Department of Linguistics University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

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Dr. Silvina Montrul

Professor of Linguistics
Professor of Second Language Acquisition and Teacher Education
SPANISH & PORTUGUESE; Affiliated Faculty of Latin American and Caribbean Studies
Professor of LAS Global Studies
Professor of Spanish and Portuguese
Beckman Institute
Center for Global Studies

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  • Address:
    Span & Port/Linguistics
    4120For Lang Bldg
    707 S Mathews
    M/C 176
    Urbana, IL 61801
  • Telephone: (217)333-1780
  • Email:
CV: Download my C.V.



  • Montrul, Silvina. The Acquisition of Heritage Languages. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2016.
  • Montrul, Silvina. El bilingüismo en el mundo hispanohablante.. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell, 2013.
  • Montrul, S. Incomplete Acquisition in Bilingualism. Re-examining the Age Factor. [Series on Studies in Bilingualism]. Amsterdam: John Benjamins, 2008.
  • Montrul, S. The Acquisition of Spanish. Morphosyntactic Development in Monolingual and Bilingual L1 Acquisition and in Adult L2 Acquisition. [Series on Language Acquisition and Language Disorders]. Amsterdam: John Benjamins, 2004.

Books Edited

  • Arregi, K., Z. Fagyal, S. Montrul, and A. Tremblay. Interactions in Romance. Selected papers from the 38th Linguistic Symposium on Romance Languages.. Amsterdam: John Benjamins, 2010.
  • Slabakova, R, S Montrul, and P Prévost. Inquiries in Linguistic Development. In Honor of Lydia White. Amsterdam: John Benjamins, 2006.
  • Linguistic Theory and Language Development in Hispanic Languages. Selected Papers from the 5th Hispanic Linguistics Symposium and the 2001 Conference on the Acquisition of Spanish and Portuguese. Somerville, MA: Cascadilla Press, 2003.

Journal Articles

  • Montrul, Silvina, Rakesh Bhatt, and Roxana Girju. "Differential Object Marking in Spanish, Hindi and Romanian as heritage languages. ." Language 91.3 (2015): 1-47.
  • Benmamoun, Elabbas, Abdulkafi Albirini, Silvina Montrul, and Eman Saadah. "Arabic plurals and root and pattern morphology in Palestinian and Egyptian heritage speakers. ." Linguistic Approaches to Bilingualism 4.1 (2014): 89-123.
  • Montrul, Silvina, Justin Davidson, Israel de la Fuente, and Rebecca Foote. "Early language experience facilitates gender agreement processing in Spanish heritage speakers. ." Bilingualism: Language and Cognition 17.1, 118-138 (2014):
  • Benmamoun, Elabbas, Silvina Montrul, and Maria Polinsky. "Defining and “ideal” heritage speaker: Theoretical and methodological challenges. Reply to peer commentaries. ." Theoretical Linguistics 39.3-4 (2013): 259-294.
  • Montrul, Silvina, and Noelia Sánchez-Walker. "Differential object marking in child and adult Spanish heritage speakers. ." Language Acquisition 20.109-132 (2013):
  • Montrul, Silvina. "How native are heritage speakers? A look at gender agreement in Spanish. ." The Heritage Language Journal 10.2, 15-39 (2013):
  • Benmamoun, Elabbas, Silvina Montrul, and Maria Polinsky. "Keynote article. Heritage languages and their speakers: Opportunities and challenges for linguistics. ." Theoretical Linguistics 39.3-4 (2013): 129-181.
  • Montrul, Silvina, Israel de la Fuente, Justin Davidson, and Rebecca Foote. "The role of experience in the acquisition and production of diminutives and gender in Spanish: Evidence from L2 learners and heritage speakers." Second Language Reserach 29.1, 87-118 (2013):
  • Montrul, Silvina, and Tania Ionin. "Dominant language transfer in Spanish heritage speakers and L2 learners in the interpretation of definite articles. ." The Modern Language Journal 96.2 (2012): 70-94.
  • Montrul, Silvina, Rakesh Bhatt, and Archna Bhatia. "Erosion of case and agreement in Hindi heritage Speakers.." Linguistic Approaches to Bilingualism 2 (2012): 141-176.
  • Ionin, T., S. Montrul, and H. Santos. "An Experimental Investigation of the Expression of Genericity in English, Spanish and Brazilian Portuguese." Lingua 121 (2011): 963-985.
  • Montrul, S., R. Dias, and H. Santos. "Clitics and object expression in the L3 acquisition of Brazilian Portuguese. Structural similarity matters for transfer.." Special issue of Second Language Research on L3 acquisition 27.1 (2011): 21-58.
  • "Interfaces and incomplete acquisition." Lingua 212.4 (2011): 591-604.
  • "Morphological errors in Spanish second language learners and heritage speakers. ." Studies in Second Language Acquisition 33.2 (2011): 155-161.
  • Montrul, S. "Current issues in heritage language acquisition." Annual Review of Applied Linguistics 30 (2010): 3-23.
  • Montrul, S. "Dominant language transfer in Spanish L2 learners and heritage speakers." Special issue of Second Language Research 26.3 (2010): 293-925.
  • Montrul, S. "How similar are L2 learners and heritage speakers? Spanish clitics and word order." Applied Psycholinguistics 31 (2010): 167-207.
  • Montrul, S, and M Bowles. "Is grammar instruction beneficial for heritage language learners? Dative case marking in Spanish." The Heritage Language Journal 7.1 (2010): 47-73.
  • Montrul, S, and M Bowles. "Is grammar instruction beneficial for heritage language learners? Dative case marking in Spanish." The Heritage Language Journal 7.1 (2010): 47-73.
  • Ionin, T, and S Montrul. "The role of L1-transfer in the interpretation of articles with definite plurals in L2-English." Language Learning 60.4 (2010): 877-925.
  • Montrul, S., and T. Ionin. "Transfer effects in the interpretation of definite articles by Spanish heritage speakers.." Bilingualism: Language and Cognition 13.4 (2010): 449-473.
  • Montrul, S., and M. Bowles. "Back to basics: Differential Object Marking under incomplete acquisition in Spanish heritage speakers." Bilingualism: Language and Cognition 12.4 (2009): 363-383.
  • "Incomplete Acquisition of Tense-Aspect and Mood in Spanish Heritage Speakers." The International Journal of Bilingualism 13.3 (2009): 239-269.
  • Montrul, S.. "Reexamining the Fundamental Difference Hypothesis: What can early bilinguals tell us?." Studies in Second Language Acquisition 31.2 (2009): 225-257.
  • Montrul, S, R Foote, and S Perpiñán. "Gender agreement in adult second language learners and Spanish heritage speakers: The effects of age and context of acquisition." Language Learning 58.3 (2008): 503–553.
  • Montrul, S, and K Potowski. "Command of gender agreement in school-age Spanish bilingual children." International Journal of Bilingualism 11.3 (2007): 301–328.
  • Montrul, S. "Subject and object expression in Spanish heritage speakers: A case of morpho-syntactic convergence." Bilingualism: Language and Cognition 7.2 (2004): 125–142.
  • Montrul, S, and R Slabakova. "Competence similarities between native and near-native speakers: An investigation of the preterite/imperfect contrast in Spanish." Studies in Second Language Acquisition 25.3 (2003): 351-398.
  • "Incomplete acquisition and attrition of Spanish tense/aspect distinctions in adult bilinguals." Bilingualism: Language and Cognition 5.1 (2002): 39-68.