agreement comprehension: Multiple mechanisms and asymmetrical attraction." Journal of Memory and Language 76 (2014): 195-215.
    • Tanner, Darren. "Individual differences and streams of processing." Linguistic Approaches to Bilingualism 3 (2013): 350-356.
    • Tanner, Darren, Judith McLaughlin, Julia Herschensohn, and Lee Osterhout. "Individual differences reveal stages of L2 grammatical acquisition: ERP evidence." Bilingualism: Language and Cognition 16 (2013): 376-382.
    • Van Hell, Janet G., and Darren Tanner. "Effects of second language proficiency on cross-language lexical activation." Language Learning 62.Suppl. 2 (2012): 148-171.
    • McLaughlin, Judith, Darren Tanner, Ilona Pitkänen, Cheryl Frenck-Mestre, Kayo Inoue, Geoffrey Valentine, and Lee Osterhout. "Brain potentials reveal discrete stages of L2 grammatical learning." Language Learning 60.Suppl. 2 (2010): 123-150.

    Book Contributions

    • Shantz, Kailen, and Darren Tanner. "Are L2 Learners Pressed for Time? Retrieval of Grammatical Gender Information in L2 Lexical Access." Proceedings of the 40th Annual Boston University Conference on Language Development. Comp. J. Scott and D. Waughtal. Somerville, MA: Cascadilla, 2016. 331-435.
    • Morgan-Short, Kara, and Darren Tanner. "Event-related potentials (ERPs)." Research Methods in Second Language Psycholinguistics. Ed. Jill Jegerski and Bill VanPatten. New York: Routledge, 2014. 127-152.
    • Tanner, Darren, Janet Nicol, Julia Herschensohn, and Lee Osterhout. "Electrophysiological markers of interference and structural facilitation in native and nonnative agreement processing." Proceedings of the 36th Annual Boston University Conference on Language Development. Comp. A. K. Biller, E. Y. Chung, and A. E. Kimball. Somerville, MA: Cascadilla, 2012. 594-606.