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Faculty of Modern and Medieval Languages and Linguistics


Dr Kirsty McDougall

Associate Professor of Phonetics
Theoretical and Applied Linguistics
Faculty of Modern & Medieval Languages & Linguistics
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Kirsty McDougall is Associate Professor of Phonetics in the Theoretical and Applied Linguistics Section, and a Fellow of Selwyn College. She is a phonetician, with particular interests in speaker characteristics, forensic phonetics, and the phonetic realisation of varieties of English. Her research has, among other things, highlighted the importance of dynamic as opposed to static features of speech (particularly formant frequencies) for characterising differences between speakers, and developed robust techniques for the selection of foils for voice parades. Dr McDougall is also interested in sociophonetic variation in English, and has undertaken various studies of consonant realisation in Australian English.

Dr McDougall has an ongoing programme of research investigating the potential of disfluency features to distinguish speakers. In collaboration with Martin Duckworth, she has developed and implemented TOFFA ('Taxonomy of Fluency features for Forensic Analysis') a methodology for the analysis of fluency behaviour in forensic casework.

Kirsty is currently Principal Investigator on the ESRC-funded project IVIP (‘Improving Voice Identification Procedures’), an interdisciplinary project bringing together researchers in linguistics, psychology, criminology and law, with the aims of improving understanding of earwitness behaviour and improving the interaction of the criminal justice system with the use of earwitness evidence.