Nick Danis

Washington University in St. Louis
Campus Box 1073
One Brookings Drive
St. Louis, MO 63130

Research interests

  • Phonology, Optimality Theory, Computational linguistics, African languages

Academic Positions


  • Lecturer, Washington University in St. Louis (since 2019)


  • 2017-2019, Lecturer, Princeton University (10%-60% FTE)
  • 2018, Adjunct Professor, Rowan University


  • 2017, PhD in Linguistics, Rutgers University
  • 2011, MA in Applied Linguistics, Boston University
  • 2008, B.A. in Linguistics, cum laude, Boston University
  • 2008, B.S. in Film and Television, cum laude, Boston University


Journal articles

Conference Proceedings


  • Danis, Nick. 2017. Complex place and place identity. PhD Dissertation, Rutgers University. Chair: Akin Akinlabi. [doi, lingbuzz, ROA-1324]
  • Danis, Nick. 2014. Deriving Interactions of Complex Stops. Ms., Rutgers University. Second Qualifying Paper. Committee: Alan Prince (Chair), Bruce Tesar, Akin Akinlabi. [ROA-1220, ROA-1221 (OTWorkplace Supplement)]
  • Danis, Nick. 2011. The Phonological Word in Medumba. Ms., Boston University. Master’s project.

Edited Volumes




  • Danis, Nick. 2022. Natural class-preserving transductions among phonological representations. Workshop on Model-Theoretic Representations in Phonology. Stony Brook University, September 22-24, 2022. [supplemental material]
  • Danis, Nick and Adam Jardine. 2019. Q-Theory Representations are logically equivalent to Autosegmental Representations. SCiL, co-meeting with the LSA 2019.
  • Danis, Nick. 2016. Major place harmony and the (reduced) role of representation: Evidence from Ngbaka. AMP 2016. USC. October 21-23, 2016.
  • Danis, Nick. 2016. Cross-category vowel-consonant interactions in Aghem and Vietnamese. Presented at the University of Chicago Phonology Group, May 13, 2016.
  • Danis, Nick. 2015. Markedness and Complex Segments: Evidence from Simplification Processes. 8th World Congress of African Linguistics. Presented Talk. Kyoto University. August 21, 2015.
  • Danis, Nick. 2015. A Typology of Complex Segments: Multiple Place Interactions on a Scale. Workshop on Formal Typologies. Rutgers University, May 30, 2015.
  • Danis, Nick. 2015. Complex Segments Made Simple: Markedness and Doubly-Articulated Stops. 46th Annual Conference on African Linguistics. Presented Talk. University of Oregon. March 27, 2015.
  • Danis, Nick, Jonathan Barnes, and Catherine O’Connor. 2011. Downstep and Contour Formation in Medumba: A Grassfields Bantu Language. 42th Annual Conference on African Linguistics. Presented Talk. University of Maryland.


Student Work

  • Calhoun, Adrianna. 2021. Invisible Issues: Exploring the Unspoken Rift Between the Black Community and the Field of Speech-Language Pathology. Senior honor’s thesis, Washington University in St. Louis. (reader)
  • Goldberg, Jack. 2021. Phonological treatment of affricates in Yiddish and segmental analysis. Poster presented at CULC 15. (directed study)
  • Zhang, Yutong. 2021. A phonological analysis of the word-borrowing process in Volapük. Senior honor’s thesis, Washington University in St. Louis. (primary advisor)
  • Goldberg, Jack. 2020. Phonological treatment of affricates in Yiddish. Poster presented at Midphon 25. (directed study)


Washington University in St. Louis

Course Name Semesters
L44 Ling 148 The Linguistics of Constructed Languages Fall 2019, 2020, 2021; Spring 2021; Summer 2021
L44 Ling 170D Introduction to Linguistics Fall 2019, 2020, Spring 2019, 2021
L44 Ling 312 Phonetics Spring 2019, 2020
L44 Ling 313 Phonological Analysis Fall 2019, 2020, 2021
L44 Ling 317 Introduction to Computational Linguistics Spring 2019, 2020, 2021
L44 Ling 427 Computation and Learnability in Linguistic Theory Fall 2021; Spring 2020

Princeton University

Course Name Semesters
LIN201 Introduction to Language and Linguistics (preceptor) Fall 2018; Spring 2018

Rowan University

Course Name Semesters
CMS 04326 Linguistics Spring 2018

Rutgers University

Course Name Semesters
01:615:190 Linguistic Perspectives on Language: Invented Languages Fall 2016; Spring 2016, 2017
01:615:201 Introduction to Linguistic Theory Fall 2013 (TA); Spring 2014; Summer 2015

Field Experience

  • 2010, Medumba ([byv], Grassfields Bantu, Cameroon): Conducted one month of intensive fieldwork in Yaoundé, Bangangté, and local surrounding villages. Funded by NSF Grant BCS 1026724.



  • 2021, Stellenbosch Papers in Linguistics Plus
  • 2020, Natural Language and Linguistic Theory
  • 2018-2020, Phonology
  • 2019, Cambridge University Press
  • 2017, Oxford University Press
  • 2015, Diversity in African languages: Selected papers from the 46th Annual Conference on African Linguistics

Other Education

Summer Programs

  • 2021, May 2021 Data Science Boot Camp
    Erdős Institute
  • 2010, 3L Summer School on Language Documentation and Description
    Leiden, Netherlands
  • 2010, Medumba Intensive Literacy Course
    Comité de Langue pour l’Etude et la Production des Œuvres Bamiléké-Medumba (CEPOM)
    Bangangté, Cameroon
  • 2009, LSA Summer Institute
    University of California, Berkeley


  • 2019, Washington University Course Innovation Grant
  • 2016, Mellon Summer Study Grant
  • 2014, Excellence Fellowship for doctoral study in Linguistics
  • 2014, Mellon Summer Study Grant
  • 2011-2012, Excellence Fellowship for doctoral study in Linguistics



  • English (native)
  • Italian (intermediate to advanced)
  • Medumba [byv] (research and field knowledge)
  • French, German (academic reading)
  • ASL (basic)


  • ◾◾◾◾◾ OTWorkplace/VBA
  • ◾◾◾◾◽ Python
    • ◾◾◾◾◽ nltk
    • ◾◾◾◽◽ pandas/matplotlib
    • ◾◾◽◽◽ flask
    • ◾◾◽◽◽ sklearn
    • ◾◾◽◽◽ scipy
  • ◾◾◾◾◽ Praat
  • ◾◾◾◾◽ LaTeX
  • ◾◾◾◽◽ HTML/CSS