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Experimental Phonetics & Phonology Research Area

Faculty of Modern and Medieval Languages and Linguistics


Experimental Phonetics and Phonology Past Events

Past Cluster Events



Weekly Phonetics and Phonology Seminars

17. March 2014: Workshop: Connected Speech Processes

26. June 2012: Workshop: Categories and Gradience: Neural Systems for Speech Communication

Weekly Phonetics and Phonology Seminars

The Phonetics and Phonology seminars give PhD and MPhil students and staff members in the cluster the opportunity to present their current state of research in a constructively critical environment. Here they receive feedback from lecturers and students, and can raise questions about areas they are not certain about. Visiting academics in the department also contribute, and sometimes we invite a speaker from outside the cluster, for example to give insight into job opportunities for those with a phonetics degree.
The session is usually followed by further "research training" where ideas are exchanged and skills acquired - in a nearby public house.


  • Michaelmas term
  • 15.10.2013: Francis Nolan: Phonetics: giving interdisciplinarity a good name
  • 22.10.2013: Bert Vaux: Dangers of interdisciplinarity: a phonologist's take on Articulatory Phonology
  • 29.10.2013: Calbert Graham: Revisiting f0 range in Japanese English bilinguals
  • 05.11.2013: Aike Li: L2 Acquisition of English Speech Rhythm
  • 12.11.2013: Meg Zellers (KTH Stockholm): Exploring prosody in conversation: combining structural and interactional features
  • 19.11.2013: Joe Perry: Tone sandhi in Yixing Chinese (a Wu dialect)
  • 26.11.2013: Yvonne Flory: Can you tell when someone is lying down, just from their speech? Changes in the acoustic speech signal in different body orientations
  • 03.12.2013: Brechtje Post & Francis Nolan: Praat introductory session
  • Lent term
  • 21.01.2014: Martin Duckworth (Duckworth Consultancy Ltd) & Kirsty McDougall: Can fluency disruptions assist the forensic phonetician?
  • 28.01.2014: Marta Maffia (University of Naples "L'Orientale"): Expressive (Inter)language: an acoustic and perceptual analysis of emotional speech in L1-L2 Italian
  • 04.02.2014: Tam Blaxter: The Trudgill Conjecture and language change in Old and Middle Norwegian
  • 11.02.2014: Gerry Kwek: Innovations in the realisations and phonotactics of /r/ in Singapore English(es): a proposal and pilot study
  • 18.02.2014: Imme Lammertink (Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen): Turn-taking in Dutch and English toddlers: the use of lexicosyntactic and/or intonational cues
  • 25.02.2014: Francis Nolan: Lateral developments in Estonian Swedish
  • 25.02.2014: Peter French (JP French Associates): Automatic speaker recognition systems: what can we do to help them?
  • 25.02.2014: Laura Smith (Brigham Young University): The effect of L1 and L2 dialect on L2 perception and pronunciation
  • Easter term
  • 29.04.2014: Annika Nijveld (Radboud University, Nijmegen): What is the role of exemplars in speech comprehension?
  • 06.05.2014: Ricky Chan: Speaker variability in the realisation of Cantonese tones
  • 13.05.2014: Anssi Yli-Jyrä (U. Helsinki, Dept. of Modern Languages; currently Dept. of Engineering, U. Cambridge): Generalizing a Finite-State Approach to Autosegmental Tonology to Match the Needs of Intonational Phonology
  • 20.05.2014: Anatoly Nikolaev (North-Eastern Federal University (former Yakutsk State University), Siberia): Intonational transfer of communicative sentence types in a multilingual classroom situation
  • 03.06.2014: Anna Jespersen: The perception of Sydney Aboriginal English
  • 10.06.2014: Ellen Aalders (Radboud University, Nijmegen): Dealing with schwa reduction in L1 and L2: the role of fine acoustic traces
  • 17.06.2014: Imme Lammertink (Radboud University, Nijmegen): Morphosyntactic and prosodic cues in the development of predictive processing for conversation
  • 24.06.2014: Elaine Schmidt: Prosodic acquisition in simultaneous bilinguals - rhythm and contributing phonological factors



  • Michaelmas term
  • 23.10.12: Discussion of papers on the interplay of speech perception and phonology
  • 30.10.12: Maria Kunevich: Investigating L2 learning of focus marking
  • 06.11.12: Anthony Bond: Scottish /r/-loss and associated pharyngealisation
  • 20.11.12 Jill Patterson: Grenadian Creole
  • Lent term
  • 29.01.2013: Yvonne Flory: The effects of different head positions on the speech signal
  • 05.02.2013: Marianna Kaimaki: Devoicing in Greek vowels
  • 12.02.2013: Katie Harris: 'Given' intonation in Italian and English leaners of English and Italian, respectively
  • 19.02.2013: Anna Jespersen: Sydney Aboriginal English: a distinct variety?
  • 26.02.2013: Aly Pitts (Autonomy, Cambridge): Phonetics in industry
  • 05.03.2013: Weijing Zhou (Jiangsu University of Science and Technology): Phonetics of Zhejiang dialect
  • Easter term
  • 30.04.2013: Marianna Kaimaki: Falls and rises in conversation
  • 07.05.2013: Faith Chiu: Laryngeal phonetics and phonology
  • 14.05.2013: Anna Bruggeman: The prosody of Burkina Faso French
  • 21.05.2013: Kammie Lau: Looking for intonational cues in particled declarative and interrogative utterances in Cantonese
  • 04.06.2013: Elaine Schmidt and Brechtje Post: L1 prosodic development of Spanish-English monolingual and simultaneous bilingual children

17. March 2013: Workshop: Connected Speech Processes

University of Cambridge, Experimental Phonetics and Phonology Research Cluster

We are excited to announce our cluster workshop on the topic of connected speech processes on 17th of March 2014, with a keynote talk by Prof. Mirjam Ernestus (Radboud University Nijmegen & Max Plank Institute for Psycholinguistics).
We would like to welcome anyone who is interested to join us for a range of talks on different aspects of connected speech processes such as assimilation and reduction.
Have a look at our programme here.

Workshop theme
Processes of assimilation and reduction are of enormous importance to both phoneticians and phonologists, and indeed represent one of the most fruitful areas for the study of the phonetics-phonology interface. The study of these connected speech processes in the context of running speech has been a key pursuit for phoneticians. They are important as they provide insights into the underlying nature and organisation of speech and although themes such as the interaction between stress and vowel reduction have been a hub for phonetic research, there is still much to be learned. What causes reduction and which factors constrain its appearance in running speech? How do reduced forms vary across languages? And how do psychological and social factors come into play? For phonologists, assimilation and reduction constitute the most primitive and universal feature-manipulating operations, appearing in some form in every known language, whether in the guise of vowel harmony, tone sandhi, nasal assimilation or cluster homorganicity, or as syncope, apocope, lenition or neutralisation. Phonological phenomena such as these are in themselves linked to phonetic processes, an important consideration in the study of historical processes of phonologisation and sound change.

Invited Speaker
Mirjam Ernestus is Professor of Psycholinguistics at Radboud University Nijmegen and is also affiliated with the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics. She is interested in all aspects of language processing, while her main focus is on how speakers produce and how listeners understand speech in informal conversations. She currently directs two large research projects on how non-native listeners process the reduced pronunciation variants of words that occur so frequently in casual speech.

Organising Committee
Anna Jespersen, Geraldine Kwek, Joseph Perry, Yvonne Flory

26. June 2012: Workshop: Categories and Gradience: Neural Systems for Speech Communication

University of Cambridge, Experimental Phonetics and Phonology Research Cluster

We are delighted to announce a one-day workshop on Neural Systems for Speech Communication to be held at the Department of Theoretical and Applied Linguistics, University of Cambridge, UK, on the 26th June 2012. The focus of the workshop is on representations and neural mechanisms for segmentation, abstraction, and categorisation in speech processing.

Our invited speakers are


The workshop is intended to provide a forum for discussion between researchers who approach the neurocognitive processing of suprasegmental and segmental information in speech from different intellectual contexts (notably linguistics, audition, language psychology, and cognitive neuroscience), and with different methodologies. A number of key papers will explore the theme of the workshop from different angles, complemented by poster presentations that add breadth or depth to the discussion. The presentations will be followed by a panel discussion with the invited speakers and the audience towards the end of the day. The discussion will explore commonalities and differences in theoretical and methodological approaches and their findings, trying to work towards a synthesis.

Abstract submission deadline: 21 May 2012

We invite papers which address the theme of the workshop:


  • Abstracts should be uploaded on or before 21 May 2012 here.
  • Abstracts should be no longer than 300 words, in pdf or doc (but not docx) format, with 2.5cm or one inch margins, single-spaced, and with a font size of 12pt.
  • Your abstract should be anonymous. You will be asked to submit a version with your name and affiliation on it if your abstract is selected for presentation. Please make sure that you do not use your name in the filename for your abstract, and please erase any details which might identify you in the file that you submit. Use one word from your abstract's title as the filename.
  • If you need to use a phonetic font in your abstract, please either embed it in a pdf file, or use the Doulos SIL font.


Abstracts will be considered for oral or poster presentations, but please note that only very few slots are available for oral presentation. If you wish your abstract to be considered for poster presentation only, please indicate this when submitting your abstract. Oral presentations will be 20 minutes, with 10 minutes for questions.

Paper acceptance notification will be sent by email by 4 June 2012. Information on registration, workshop programme, accommodation and conference dinner will appear on the workshop website.

Please email if you require additional information.

Organisers: Brechtje Post, Emmanuel Stamatakis, Francis Nolan, Bettina Beinhoff, Hae-Sung Jeon, Toby Hudson

This workshop is funded by the ESRC grant 'Categories and Gradience in Intonation: Evidence from Linguistics and Neurobiology' (RES-061-25-0347; PI Post, CI Stamatakis).