Law & Corpus Linguistics

2022 Conference

The seventh annual Law & Corpus Linguistics Conference (February 3-4) brings together legal scholars from across various substantive areas of scholarship, prominent corpus linguistics scholars, and judges who have employed corpus linguistics analysis in their decisions.

Call for Papers:
7th Annual Law & Corpus Linguistics Conference


Event Date: February 3-4, 2022

Location: Brigham Young University, Provo, UT

Organization: Brigham Young University

Brigham Young University Law School will host the Seventh Annual Law & Corpus Linguistics Conference in Provo, UT on February 3-4, 2022.

Registration is now open for the 7th Annual Law & Corpus Linguistics Conference to be held February 3-4, 2022 at Brigham Young University’s J. Reuben Clark Law School in Provo, Utah. There is no registration fee for this event. Preliminary programming information is included below.


Participants who wish to be included in conference meals should register by December 31st.

We are also pleased to announce the availability of a limited number of travel grants for graduate students wishing to attend the conference. Interested students should email with their name, university and a brief paragraph describing their interest in Law & Corpus Linguistics.

For additional information, please reach out to with any questions.

Linguist Workshop: Registration available here

Event Date: February 3-4, 2022

Location: Brigham Young University, Provo, UT

Organization: Brigham Young University


Linguist Workshop

The 7th Annual Law & Corpus Linguistics Conference hosted by the BYU (Brigham Young University) J. Reuben Clark Law School is excited to be offering a workshop for any attending linguists on Thursday, February 3rd 2022 from 1pm to 4pm (MDT). This workshop will be led by BYU law and linguistics faculty and is meant to give an introduction to the field of law as well as describe issues that those in the legal field often encounter that corpus linguistics has been or could be used to address.  We would like to make a special invitation particularly to any graduate students or early career scholars who are interested in applying linguistics in addressing legal issues, including issues related to statutory interpretation as well as communication between the legal community and the general public (e.g. Miranda rights, jury instructions, immigrant interviews, etc.)

This workshop is being offered free of charge. A catered lunch will also be provided to any attendees at 12pm prior to the workshop. We hope that you will consider attending this highly meaningful educational opportunity. Additionally, we are currently working on obtaining funding to support travel grants and are optimistic that we will be able to assist in supporting those with particular need or interest to attend the conference.

If you are interested in attending this workshop, please complete the registration form.

Event Date: February 3rd, 2022 from 1pm-4pm

Location: Brigham Young University, Provo, UT

Organization: Brigham Young University


Law & Corpus Linguistics Project

The Project

BYU Law’s Law & Corpus Linguistics was initially inspired by Stephen C. Mouritsen’s BYU Law Review Note, The Dictionary Is Not a Fortress: Definitional Fallacies and a Corpus-Based Approach to Plain Meaning, (2010). As various scholars began to apply corpus linguistic to legal questions, BYU’s Linguistics Professor Mark Davies’ well known Corpus of Contemporary American English (COCA) and Corpus of Historical American English (COHA) proved invaluable.

Following the development of formal Law & Corpus Linguistics course at the Law School in the Fall of 2013, the BYU Law Library started providing limited support for students in the class and faculty applying corpus linguistics to their scholarship such as Gordon Smith.

Research Platform

James Philips, a visiting assistant professor in Winter of 2015 , envisioned the creation of a simplified research platform and the creation of a Corpus of Founding Era American English (COFEA). Initial texts were gathered throughout 2015 and 2016 and in the Fall of 2016 the initial design of the Law & Corpus Linguistics Platform commenced.