Ockhamian Etymologies: The Mysteries of English Unraveled with William of Ockham—Diddles McGraw SpecGram Vol CLXXXIII, No 2 Contents Occam’s Safety Razor™ by Gillette—Advertisement

Tenure Case

Assistant Professor Marvin Allen Studebaker
Department of Linguistics
University of New South-Central Hampwiltfordshire, NSW

Hire Date: October 2011
Date of Tenure Review Application: December 2018




Words at the Crossroads: an interdisciplinary and cross-linguistic comparison of lexicalizations of the concept ‘crossroad’ in 427 languages, with literary and lexicographic annotations. 2014. Gulf Shores, Alabama: DIY Press. (This is a substantially revised version of my 2001 PhD Dissertation Alone at the Crossroads: why English ‘crossroads’ has no lexicalized translation equivalent in any known human language’.)

Refereed Articles

“Hypothesizing the Structure of Carrier Pigeon Communication.” 2017. Journal of Communication Studies of Neglected Species 1:1, 1–4.

“How to Publish a Linguistics Paper on Short Notice.” 2017. Journal of the Pursuit of Tenure 37:2, 1534–1535.

Courses Taught

Average of six courses per semester, including the following:

Phonetics I, Phonetics II, Advanced Phonetics, Phonology I, Remedial Phonology for Non-majors, Remedial Phonology for Majors, History of English, History of Japanese, History of Linguistics, History of the UNSCH Linguistics Department, Linguistics of Footie, Plosives, Suffixal Morphology in Postcommunist Perspective, Introduction to Lexicalism, Advanced Lexicalism, Dictionary Studies, Conversation Analysis at the Barbie, Language in Film, Language outside of Film, Field Methods, Introduction to Universal Grammar, Universal Discourse Functionalism, Infixation in Modern Standard Aussie English, Fillmorian Linguistics, Survey of the Theories of Linguists Surnamed Thompson, Syntactic Argumentation, Syntactic Argumentativeness, Universal Grammar: Pro and Con, Sociopoetics, Linguistic Analysis of Poetry, Philosophy of Science, Philosophy of Linguistics, Philosophy of Philosophy, Recursion in Cross-Linguistic Perspective, TA Practicum in Linguistics, Senior Seminar (Guided Research; average of 8 students per semester), Linguistics for Education Majors, Linguistics for Psychology Majors, Linguistics for Physics Majors, Linguistics for Business Majors, Linguistics Seminar for Athletes.

Professional Service

Linguistic Society of America, Annual Meeting Program Committee, Snacks Procurement Team

Endangered Language Fund, Grant Application Rejection Letter Specialist

University committee service: Faculty Senate (3 years), Food Truck Regulations Committee (6 years), Provost’s Committee on Undergraduate Research (1 year), Parking CommitteeSouth Campus Subcommittee (4 years), Parking CommitteeFees, Fines and Enforcement Brainstorming Group (3 years), President’s Standing Committee on Tuition and Fee Structures (7 years), Staff Appreciation Banquet Committee (3 years), Campus Beautification CommitteePerennials Subcommittee (2 years), Campus Beautification CommitteeGraffiti Repurposing Task Force (6 years), Dean’s Study Group on Grade Inflation (7 years), Dean’s Study Group on Curriculum Reform (7 years), Dean’s Study Group on Interdepartmental Harmony (7 years), Dean’s Study Group on Effective Study Groups (7 years).

Department service: MA Application Committeechair and sole member (7 years), Secretary Appreciation Gift Committeechair and sole member (7 years), MA Committee Service (Chaired 8 committees, served on 11 others), Department Representative to the Provost’s Monthly Departmental Forums (7 years), Coffee Pot Hygiene Committeechair and sole member (7 years), MA Curriculum Committeechair and sole member (7 years).


If I am not awarded tenure, the Linguistic Department will not be able to replace me unless you can persuade Dean Bishop that Linguistics is a real discipline, deserving of staffing. We all know how well that has gone every year since Dean Bishop arrived.

If successful in that endeavor, the Linguistics Department will need to conduct a long and probably contentious search for a new faculty member, leading to even further deterioration of already tenuous relationships. If a compromise candidate can be identified, it likely that some current faculty will need to give up Research Assistant positions in order to fund the new hire’s salary, now that housing costs near the University have doubled in the past 3 years. (I already own a house.)

Furthermore, although I admit that my students’ course evaluations were not uniformly flattering, I am confident that none of the current tenured Linguistics faculty wishes to take over either my teaching load or my University Committee commitments.

If I might be permitted, I would point out that Occam’s razor favors my tenure case: the lives of everyone in the Linguistics Department will remain simpler if I am granted tenure.

Ockhamian Etymologies: The Mysteries of English Unraveled with William of OckhamDiddles McGraw
Occam’s Safety Razor™ by GilletteAdvertisement
SpecGram Vol CLXXXIII, No 2 Contents