Department of Psychology

Department of


Department of


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Stanka Fitneva

Photo of Stanka Fitneva

Associate Professor

B.A., Smith College, 1996
Ph.D., Cornell University 2003

T: 613.533.2363

349 Humphrey Hall
Psychology Department
Queen's University
Kingston, ON K7L 3N6

Research Interests

My research focuses on language, communication, and socio-cognitive development. I am also interested in the relations between language, culture, and cognition, and children's suggestibility.

Selected Publications

Giardini, F., Fitneva, S.A., Tamm, A. (2019). "Someone told me": Preemptive reputation protection in communication. PLoS ONE, 14(4): e0200883.

Mangardich, H. & Fitneva, S. A. (2019). Gossip, reputation, and language. In F. Giardini, & R. Wittek (Eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Gossip and Reputation. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Fitneva, S. A. (2018). The acquisition of evidentiality. In A. Aikhenvald (Ed.) The Oxford Handbook of Evidentiality (pp. 185-201). Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Fitneva, S. A., & Christiansen, M. C. (2017). Developmental changes in cross-situational word learning: The inverse effect of initial accuracy. Cognitive Science, 41, 141–161. DOI: 10.1111/cogs.12322

Fitneva, S.A., Pile Ho, E., & Hatayama, M. (2016). Japanese and Canadian children’s beliefs about child and adult knowledge: A case for developmental equifinality? PLoS ONE 11(9): e0163018. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0163018

Open Science Collaboration (2015).  Estimating the reproducibility of psychological science. Science. 349(6251). DOI: 10.1126/science.aac4716

Fitneva, S. A., & T. Matsui (2015). The emergence and development of language across cultures. In L. A. Jensen (Ed.) The Oxford Handbook of Human Development and Culture: An Interdisciplinary Perspective. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Published online October 2014. DOI: 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199948550.013.8

Fitneva, S. A. (2014). Evidential markers. In P. Brooks, & V. Kempe (Eds.), Encyclopedia of language development (pp. 204-206). Thousand Oaks: Sage.

Fitneva, S. A., Lam, N. H. L., Dunfield, K. A. (2013). The development of children’s information gathering: To look or to ask? Developmental Psychology, 49, 533-542. DOI:10.1037/a0031326

Fitneva, S. A. (2012). Beyond answers: Questions and children’s learning. In J.P. de Ruiter (Ed.) Questions: formal, functional, and interactional perspectives, (pp. 165-178). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Fitneva, S. A., & Christiansen, M. H. (2011). Looking in the wrong direction correlates with better word learning.Cognitive Science, 35, 367-380.

Monaghan, P., Christiansen, M. C., & Fitneva, S. A. (2011). Arbitrariness of the sign: Learning advantages from the structure of the vocabulary. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 140(3), 325-347.

Ceci, S.J., Fitneva, S. A., & Williams, W. M. (2010). Representational constraints on the development of memory and metamemory: A developmental-representational synthesis. Psychological Review, 117, 464-495.

Fitneva, S. A. (2010). Children's representation of child and adult knowledge. Journal of Cognition and Development, 11, 458-484.

Fitneva, S. A., & Dunfield, K. A. (2010). Selective information seeking after a single encounter. Developmental Psychology, 46(5), 1380-1384.

Monaghan, P., Christiansen, M. C., Farmer, T. A., & Fitneva, S. A. (2010). Measures of phonological typicality: Robust coherence and psychological validity. The Mental Lexicon, 5, 281-299.

Fitneva, S. A. (2009). Evidentiality and trust: The role of informational goals. New Directions for Child and Adolescent Development, 125, 49-61.

Fitneva, S. A., Christiansen, M. H., & Monaghan, P. (2009) From sound to syntax: phonological constraints on children's lexical categorization of new words. Journal of Child Language 36(5), 967-997.

Fitneva, S. A., & Song, Y. (2009). The comprehension of "left" and "right" in a referential communication task. In N.A. Taatgen & H. van Rijn (Eds.), Proceedings of the 31th Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society (pp. 2687-2691). Cognitive Science Society.

Matsui, T., & Fitneva, S. A., (2009). How do we know what we know: evidentiality in cognitive development New Directions for Child and Adolescent Development, 125, 1-11.

Fitneva, S. A. (2008). Evidentiality in Bulgarian children's reliability judgments. Journal of Child Language 35(4), 845-868. (Download pdf)

Fitneva, S. A. & Spivey, M. J. (2004). Context and language processing: The effect of authorship. In J. Trueswell & M. Tanenhaus (Eds.), World Situated Language Use: Psycholinguistic, Linguistic and Computational Perspectives on Bridging the Product and Action Traditions, (pp. 317-327). Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

Spivey, M. J., Richardson, D. C., & Fitneva, S. A. (2004). Memory outside of the brain: oculomotor indexes to visual and linguistic Information. In J. Henderson and F. Ferreira (Eds.), The Interface of Language, Vision, and Action: Eye Movements and the Visual World (pp. 161-189). New York: Psychology Press.

Fitneva, S. A. (2001). Epistemic marking and reliability judgments: Evidence from Bulgarian. Journal of Pragmatics, 33(3), 401-420.