Project PID2022-138413NB-I00, entitled Development and acquisition of preverbal syntax and semantics and financed by the Agencia Estatal de Investigación, is opening a funded 4-year PhD position in the Centre de Lingüística Teòrica of the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona.

Our project aims at advacing our understanding of language acquisition, by considering infant and child grammar in underexplored areas, all revolving around operators, with new methods now available. The experimental studies proposed regard the development of syntax and semantics at a point when infants are still unable to produce multiword sequences, but are nevertheless able to comprehend (to a still unknown extent) as revealed by eye-tracking techniques.

The research questions underlying the experiments proposed are: When do children establish the properties of the particular language they are acquiring? Is the acquisition path homogeneous across languages? Are the parochial properties of different languages established much earlier in the life of infants than previously thought? Pursuing our former work, we plan to investigate experimentally the comprehension of operators: wh-movement in wh- questions and logical operators.

Candidates with a background in linguistics, cognitive science and related fields, holding a Master’s degree, are invited to apply. The application period is from October 18th to October 25th, 2023, and further details on working conditions are available of the UAB portal ( Applications can be completed through the website ( For any further questions, do not hesitate to contact the PIs, Anna Gavarró ( and Elena Pagliarini (