Upcoming conferences: Human Sentence Processing; Humanities@Work

As the end of the semester draws ever nearer, the number of seminars and conferences is hitting its peak. Here are some of the upcoming conferences this month.

Human Sentence Processing

The Learning Research and Development Center will host the 2023 Conference on Human Sentence Processing from March 9 to 11 at the University Club.

The conference is the premier event in North America for scientists interested in how humans comprehend and produce language. Human Sentence Processing is an interdisciplinary forum that draws researchers from the fields of linguistics, psychology, computer science, education, neuroscience, and philosophy.

Approximately 275 scientists (faculty, postdocs, graduate students, and undergraduates) will attend the conference in person, coming from all over North America and from Europe, Australia, East Asia, and Latin America. This year will be the first hybrid version of the conference and will welcome another 300 scientists online.

Amanda Godley, Pitt vice provost for graduate studies, will open the conference, and LRDC Director Charles Perfetti will give an invited talk “In What Specific ways — If Any — Does a Reader’s First Language Matter When They Read a Second Language?”

Find more details at the conference webpage.

Humanities@Work in the Community, Health & Tech Industries

The Humanities@Work project will host a all-day, cross-disciplinary conference on March 29  highlighting the significance of humanities in various industries. 

The keynote speaker is Ruth Watkins, president of Strada Impact, who will discuss “Student Success Beyond Graduation.” There also will be industry representatives from Zoom, Duolingo, 3M, Meta, CommonLit, and UPMC and a plenary session by CEO of the Forbes Funds, Fred. In addition, alumni and current students will share their experiences, and expert panels will discuss various topics including working across disciplines, 21st-century skills, social determinants of health and capacity building. 

Student success is a major focus of the conference. It will highlight experiential learning opportunities for students and concrete ways in which to integrate the humanities with technology, medicine, engineering, and other related fields. This is particularly important now as the humanities continue to face an uphill battle in the employment sector.

The conference builds on previous efforts of the 2019 Humanities@Work project; namely the linguistic internship and Humanities in Health Initiative Series at Pitt (2016-2021), as well as other work done by the Board on Higher Education and Workforce of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine who conducted a study focused on better understanding the impact of an integrated educational approach on students.

Topics will include: The Power of Language, Working with Language Data; Humanities in Tech; Linguistic Justice & Equity; Using Literature in Health Education; Religion, Spirituality, Language & Health and Cultural & Linguistic Competency, Cultural Humility.

Provost Ann Cudd will give opening remarks at 9 a.m. The conference will end with a 4:15 p.m. session on “Reflections on diverse internship experiences.”

Registration is free. The conference is fully in-person but some sessions may be broadcast via Zoom. For remote attendance details, contact HinH@pitt.edu. For other questions, contact Humanities@Work project director Abdesalam Soudi at soudia@pitt.edu.

The conference’s main sponsors are UPMC Health Plan, the David C. Frederick Honors College, the Forbes Funds and Edge Fearless Learning.


The STEM PUSH Network will host a national convening of its 43 partner precollege STEM programs from March 6 to 9 at the O’Hara Student Center.

“On the Equity Journey,” this year’s theme, will showcase research-practice connections and multiple speakers, discussions, evaluations, and events. Program leaders will present the results of their winter 2022-2023 testing of high leverage practices designed to create more equitable experiences and explore ways to measure competencies students develop that lead to increased participation in STEM programs.

Featured speakers include National Science Foundation Program Officer Alicia Santiago (virtual), Pittsburgh’s “Learning Instigator” Michelle King, and Professor Aileen Reid, University of North Carolina Greensboro.

The STEM PUSH Network is a project of the Broadening Equity in STEM Center (BE STEM) at the University of Pittsburgh. BE STEM was awarded $10 million from the NSF as an elite Alliance Award to conduct this work.