Dr. Merel Scholman

Assistant Professor
Communication and Information Studies
Language and communication

I am a psycholinguist interested in how people can understand language. My primary interest lies in people's ability to construct rich mental representations of text. Constructing these representations requires understanding the discourse relations between clauses and sentences (e.g., causal and contrastive relations); such relations are a central topic in my work.

I use a combination of offline and online methodologies - corpus-based investigations, crowdsourced studies, and reading time experiments - to investigate questions related to the interpretation and processing of discourse (both written and spoken). My research contributes to building cognitive models of how language is processed and represented in the mind, and it helps to improve computational models of discourse. 

I am also affiliated as a researcher and co-Principal Investigator with Saarland University (Germany). My current research projects at Saarland University focus on individual differences in the processing and comprehension of discourse-level phenomena (ERC-funded project IDDISC), and information-theoretic explanations for discourse production and comprehension (DFG-funded project SFB 1102).