Professor Dinnsen received his B.A. with distinction from Indiana University in 1969 (Spanish) and his Ph.D. in Linguistics from the University of Texas at Austin in 1972. He returned to IU to join the faculty in 1972 and later served as Chair of Linguistics for six years. Professor Dinnsen is also affiliated with the Cognitive Science Program and holds an Adjunct appointment in Speech & Hearing Sciences. He held an appointment as a Visiting Scientist at Bell Laboratories in Murray Hill, New Jersey during 1981-82.
Professor Dinnsen is a theoretical linguist with a specialization in the sound patterns of language. He is internationally recognized for his theoretical and empirical discoveries about language acquisition, especially as they relate to children with speech disorders. His publications include several edited volumes, and his articles have appeared in prestigious anthologies and peer reviewed journals.
Professor Dinnsen's research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, the American Council of Learned Societies and the National Institutes of Health. His project on the sound systems and learning patterns of young children with speech disorders received the Claude Pepper NIH Excellence Award in 1990 and has sustained continuous funding since 1985. He is on the editorial board of several acquisition journals. He was the founding Editor of Innovations in Linguistics Education, a journal devoted to an interdisciplinary approach to linguistics. The U.S. Federal Courts have also relied on Professor Dinnsen's linguistic expertise through his testimony in a number of trademark infringement cases. Professor Dinnsen attributes his successes to active connections with various disciplines and collaborations with outstanding colleagues and students who have facilitated those connections.