Marjorie McShane


Marjorie McShane develops cognitive models of intelligent agents that can collaborate with people in task-oriented, dialog applications. While at heart a linguist, she is particularly interested in the integration of functionalities that are often treated in isolation, such as physiological simulation, emotion modeling, and the many aspects of cognition. 

One aspect of cognition to which she has devoted particular attention is natural language processing, approached from a cross-linguistic perspective and with the goal of producing machine-tractable descriptions that can support sophisticated conversational agents. She has also worked extensively on cognitive modeling in the medical domain, to support the configuration of intelligent agents playing the roles of virtual patients and tutors in training applications such as the Maryland Virtual Patient system.

McShane has (co-)authored three books: Linguistics for the Age of AI (MIT Press, 2021), A Theory of Ellipsis (Oxford University Press, 2005), and An Innovative, Practical Approach to Polish Inflection (Lincom Europa, 2003). She has published extensively on linguistics, natural language processing, cognitive modeling, and knowledge representation.

Education & Training

PhD, Slavic Languages and Literatures, Princeton University

MA, Slavic Languages and Literatures, Princeton University

Advanced Translation Certificate, Russian-English Translation, State University of New York at Albany

MA, Russian, State University of New York at Albany

BA, Russian, Grinnell College


Other Focus Areas

linguistics, cognitive modeling, natural language processing


The following is a selection of recent publications in Scopus. Marjorie McShane has 56 indexed publications in the subjects of Computer Science, Social Sciences, Engineering.

Sergei Nirenburg, Marjorie McShane, Jesse English
Lecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics)
, 12801 LNCS
, 2021
, pp.24-29
Marjorie McShane, Selmer Bringsjord, James Hendler, Sergei Nirenburg, Ron Sun
Topics in Cognitive Science
, 11
, 2019
, pp.914-917
Marjorie McShane, Stephen Beale, Irene Nirenburg
Proceedings of the 41st Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society: Creativity + Cognition + Computation, CogSci 2019
, 2019
, pp.796-802
Marjorie McShane, Sergei Nirenburg
Applied Ontology
, 14
, 2019
, pp.415-449
Marjorie McShane
Lingvisticae Investigationes
, 41
, 2018
, pp.179-212
Sergei Nirenburg, Marjorie McShane, Stephen Beale, Peter Wood, Brian Scassellati, Olivier Magnin, Alessandro Roncone
Lecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics)
, 10859 LNCS
, 2018
, pp.73-82
Marjorie McShane
AI Magazine
, 38
, 2017
, pp.43-56
Sergei Nirenburg, Marjorie McShane
AAAI Spring Symposium - Technical Report
, SS-17-01 - SS-17-08
, 2017
, pp.342-346
Dan Roth, Eduard Hovy, Collin Baker, Sergei Nirenburg, Marjorie McShane
Proceedings of the 4th Workshop on Events: Definition, Detection, Coreference, and Representation, EVENTS 2016 at the 2016 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies, NAACL-HLT 2016
, 2016
, pp.III
Marjorie McShane, Sergei Nirenburg, Bruce Jarrell, George Fantry
OpenAccess Series in Informatics
, 45
, 2015
, pp.108-123

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