Heather Littlefield

Heather Littlefield

Teaching Professor
Linguistics Program


  • Language Acquisition, Syntactic Categories, Language And Culture, Language Prestige And Power

About Heather Littlefield

Prof. Littlefield earned her PhD in Applied Linguistics at Boston University, with special interest in the syntactic properties of lexical and functional categories and in the acquisition of prepositions. She enjoys teaching a wide range of courses, including Syntax, Language Acquisition, History of English, the Research Seminar in Linguistics, and Topics in Linguistics (most recently on Pidgins and Creoles).

Prof. Littlefield also teaches in the Honors Program, including a freshman inquiry course that uses literature as a springboard to investigate topics in linguistics, and an upper-level seminar on linguistic diversity, discrimination and language identity.

Her commitment extends beyond the classroom, where she focuses her time on mentoring undergraduate research, including over 30 independent projects and over 20 undergraduate Honors Projects in Linguistics. Many of her students are awarded funding, and all present their findings at various venues. In 2014 she founded the biannual Research in Linguistics Poster Session, which allows over 100 students each year to share the results of their research.

Prof. Littlefield’s excellence in teaching and her commitment to her students’ professional development has been recognized at the university, where she was awarded the College of Science Excellence in Teaching Award (2022), the John Portz Faculty Excellence Award by the Honors Program (2018), and voted a “Northeastern Favorite Faculty” in the Cauldron Yearbook.


Mailing Address:

545 NI (Nightingale Hall), Boston, MA 02115

Your Tomorrow Starts Here.Learn More Today.