SYLAP Resources

The Great Basin Indian Archives is proud to partner with the University of Utah's Shoshoni Language Project to make Shoshoni Language Resources available through the GBIA website.

2015 GBIA Elder Showing Design Elements

Returning SYLAPer Shania Cook works on a book
Photo courtesy of the University of Utah

Shoshoni Language Project
at the University of Utah

The Wick R. Miller Collection Shoshoni Language Project (SLP), directed by Marianna Di Paolo, Department of Anthropology, at the University of Utah strives to preserve Shoshone linguistic and cultural heritage.

SLP works with communities to document and preserve the Shoshoni language; disseminate learning materials to tribal members and teachers; create curricula and customized materials for various age levels, including bilingual children’s picture books; provide Shoshoni language teacher training; and assist tribal communities with grant preparation focused on language maintenance and revitalization.

2015 GBIA Elder Showing Design Elements

Shoshoni Talking Dictionary

The Shoshoni Talking Dictionary, written in the Wick R. Miller orthography, was created using the LexiquePro software.  The Talking Dictionary has thousands of entries recorded by various Shoshone elders from different dialects.

The Shoshoni Talking Dictionary project began in collaboration with the Ely Shoshone Tribe, which received an ANA grant to produce a talking dictionary based on Boyd Graham’s 2008 dictionary. Boyd Graham, who headed the project, was assisted by Bryan Hudson, Julia James and Aaron Charles in creating the first version of the Talking Dictionary. Later editing was completed by Katherine Matsumoto-Gray, Rob Sykes and Jennifer Mitchell, Sarah Arnoff, and Trent Griffith.

The Talking Dictionary is updated continuously. Because it may contain some errors, we appreciate hearing from you about your suggested corrections. Please use the contact page if you have any concerns about any of the entries.

2015 GBIA Elder Showing Design Elements

Photo courtesy of the University of Utah

SYLAP 2015

The Shoshone/Goshute Youth Language Apprenticeship Program (SYLAP) is a program that introduces Shoshone and Goshute high school students to a university setting in an accessible way with the ultimate goal of increasing their success in higher education.


The program, which was established in 2009 by Katherine Matsumoto-Gray under the direction of Marianna Di Paolo, has three main goals for students:

  • to learn how to speak the Shoshoni language and earn college credit for doing so,
  • to participating in a paid internship in Shoshoni language documentation and language teaching materials development,
  • to instill life skills and self-esteem through group activities, Shoshoni cultural activities and college preparation workshops.