Research interests:

  • Children’s perceptual development in understanding unfamiliar speech varieties, such as regional dialects and nonnative accents
  • Perception of indexical variables in speech including race and gender
  • Individual differences in speech perception under adverse conditions

Her research focuses on children's and adult's perception and representation of variable speech signals, with a focus on regional dialects and foreign accents.

She is also conducting research on perception of gender and race from speech.

Research in the Speech Perception Laboratory, located within the Department of Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences at Indiana University, focuses on the perceptual consequences of phonetic variability in speech. We conduct research on how a range of factors -- including nonnative accents, regional dialects, gender, and race -- influence word recognition, cognitive representation, and adaptation in children and adults.


  • Children's perception of nonnative accents and regional dialects
  • Influence of gender on speech perception- How gender expectations influence speech intelligibility 
  • Perception of race from speech: Interaction of regional dialect and race in speech perception
  • Speech naturalness in speakers of Varying gender identities
  • Identification of race and regional dialect
  • Intelligibility of speech in hospital noise
  • Intelligibility of speech from speakers with aphasia

Research Interests:

  • Developmental speech perception: Children’s perception of speech, including the cognitive-linguistic skills underlying the ability to perceive dialects and accents.
  • Perceptual learning: Listeners’ adaptation to variability in the speech signal, including foreign-accented speech and degraded speech.
  • Speech intelligibility: The influence of factors about the talker, listener, and listening environment on communication success.
  • Hearing loss, dyslexia, and bilingualism: The influence of hearing loss, dyslexia, and bilingualism on the perception of speech.

I am interested in how listeners adapt to the variability present in the speech signal, how this learning can best be facilitated, and how children develop the ability to accurately and effortlessly perceive highly variable speech signals, including foreign-accented speech.

Audiology, Speech-Language Pathology, Cognitive Science, Linguistics
PhD, Northwestern University, Linguistics, 2005
BA, Millersville University, English, 1998