Linguistics Program



Oksana Laleko
Associate Professor and Director, Linguistics Program
Office: JFT 412
Phone: (845) 257-2745

Oksana Laleko received a Ph.D. in linguistics from the University of Minnesota. Her research interests focus on the interface between syntax and discourse-pragmatics, the encoding of information structure, and bilingual language acquisition. Her recent work examines cross-linguistic parallels in heritage language acquisition, second language acquisition, and language loss.
She teaches Syntax, Bilingualism, Etymology and Morphology, and Introduction to Linguistics for the Linguistics Program.
Eric Chambers
Adjunct Faculty, Linguistics Program
Office: JFT 416
Eric Chambers holds a Ph.D. in linguistics from the City of New York University Graduate Center. His interests include phonology, Columbia School Grammar linguistics, sociolinguistics, and language and identity. He has studied Russian, French, and Georgian, as well as language histories and policies of the Soviet and post-Soviet diaspora.
He teaches Introduction to Linguistics and Sociolinguistics for the Linguistics Program.


Elizabeth Hirshorn

Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology
Office: HW 310
Phone: (845) 257-2372

Elizabeth Hirshorn received a Ph.D. in Brain and Cognitive Sciences from the University of Rochester. Her research interests focus on the diversity of successful reading processes that are influenced by both individual differences and external experience such as what writing system is learned or exposure to musical training.  Her research employs both behavioral and electrophysiological methods. 

She teaches Psychology of Language (Psycholinguistics) for the Linguistics Program.


Victor de Munck

Associate Professor, Department of Anthropology
Office: WSB 228
Phone: (845) 257-2985

Victor de Munck received a Ph.D. from the University of California Riverside. After teaching at the University of New Hampshire, he joined the faculty at SUNY New Paltz in 1997. His courses include Research Methods, Cultures of India, Cultural Anthropology, Political Anthropology, and Cognitive Anthropology. From January through May 2009, he taught cultural anthropology and anthropological data collection methods and analysis at St. Cyril Methodius University in Skopje, Macedonia, on a Fulbright grant.  Previously, deMunck received a Fulbright grant and lectured in Lithuania.           
He teaches Cognitive Anthropology for the Linguistics Program.

Elizabeth Hester, Department of Communication Disorders
Assistant Professor
Office:  HUM B4B
Phone: (845) 257-3465

Elizabeth Hester is coordinator of graduate programs in communications disorders. Her primary areas of academic interest are phonology and child language. She received her master’s degree from California State University, Fresno, where she subsequently conducted clinic at Valley Children’s Hospital in both patient and outpatient settings. She received her doctoral degree from Wichita State University, where she carried out recently published research with Barbara Hodson on phonological production, working memory, and reading decoding. Her research interests include the study of suprasegmental basis of speech and reading, the evolution of language and speech perception and the precursors of phonological awareness. She currently teaches phonetics, phonology, and child language at SUNY New Paltz and enjoys hiking and skiing in the mountains nearby.
She teaches Phonetics and Child Language Acquisition for the Linguistics Program.

Daniel Kempton, Department of English
Associate Professor/Interim Chair, Communication Disorders
Office: JFT 818
Phone: (845) 257-2728

Daniel Kempton received a doctorate in literature from the University of California, Santa Cruz in 1977.  His primary areas of teaching and research are medieval literature and literary theory and his avocation is opera.  He has published on Chaucer, Christine de Pizan, Edgar Allan Pie and Benjamin Britton.
He teaches Introduction to Old English and the Development of Modern English for the Linguistics Program.