Matthew Tyler is a linguist specializing in syntactic theory and fieldwork. He completed his PhD at Yale University, where he investigated how verbs are constructed and linked with their arguments in Choctaw, a Muskogean language spoken in Mississippi. He is interested in several questions in syntactic theory more broadly. Chief among them are: what are the atomic 'pieces' of syntax that verbs are assembled out of? And how do the forms and meanings of verbs emerge out of this assembly of syntactic pieces? As part of his research, he spends time in Mississippi working with speakers of Choctaw to document the grammar of the language.
Matthew’s research spans syntax and its interfaces with morphology, phonology, discourse and the lexicon. His next research project investigates the form, function and syntactic behaviour of 'switch-reference' systems. These are reference-tracking systems, common in the languages of the Americas, whereby clauses exhibit special marking that indicates whether the subject of that clause is the same as, or different from, the subject of a connected clause.