Signe Rix Berthelin

Assistant Professor and PhD Candidate in Linguistics Department of Language and Literature
+47 94297911

Background and activities

Academic interests:

  • Semantics and pragmatics
  • Relevance Theory
  • Inuit language; Alaskan Iñupiaq and Inuvialuktun
  • Language revitalization and language learning materials
  • Fieldwork, methods and ethics
  • Modality and evidentiality
  • Pragmatic particles



  • Utqiagvik, 2011 (Alaska, USA)
  • Inuvik, 2014, 2015 (Northwest Territories, Canada)


Current projects:

► The Meaning and Function of Norwegian Tags 

Researcher within the project The meaning and Function of Norwegian Tags led by Kaja Borthen.


► Inuvialuktun language learning materials

Inuvialuktun stories and grammar. In collaboration with Panigavluk, Mangilaluk, Kavakłuk, Agnagullak, Suvvatchiaq and Mimirlina. Download booklets.


PhD Thesis (defended December 2017):

The Semantics and Pragmatics of Uummarmiutun Modals
Main supervisor: Kaja Borthen (NTNU)
Co-supervisors: Kasper Boye (University of Copenhagen) and Alana Johns (University of Toronto).

The thesis gives a semantic and pragmatic account of modal expressions in Inuvialuktun. The analyses inform the development of a framework which allows for comparison of the semantic-pragmatic division of labor in modal expressions. Another important goal of the project is to contribute with popular scientific materials which can be used by language learners in the Inuvialuit Settlement Region in Canada, where Uummarmiutun is spoken. I work together with Inuvialuit Elders Panigavluk, Mangilaluk, Kavakluk, Agnagullak, Suvvatchiaq and Mimirlina.

The project is kindly supported by the Faculty of Humanities and the Department of Language and Literature at NTNU and by the Aurora Research Institute, and LingPhil



MA Thesis (defended 2012):

The Semantics and Pragmatics of the North Slope Iñupiaq Postbase niqMA Thesis



  • EXFAC0017 - Introduction to the Humanities, Language and Literature studies
  • LING1114 - Pragmatikk
  • LING 3309 - Pragmatics
  • LING 1115 - Introduction to Phonology and General Linguistic Tools (morphology lectures)
  • Mini Course in Semantic Field Methods (presentation for MA students)
  • Student assistant in Pragmatics and Phonology, MA level


Other positions:

  • 2014. Member of NOKUT's expert panel for Sámi Allaskuvla's PhD program in Sámi Language and Literautre.



Publications are also available at Academia

Scientific, academic and artistic work

Displaying a selection of activities. See all publications in the database

Journal publications

  • Borthen, Kaja; Berthelin, Signe Rix; Thomassen, Gøril. (2012) Om det uuttalte - det relevansteoretiske implikaturbegrepet i møte med autentiske data. Norsk lingvistisk tidsskrift. vol. 30 (1).

Part of book/report

  • Berthelin, Signe Rix. (2017) Towards a Relevance-Theoretic Account of the Iñupiaq Hearsay Evidential Guuq. Applications of Relevance Theory From Discourse to Morphemes.


  • Berthelin, Signe Rix; Borthen, Kaja. (2012) The Semantics and Pragmatics of the North Slope Iñupiaq postbase 'niq'. 2012.


  • Berthelin, Signe Rix. (2016) Modality in Relevance Theory - Papafragou’s (2000) model and Uummarmiutun modals. BETWEEN (STABLE) MEANINGS AND (UNSTABLE) INTERPRETATIONS . Department of Linguistic Pragmatics and Theory of Translatio; Krakow. 2016-09-15 - 2016-09-16.
  • Berthelin, Signe Rix. (2016) On two Inupiatun hearsay expressions. 19th Annual Workshop on Amarican Indigenous Languages . University of California Santa Barbara; Santa Barbara. 2016-05-07 - 2016-05-08.
  • Berthelin, Signe Rix. (2016) Semantic and pragmatic fieldwork data and types of linguistic meaning. Language Documentation and Linguistic Theory 5 . School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London; London. 2016-12-03 - 2016-12-04.
  • Berthelin, Signe Rix. (2015) Collecting data for semantic and pragmatic analysis - or how to ask about subtle meaning nuances. Møte i Faggruppe for språk og kommunikasjon . Faggruppe for språk og kommunikasjon; Institutt for språk og litteratur. 2015-06-01 - 2015-06-01.
  • Berthelin, Signe Rix. (2015) How do you say 'must' in Inuvialuktun?. Public presentation. Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre. . Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre; Yellowknife, NWT. 2015-12-10 - 2015-12-10.
  • Berthelin, Signe Rix. (2015) [Interview]. Trail's End. CBC North. Yellowknife, NWT Canada [Radio]. 2015-12-10.
  • Berthelin, Signe Rix. (2014) How do you say 'must' in Uummarmiutun?. Aurora Research Institute 50th Aniversary Speaker Series . Aurora Research Institute; Inuvik. 2014-11-10.
  • Berthelin, Signe Rix. (2014) Language. Presentation for High School class. East Three Secondary School . East Three Secondary School; Inuvik. 2014-10-09 - 2014-10-09.
  • Berthelin, Signe Rix. (2014) On the modality of modal particles - the case of Norwegian 'jo'. Chronos 11 11th International Conference on Actionality, Tense, Aspect, Modality/Evidentiality . Scuola Normale Superiore; Pisa. 2014-06-16 - 2014-06-18.
  • Berthelin, Signe Rix; Borthen, Kaja; Knudsen, Cecilie Slinning. (2013) Midtstillet 'jo' - semantiske og pragmatiske aspekter. Møter om norsk språk (MONS) . Universitetet i Oslo; Oslo. 2013-11-21 - 2013-11-23.
  • Berthelin, Signe Rix. (2012) The epistemic postbase niq in North Slope Iñupiaq. 11th International Conference of Nordic and General Linguistics . Nordic Association of Linguists; Freiburg. 2012-04-18 - 2012-04-20.
  • Berthelin, Signe Rix. (2011) Evidentiality and Field methods. Lecture (Department of Linguistics/Alaska Native Language Center) . Alaska Native Language Center; University of Alaska, Fairbanks. 2011-11-21 - 2011-11-21.
  • Berthelin, Signe Rix. (2011) Linguistics – the Study of Language. Class visit at Barrow High School . Barrow Arctic Science Consortium; Barrow High School, Alaska. 2011-11-16.