2020 applicants

Dr Kyle Jerro

Department of Language and Linguistics
Dr Kyle Jerro
  • Email

  • Telephone

    +44 (0) 1206 872286

  • Location

    4.125, Colchester Campus

  • Academic support hours

    Tuesdays 15:00 - 17:00 https://essex-university.zoom.us/j/91719172904



I am interested in semantics, syntax, and lexical semantics. In particular, I am interested in the question of possible verb meanings and how the meaning of a verb derives argument realization. My dissertation (completed in May 2016) investigated the interface between verb meaning and morphosyntax in Bantu languages, looking at the syntax and semantics of applicative and causative morphology. Other topics of interest are copular verbs, agreement, grammatical complexity, lexical semantic typology, tense/aspect, and motion predicates. I have conducted fieldwork in East Africa on three languages: Kinyarwanda (Rwanda), Lubukusu (Kenya), and Chichewa (Malawi).


  • BA University of Nevada, Las Vegas

  • MA University of Texas at Austin

  • PhD University of Texas at Austin,


University of Essex

  • Lecturer, Language and Linguistics, University of Essex (1/9/2018 - present)

Other academic

  • Postdoctoral Researcher, University of Texas at Austin (1/5/2016 - 30/6/2017)

Research and professional activities

Research interests

Lexical Semantics

Open to supervise

Syntax-Semantics Interface

Open to supervise

Linguistic Typology

Open to supervise

Bantu linguistics

Open to supervise

Language Description

Open to supervise

Current research

applicative morphology and the theory of object symmetry

semantic contribution of applicative morphology

valency-decreasing morphology

hange-of-state predicates

Conferences and presentations


Teaching and supervision

Current teaching responsibilities

  • Syntax (LG212)

  • Syntactic Theory (LG514)

  • Professional Development for Research Students (LG595)

  • Language Expert 1 (LA041)


Journal articles (3)

Jerro, K., (2019). Ingestive verbs, causatives, and object symmetry in Lubukusu. Linguistic Inquiry. 50 (1), 219-232

Jerro, K., (2018). Change-of-state Paradigms and the middle in Kinyarwanda. Southern African Linguistics and Applied Language Studies. 36 (3), 235-260

Jerro, K., (2017). The causative–instrumental syncretism. Journal of Linguistics. 53 (4), 751-788

Book chapters (4)

Jerro, K., Revisiting Object Symmetry in Bantu. In: The selected proceedings of the 44th Annual Conference on African Linguistics

Jerro, K., When quantifiers agree in person: Anomalous agreement in Bantu. In: Studies in the Linguistic Sciences

Jerro, K., (2017). The Locative Applicative and the semantics of verb class in Kinyarwanda. In: Diversity in African languages: Selected papers from the 46th Annual Conference on African Linguistics. Editors: Payne, DL., Pacchiarotti, S. and Bosire, M., . Language Science Press. 289- 309. 978-3-946234-71-5

Jerro, K. and Wechsler, S., (2015). Person-Marked Quantifiers in Kinyarwanda. In: Agreement from a Diachronic Perspective. Editors: Fleischer, J., Rieken, E. and Widmer, P., . Mouton De Gruyter. 147- 164. 978-3-11-039996-7

Grants and funding


Variation in Sesotho and Setswana as spoken in the Free State

British Academy


+44 (0) 1206 872286


4.125, Colchester Campus

Academic support hours:

Tuesdays 15:00 - 17:00 https://essex-university.zoom.us/j/91719172904