Kimberly L. Geeslin

Kimberly L. Geeslin

Professor, Spanish and Portuguese

Associate Vice Provost, Faculty and Academic Affairs


  • Ph.D., University of Arizona, 1999
  • M.A., University of Arizona, 1995
  • B.A., University of New Hampshire, 1993

About Kimberly L. Geeslin

I joined the faculty of Indiana University in the fall of 1999, after receiving an M.A. in Hispanic Linguistics and a Ph.D. in Second Language Acquisition and Teaching (SLAT) from the University of Arizona. My research focuses on the second language acquisition of the sociolinguistically-variable properties of Spanish. As such, I examine how learners come to use and interpret language in contextually appropriate ways. These contexts may be defined according to linguistic factors, the characteristics of the speaker and hearer, the location of the interaction (situational or geographic), and the acquisition context (e.g., study abroad), to name only a few.

I have conducted research on the acquisition of Spanish sounds, grammatical structure and the meaning conveyed by these forms using production, interpretation and psycholinguistic tasks. Knowledge of how learners gradually incorporate socially and linguistically governed variability into their developing grammars over time contributes to our understanding of the form that learner grammars take and the many ways in which the patterns in the language to which learners are exposed influence language processing and development.

I am a 2015 recipient of an Indiana University SEED grant (30K) and I have authored 2 monographs and 5 edited volumes. I have published over 70 journal articles and book chapters in venues such as Language Learning, Studies in Second Language Acquisition, Hispania, Studies in Hispanic and Lusophone Linguistics, Spanish in Context and Probus on second language acquisition and sociolinguistic variation.

I teach undergraduate and graduate classes in Hispanic Linguistics, including introductory and specialized courses in second language acquisition. In recent years I have taught special topics classes on variation in second languages, study abroad, and the processing of sociolinguistic variation. In addition to serving students who choose majors and minors in Spanish, my classes provide important training to undergraduates preparing for careers in diverse fields such as education, neuroscience and health sciences, among others, and to graduate students preparing for careers both in and outside academia. I continually seek to make the generalizable skill set gained through the study of Hispanic linguistics transparent to students at all levels. I am co-author of a new textbook in Hispanic Linguistics (Wiley- Blackwell, 2018). I am the recipient of the David and Cheryl Morley Career Distinguished Teaching Award (2019), the Trustee’s Teaching Award (2001-2002, 2007-2008, 2011-2012) and the GSAC Outstanding Mentor Award (2006, 2012).

My service contributions on campus include nearly a decade as director of our program in Hispanic Linguistics, a year as interim chair and 5 years as associate chair. I also served a two-year term on the tenure and promotion committee for the College of Arts and Sciences. I am currently the Associate Vice Provost for Faculty and Academic Affairs. Beyond Indiana University, I serve as co-editor of a John Benjamins book series called Issues in Hispanic and Lusophone Linguistics, Associate Editor for Studies in Second Language Acquisition and Studies in Hispanic and Lusophone Linguistics and on the editorial board for 4 additional journals. 


  • Second Language Acquisition (issues in the acquisition of Spanish by English-speakers)
  • The intersection of sociolinguistics and Second Language Learning (language variation and change)
Books & edited volumes
  • Geeslin, K. L. (Ed.). (2018). The Cambridge handbook of Spanish linguistics. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. 763 pages.
  • Díaz-Campos, M., Geeslin, K. L., & Gurzynski-Weiss, L. (2018). Lengua en contexto: Introducción y aplicación de la lingüística hispánica. New York, NY: Wiley-Blackwell. 356 pages.
  • Geeslin, K., with Long, A. Y. (2014). Sociolinguistics and Second Language Acquisition: Learning to Use Language in Context. New York, NY: Routledge.
  • Geeslin, K. (Ed.). (2014). The Handbook of Spanish Second Language Acquisition. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell.
  • Geeslin, K., & Díaz-Campos, M. (Eds.). (2012). Selected Proceedings of the 14th Hispanic Linguistics Symposium. Somerville, MA: Cascadilla Press.
  • Guijarro-Fuentes, P., & Geeslin, K. (2008). Language Acquisition, Language Variation and Copula Choice in Spanish. Special volume (11, 3, 273 - 387) of Bilingualism: Language and Congnition. Cambridge University Press.
  • Geeslin, K. (2005). Crossing Disciplinary Boundaries to Improve the Analysis of Second Language Data: A Study of Copula Choice with Adjectives in Spanish. Munich: LINCOM Publishers.
  • Lee, J., Geeslin, K., & Clements, J. C. (Eds.). (2002). Structure, Meaning and Acquisition in Spanish: Selected Papers from the Fourth Hispanic Linguistic Symposium. Somerville, MA: Cascadilla Press.
Refereed articles and book chapters
  • Geeslin, K. L. (In Press). Sociolinguistic competence in second languages. In H. Mohebbi, & C. Coombe (Eds.), Research questions in language education and applied linguistics. New York, NY: Springer.
  • Kanwit, M., & Geeslin, K. L. (2018). Exploring lexical effects in second language interpretation: The case of mood in Spanish adverbial clauses. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 40, 579-603.
  • Solon, M., Linford, B., & Geeslin, K. L. (2018). Acquisition of sociophonetic variation: Intervocalic /d/ reduction in native and non-native Spanish. Revista Española de Lingüística Aplicada, 31(1), 309-344.
  • Geeslin, K. L. & Garrett, J. (2018). Variationist research methods and the analysis of second language data in the study abroad context. In C. Sanz & A. Morales-Front (Eds.), The Routledge handbook of study abroad research and practice. New York, NY: Routledge.
  • Geeslin, K. L., & Schmidt, L. B. (2018). Study abroad and L2 learner attitudes. In C. Sanz & A. Morales-Front (Eds.), The Routledge handbook of study abroad research and practice. New York, NY: Routledge.
  • Long, A. Y., Shin, S.-Y., Geeslin, K. L., & Willis, E. W. (2018). Does the test work? Evaluating a web-based language placement test. Language Learning & Technology, 22(1), 137-156.
  • Geeslin, K. L. (2018). Variable structures and sociolinguistic variation. In P. A. Malovrh & A. G. Benati (Eds.), The handbook of advanced proficiency in second language acquisition. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell.
  • Geeslin, K. L., Gudmestad, A., Kanwit, M., Linford, B., Long, A. Y., Schmidt, L., & Solon, M. (2018). Sociolinguistic competence and the acquisition of speaking. In R. Alonso (Ed.), Speaking in a second language (pp. 1-25). Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
  • Geeslin, K. L., & Evans-Sago, T. (2018). Contacto entre lenguas y enseñanza del español. In J. Muñoz-Basols, E. Gironzetti & M. Lacorte (Eds.), The Routledge Handbook of Spanish Language Teaching: metodologías, contextos y recursos para la enseñanza del español L2 (pp. 432-446). London and New York: Routledge.
  • Gurzynski-Weiss, L., Geeslin, K. L., Long, A. Y., & Daidone, D. (2017). Linguistic variation in instructor provision of oral input. In L. Gurzynski-Weiss (Ed.), Expanding individual difference research in the interaction approach: Investigating learners, instructors, and researchers (pp. 226-253). Amsterdam, Netherlands: John Benjamins.
  • Geeslin, K. L., & Long, A. Y. (2017). Spanish second language acquisition across the globe: What future research on non-English speaking learners will tell us. Hispania, 100(5), 205-210.
  • Linford, B., Long, A. Y., Solon, M., & Geeslin, K. L. (2016). Measuring lexical frequency: Comparison groups and subject expression in L2 Spanish. In L. Ortega, A. Tyler, M. Uno & H. I. Park (Eds.), The usage-based study of language learning and multilingualism (pp. 137-154). Washington, DC: Georgetown University Press.
  • Geeslin, K., & Gudmestad, A. (2016). Native and non-native subject form expression in Spanish: a look at the first and second person. Spanish in Context, 13(1), 53-79.
  • Kanwit, M., Geeslin, K., & Fafulas, S. (2015). The role of geography in the SLA of variable structures: A look at the present perfect, the copula contrast, and the present progressive in Mexico and Spain. Probus, 27(2), 307-348.
  • Geeslin, K., Linford, B., & Fafulas, S. (2015). Variable subject expression in second language Spanish? Uncovering the developmental sequence and predictive linguistic factors. In A. Carvalho, R. Orozco, & N. Shin (Eds.), Subject pronoun expression in Spanish: A cross-dialectal perspective. Washington, DC: Georgetown University Press.
  • Geeslin, K., & Long, A. (2015). Adquisición del español como segunda lengua: fonología. In J. Gutiérrez-Rexach (Ed.), Enciclopedia de lingüística hispánica. New York: Routledge.
  • Kanwit, M., & Geeslin, K. (2014). The interpretation of the Spanish subjunctive in adverbial clauses: A cross-sectional study. Studies in Second Language Acquisition 36(3).
  • Gudmestad, A., House, L., & Geeslin, K. (2013). What a Bayesian Analysis can do for the sociolinguistic study of subject expression in second-language Spanish. Language Learning, 63(1), 371-399.
  • Geeslin, K. L. (2013). Future directions in the acquisition of variable structures: The role of individual lexical items in second language Spanish. In C. Howe, M. Lubbers & S. Blackwell (Eds.), Selected Proceedings of the 15th Hispanic Linguistics Symposium, pp. 187-204. Somerville, MA: Cascadilla Press.
  • Geeslin, K. L., Fafulas, S., & Kanwit, M. (2013). Acquiring geographically-variable norms of use: The case of the present perfect in Mexico and Spain. In C. Howe, M. Lubbers & S. Blackwell (Eds.), Selected Proceedings of the 15th Hispanic Linguistics Symposium, pp. 205-220. Somerville, MA: Cascadilla Press.
  • Gudmestad, A., & Geeslin, K. (2013). Second-language development of variable future-time expression in Spanish. In A. Carvahlo & S. Beaudrie (Eds.), Refereed Proceedings of the 6th International Workshop on Spanish Sociolinguistics, pp. 63-75. Somerville, MA; Cascadilla Press.
  • Geeslin, K., & Fafulas, S. (2012). Variation of the Simple Present and Present Progressive Forms: A Comparison of Native and Non-native Speakers. Refereed Proceedings for the Hispanic Linguistics Symposium, Somerville, MA: Cascadilla Press.
  • Geeslin, K. (2011).Variation in L2 Spanish: The state of the discipline. Studies in Hispanic and Lusophone Linguistics 4(2), 461-517.
  • Geeslin, K. (2011). The acquisition of variation in second language Spanish: How to identify and catch a moving target. In M. Díaz-Campos (Ed.), Handbook of Spanish Sociolinguistics, pp. 303-320. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell.
  • Geeslin, K., & Gudmestad, A. (2011). The Acquisition of variation in second-language Spanish: An agenda for integrating studies of the L2 sound system. Journal of Applied Linguistics 5 (2), 137-157.
  • Geeslin, K., & Gudmestad, A. (2011). Using Sociolinguistic Analyses of Discourse-Level Features to Expand Research on L2 Variation: Native and Non-Native Contrasts in Forms of Spanish Subject Expression. In L. Plonsky and M. Schierloh (Eds.), Selected Proceedings of the 2009 Second Language Research Forum: Diverse Contributions to SLA, pp. 16-30. Somerville, MA: Cascadilla Press.
  • Gudmestad, A., & Geeslin, K. (2011). Assessing the Use of Multiple Forms in Variable Contexts: The Relationship between Linguistic Factors and Future-Time Reference in Spanish. Studies in Hispanic and Lusophone Linguistics 4(1), 3-34.
  • Diaz-Campos, M., & Geeslin, K. (2011). Copula Use in the Spanish of Venezuela: Social and Linguistic Sources of Variation Spanish. Spanish in Context, 8(1), 73-94.
  • Geeslin, K. (2010). Beyond “naturalistic”: On the role of task characteristics and the importance of multiple elicitation methods. Studies in Hispanic and Lusophone Linguistics, 3(2), 501-520.
  • Geeslin, K., & Gudmestad, A. (2010). An exploration of the range and frequency of occurrence of forms in potentially-variable structures in second language Spanish. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 32, 3, 433-463.
  • Henriksen, N., Geeslin, K., & Willis, E. (2010). The Development of L2 Spanish Intonation During a Study Abroad Immersion Program in León, Spain: Global Contours and Final Boundary Movements. Studies in Hispanic and Lusophone Linguistics 3(1), 113-162.
  • Geeslin, K., & Guijarro-Fuentes, P. (2008). Variation in Contemporary Spanish: Linguistic Predictors of Estar in four Cases of Language Contact. Bilingualism: Language and Cognition, 11, 3, 365-380.
  • Geeslin, K., & Guijarro-Fuentes, P. (2007). The SLA of Variable Structures: Analyzing Obligatory and Variable Contexts. ITL: International Journal of Applied Linguistics, 153, 25-51.
  • Geeslin, K. & Guijarro-Fuentes, P. (2006). The Second Language Acquisition of Variable Structures in Spanish by Portuguese Speakers. Language Learning 56 (1), 53-107.
  • Guijarro-Fuentes, P., & Geeslin, K. (2006). Copula choice in the Spanish of Galicia: The effects of bilingualism on language use. Spanish in Context, 3(1).
  • Geeslin, K. (2003). A comparison of copula choice in advanced and native Spanish. Language Learning, 53, 4, 703-764.
  • Geeslin, K. (2002). The second language acquisition of copula choice and its relationship to language change. Studies in Second Language Acquisition 24, (3), 419-451.
  • Geeslin, K. (2002). Semantic transparency as a predictor of copula choice in second language acquisition.  Linguistics: An Interdisciplinary Journal of the Language Sciences, 40 (2), 439-468.
  • Geeslin, K. (2001). Changing norms, moving targets and the SLA of copula choice.  Spanish Applied Linguistics, 5 (1-2), 29-55.

Honors & Awards

  • College of Arts and Sciences, David and Cheryl Morley Career Distinguished Teaching Award (2019)
  • College Arts & Humanities Institute, grant to support roundtable speakers at Current Approaches to Spanish and Portuguese Second Language Phonology (CASPSLaP), Fall 2017
  • Faculty Research Support Program – Seed Funding, grant to support project on “Psycholinguistic processing of variable structures in second language Spanish,” Fall 2015
  • Indiana University Trustee’s Teaching Award (2001-2002, 2007-2008, 2011-2012)
  • Department of Spanish & Portuguese, GSAC Outstanding Mentor Award, 2006, 2012
  • Indiana University FACET Award, 2005