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Faculty

Ming Chew

Ming-Chew Teo

Assistant Professor
Chinese Studies
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Ming-Chew Teo is an assistant professor in the Modern and Classical Languages Department with a specialization in Chinese at the University of Houston. He received his BA and MA in Chinese Studies from the National University of Singapore, and his PhD in Chinese Linguistics from Stanford University. Born and raised in Singapore, he is interested in the study of linguistic contact between Chinese and other languages, second language acquisition, and sociolinguistics. More specifically, his work examines how languages change and evolve as a result of interactions between speakers of diverse language backgrounds. He has published articles in refereed journals like Journal of Chinese Linguistics and Studies in Language, and his research incorporates data from various Chinese dialects, Malay, Tamil, and English. He is currently working on the interaction between social and linguistic factors in Colloquial Singapore English and in second language acquisition. In addition to his research, he has taught classes ranging from Third-Year Chinese to Science of Language.

Education

  • PhD, Chinese Linguistics, Stanford University, 2016
  • MA, Chinese Language, National University of Singapore (Double degree program with Peking University), 2011
  • BA, Chinese Studies, National University of Singapore, 2009

Research Interests

  • Contact linguistics (contact between Chinese and other languages)
  • Second language acquisition
  • Sociolinguistics

Teaching

  • Third-Year Chinese (Stanford University)
  • World Englishes (Stanford Splash)
  • Science of Language (Stanford Splash)

Selected Publications

Teo, Ming-Chew. 2015. How language use shapes meaning: A case study of Singapore Southern Min loanword ‘balu’. Journal of Chinese Linguistics 43.2: 548-585.

Teo, Ming-Chew. 2014. Transferability of semantic functions in contact-induced grammaticalization: The case of Singapore Colloquial English ‘one’. Studies in Language 38.4: 836-863.

Selected Conference Presentations

Teo, Ming-Chew. 2016. ‘Yah lor’ in Singapore Colloquial English: A marker of Chineseness. Society for Pidgin and Creole Linguistics Winter Meeting, Marriott Marquis, Washington, DC, 7-10 January.

Teo, Ming-Chew. 2015. Transferability of semantic functions in contact-induced grammaticalization: The case of Singapore Colloquial English ‘one’. Society for Pidgin and Creole Linguistics Winter Meeting, Portland Hilton Executive Tower, Portland, 9-11 January.

Teo, Ming-Chew. 2014. Chinese influence on the acquisition of English: The case of Singapore English ‘one’. 20th Workshop on East Asian Languages, University of California, Los Angeles, 4-5 April.

Teo, Ming-Chew. 2013. How language use constrains semantic change: a case study of Singapore Southern Min loanword ‘balu’. North American Conference on Chinese Linguistics, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, 21-23 June.