Dr. William Gardner

Dr. William Gardner

Assistant Professor of Linguistics at Tyndale

Bill has lived almost half of his life outside of North America. He became a Christian during high school in the Philippines through a Baptist missionary after having read C.S. Lewis’ Mere Christianity. He initially studied Electrical Engineering at university, then worked for five years with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship. It was during this time that he and his wife Lori became interested in Linguistics and Bible Translation and joined Wycliffe.

Bill and his wife Lori worked for 19 years in Africa, which included teaching, language assessment and orthography development in the countries of Congo-Brazzaville, Mozambique and Kenya. He is an SIL Africa linguistics consultant and a licensed minister of the Evangelical Covenant Church of Canada. Their two sons live in California, each with his wife and young son, our two grandsons.

Bill loves phonology, theology, and the beauty of British Columbia. He enjoys the ethos and community at CanIL, and the opportunity to train and mentor others for various roles in Bible translation and minority language development all around the world.

Interesting facts: Bill is familiar with 6 languages: besides English, he is fairly proficient in (continental) Portuguese and French, and is  familiar with Koine Greek, ancient Hebrew and  Swahili. Along with USA and Canada, Bill and Lori have lived in Kenya (9+ years), Mozambique (7+ years), Philippines (3+ years), Congo-Brazzaville (2 years), Portugal (18 months), and France (6 months).


2005-10. Ph.D. in Intercultural Studies, Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena, CA

1991-92. “Diploma de Língua e Cultura Portuguesa” Universidade de Lisboa (Portugal), Faculdade de Letras

1983-1990. Master of Arts in Linguistics, University of North Dakota, Grand Forks. Thesis Title: “Language Use in Northern Congo”

1988. “Diplôme Élémentaire de Langue Française” Centre Audio-Visuel de Langues Modernes, Vichy, France

1987. Africa Orientation Course of SIL in Kenya
1987. Intermediate Portuguese language study, PortInglis, Carnaxide, Portugal
1986. Introductory Portuguese language study, C.I.A.L. Centro de Línguas, Lisbon, Portugal

1981, 1984-85. Master of Christian Studies (Biblical Studies specialization, New College for Advanced Christian Studies, Berkeley, California

1975-79. B.Sc.in Electrical Engineering with Highest Honours, University of California at Davis

Professional Experience

2014. (Summer) Lecturer in Linguistic Field Methods for SIL, University of North Dakota
2013. i-DELTA Domain Leader, Nairobi, Kenya
2010-2012. Anglophone i-DELTA Course Director, Nairobi, Kenya

2001-2005, 2007-2009. Lecturer in Bible and Translation Studies, Pan Africa Christian University, Nairobi, Kenya

2006. Adjunct Lecturer in Applied Linguistics/Translation Biola University, La Mirada, California
1999-2000. Literacy Coordinator and Linguistic Coordinator, SIL-Mozambique

1996-1999. Treasurer, Survey Coordinator, and Liaison to University and Ministry of Education for SIL-Mozambique

Summers 1990, 1991, 1995. Teaching Assistant in Phonology 1 and 2 and Syntax 1 for SIL, University of North Dakota, Grand Forks

1992-1995. Lecturer in Phonetics and Translation Theory Universidade Eduardo Mondlane, Maputo, Mozambique

1993-1995. Country Director for SIL-Mozambique (Eastern Africa Group

1988-1990. Administrative assistant and language survey work for SIL Brazzaville, Congo (Central Africa Group)

1979-1984. Campus Staff Member for InterVarsity Christian Fellowship at California State University, Sacramento, and University of Nevada

Academic Research, Conferences & Publications

2013. Presented paper at Phonetics and Phonology of Sub-Saharan Languages conference at Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa on “Morphophonemic alternations in the initial consonants of stems in Olunyole, a Luyia Bantu Language”

2010. Dissertation: “Toward Transcultural Training in Phonological Processes for Bantu Language Mother Tongue Translators,” Pasadena: Fuller Theological Seminary

2000. Member of Bantu Initiative Technical Committee, coordinated by SIL
1998. Led the Ndau language survey in central Mozambique
1995-1999. Research on the phonology and orthography of the Ndau language

1988-1989. Participated in the Babole language survey and led the Bomitaba survey in northern Congo (Brazzaville)


2006. “Language Use in the Epena District of Northern Congo,” in SIL Electronic Survey Reports (http://www.sil.org/silesr/2006/silesr2006-005.pdf)

2004. “An Introduction to the Phonology of New Testament Greek and Old Testament Hebrew,” in SIL-Mozambique Working Papers, Vol. 3

2004. SIL Electronic Book Review of: “Ikalanga phonetics and phonology: a synchronic and diachronic study,” by Joyce T. Mathangwane

2001. “Orthography Challenges in Bantu Languages,” in Notes on Literacy, Vol. 27, #4
2000. “Consonant Mutation in Shona Languages,” in SIL-Mozambique Working Papers, Vol. 2
1991. “Toward a Theology of Translation,” in Notes on Translation, Vol. 5, #3


2014. Licensed Minister with the Evangelical Covenant Church
2013. Certified Linguistics Consultant with SIL Africa


Portuguese and French, good proficiency
Koine Greek and ancient Hebrew, reading ability
Swahili, conversant


LING 330 Phonological Analysis

LING 4/593 OL Semantics & Pragmatics


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