Marjorie McShane

Marjorie McShane develops cognitive models of intelligent agents that can collaborate with people in task-oriented, dialog applications. While at heart a linguist, she is particularly interested in the integration of functionalities that are often treated in isolation, such as physiological simulation, emotion modeling, and the many aspects of cognition. 

One aspect of cognition to which she has devoted particular attention is natural language processing, approached from a cross-linguistic perspective and with the goal of producing machine-tractable descriptions that can support sophisticated conversational agents. She has also worked extensively on cognitive modeling in the medical domain, to support the configuration of intelligent agents playing the roles of virtual patients and tutors in training applications such as the Maryland Virtual Patient system.

McShane has (co-)authored three books: Linguistics for the Age of AI (MIT Press, 2021), A Theory of Ellipsis (Oxford University Press, 2005), and An Innovative, Practical Approach to Polish Inflection (Lincom Europa, 2003). She has published extensively on linguistics, natural language processing, cognitive modeling, and knowledge representation.


PhD, Slavic Languages and Literatures, Princeton University

Focus Area

linguistics, cognitive modeling, natural language processing