Alon headshot

Alon Hafri

Lab Director

Assistant Professor of Linguistics & Cognitive Science

Alon (he/him/his) is interested in how language encodes the structure of scenes (e.g., what is in or on what) and events (e.g., who did what to whom), as well as the perceptual processes that extract such information. He earned his Ph.D. in Psychology from the University of Pennsylvania in 2019, where he worked with John Trueswell and Russell Epstein. He was a postdoctoral fellow at Johns Hopkins University in the labs of Chaz Firestone, Mick Bonner, and Barbara Landau in the Departments of Psychological & Brain Sciences and Cognitive Science. When not doing science, he enjoys making soup, soap, and beer, and only rarely confuses the three.


Dominique Lopiccolo

Graduate Student

Dominique (she/her/hers) is a PhD student in the Interdisciplinary Neuroscience Graduate (ING) Program. She is broadly interested in the extent to which the language(s) we know influence abstract thinking, with a particular interest in numerical and spatial cognition. She aims to investigate this general question using a range of behavioral and neuroimaging techniques and with participants who represent understudied language profiles in cognitive (neuro)science. She also enjoys traveling, playing volleyball, and musical theater (both attending and performing).

Neemias Souza Filho

Graduate Student

Neemias (he/him/his) is a PhD student in the Department of Linguistics and Cognitive Science. His broad research interest is language processing, with a special focus on how predictive models can explain our ability to integrate different kinds of information and process different linguistic constructions. He uses mostly behavioral methods to investigate these issues and is currently learning how to use EEG at the Experimental Psycholinguistics Lab, directed by Arild Hestvik. Before UD, Neemias completed his MA in Language Studies at the Federal University of Rio Grande do Norte in Natal, Brazil, advised by Mahayana Godoy. A good chunk of his free time is dedicated to something a lot harder and more exact than cognitive science: baking.

Xiaoyi Tang

Graduate Student

Xiaoyi (she/her/hers) is a PhD student in the Department of Linguistics and Cognitive Science. She is interested in psycholinguistics; and specifically, in developing experimental measures to study cross-linguistic event perception and linguistic encoding. Before coming to UD, she earned her M.S. in Educational Linguistics and worked as a graduate assistant at the University of Pennsylvania. When not doing research, she likes doing yoga and pilates (although not at the same time).

Luc De Nardi

Undergraduate Research Assistant

Luc (he/him/his) is a linguistics major with interests in historical and computational linguistics. He joined the lab in Fall 2022, and as such, he is the lab’s very first member! He is currently working on exploring whether words that encode abstract conceptual distinctions like “boundedness” might share sound patterns within and across languages. Luc speaks French and Spanish, and is also a music aficionado: he plays French horn in the UD marching band (which is audible all the way from the Newark reservoir, as attested by Alon).