Yasemin Yıldız was born and raised in London as an English-Turkish bilingual, and educated in the UK. Her first name ‘Yasemin’ is internationally recognised, and thus pronounced or spelt in differing ways, yet the two phonetic variants she uses interchangeably include: /jɑ.se. ˈmin/ with her Turkish accent, or /ˈjæz.mɪn/ with her British English (BE) accent. Her surname ‘Yildiz’ (without a dot in /i/ in Turkish orthography) is of Turkish origin, meaning: ‘Star’ and pronounced interchangeably as /jɯl.ˈdɯz/ with her Turkish accent or /ˈjiːl.diz/ with her BE accent. Her parents are of Turkish origin and moved and settled to London, UK, from Turkey in 1971. Her father is from the Black sea region (hometown Rize) and her mother is from the Aegean region (hometown Denizli) of Turkey. She represents the second generation of the Turkish-English bilinguals living in London.
Yasemin Yildiz received her B.A. degree in English Language, Literature and Linguistics from the University of Westminster in 1998. She later moved to the University of Essex, where she completed her postgraduate education, in the Department of Language and Linguistics. She received her M.A. degree with a ‘Distinction’ in Descriptive and Applied Linguistics in 2002, with her dissertation entitled “Language Contact and Phonological adaptation: A Sociolinguistic study of language use by three generations of English-Turkish bilinguals living in London”. She then received her Ph.D. in Linguistics in 2006, which was funded by the Economic and Social Research Council Scholarship. Her doctoral thesis was entitled as “Age Effects in the Second Language Acquisition of English Onset Clusters by Turkish Learners: An Optimality-Theoretic Approach”. She also holds a Trinity College London Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL).
She has worked extensively as a lecturer and teacher educator for universities in the UK, UAE and Turkey. Currently, she is a Visiting Lecturer in Linguistics at the University of Westminster, London. In 2015, she established the Mehmet Osman Corpus, which is an ongoing longitudinal documentation of her son’s English-Turkish bilingual speech development. Her work focuses on- but not limited to: developmental linguistics, phonetics, phonology, contact linguistics, and sociolinguistics. Her language specialization is English and Turkish linguistics, and has also recently been interested in the Arabic language. Her scholarly work has been published in leading international journals and books, and she has also acted as a reviewer for The Language Learning Journal and Essex Graduate Papers in Language and Linguistics.
Currently she is also an Associate Editor for Open Access Books program in Linguistics of Versita de Gruyter Publishing.
Her extracurricular interests include: swimming, jogging, gardening, doing embroidery, experimenting with her culinary skills, reading classical and contemporary novels, listening to classical music, travelling, and enjoying the simplicities of life!
Further information for academic and research background of Dr. Yildiz can be viewed from the following link Curriculum Vitae.