Testing English Phonetics

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So I’m teaching phonetics and phonology this semester and we’re using Ladefoged & Johnson’s A Course in Phonetics textbook. As I was preparing to teach about stops, I thought it might be a good idea as a homework assignment for students to gather their own data to see if some of these ideas panned out. Here’s my quick study. Read more

Laboratory Research

Recently, I’ve presented on words like pool, pull, and pole and how the difference between them can be really hard to describe, both by me and the non-specialist alike. Based on my findings in Washington, I decided I wanted to dig a little deeper into what these words are like, so I started a study that is less sociolinguistic and more laboratory phonology-based, which is a little unusual for me. Read more

Admission to Candidacy

This morning I successfully defended my second qualifying paper, “Near-Mergers in Cowlitz County, Washington,” which means I’m officially a doctoral candidate! (Okay, actually, a couple forms need to be signed, but that’s no biggie.) What an important step for me! Read more

Lots of Transcribing


Last summer, I collected roughly 40 hours of conversation from people in Washington State last year. Not an enormous corpus, but I’m quite proud of that dataset. Well, my goal was to transcribe one speaker gradually over the course of the year, finishing around now. Well, in 9 months, I’ve done about… one hour. I realized this week that I really really need to get these done. Read more

A Survey of the Western American English using MTurk

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I’m so happy to announce I’ve been selected as a recipient of the UGA Graduate School Innovative and Interdisciplinary Research Grant! This $2,500 grant is part of the Graduate School’s strategic initiative to support innovation and interdisciplinary in the research being conducted by doctoral students. My project is entitled “A Survey of Western American English using Amazon Mechanic Turk.” Read more

Brother Joseph

I had the fun opportunity to be a guest in a podcast today! "Faith Promoting Rumors" is a new podcast that my brother and dad started that explores Mormon myths and culture. Having published on an interesting linguistic quirk about Mormon culture—the alternation between calling someone either as "Brother Jones" or as "Bob"—I was asked to talk about my research and about this convention in Mormon culture generally. Read more

Mount St. Helens and Vowels

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Today in our Linguistics Colloquium here at UGA, I got to present on some of my ongoing research on English in a smaller town in Washington. For the past few months I've mostly looked at vowel mergers and using lots of statistical tests to show some very subtle changes. Over the past week or so as I've prepared for this presentation, I've discovered something pretty awesome about my data. And it has to do with Mount St. Helens! Read more

Updated mvnorm.etest() function

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In Levshina’s How to do Linguistics with R, the function mvnorm.etest() from the energy library is used. This runs what’s called the “E-statistic (Energy) Test of Multivariate Normality” which used to test whether multivariate data is normally distributed. This is important because it’s an assumption that should be met for several statistical tests like MANOVA and for testing statistical significance of a correlation. Well, the code from the book is broken. Read more

Website Version 2

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Today I finally rolled out a new version of my website! The previous version was great and was an excellent stepping stone into web design, but it was mostly borrowed code. Unsatisfied with some of the way it was designed, I decided to go ahead and just write a new site completely from scratch. It has taken about a month or so to get it going, but I think it’s a lot better than before. Read more

Excel Workshop

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Today I had the opportunity to give a workshop in the DigiLab in UGA's main library. It was a packed with librarians and grad students from across campus. In just over an hour, I started with the absolute basics and showed more and more tricks that I think would help people with their research projects. Read more


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Last weekend, I had the opportunity to present at the 2017 Annual Meeting of the American Dialect Society, as well as attend the other meetings of the Linguistic Society of America annual meeting in Austin, TX. There were a lot of really awesome things about the whole thing. Read more

Brand Yourself

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Today Emily McGinn of the Digital Humanities Lab at UGA and I did a professionalization workshop for grad students. We gave a presentation on different ways grad students can boost their online presence through building a personal webpage, utilizing social media, and finding your field's conversation. We then let the attendees a chance to work on their own to create a new online profile, using what they learned. Read more


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I’m excited to announce I’ve been accepted to present at the first iteration of the Diversity and Variation in Language Conference (DiVar1), which will be held at Emory University in Atlanta February 10–11. I’m excited to hear that many of my colleagues at UGA have also been accepted, so it should be a fun day for us. Read more

Making a website is fun!

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In the past month or so I’ve been putting a lot of time and effort into increasing my professional web presence. In about a year I’ll be applying for academic positions, and it would sure be nice to be more visible to my potential employers. The sheer fact that you’re reading this means you’ve seen some of the fruits of my labor. Read more


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As a part of my assistantship this year, I get to work with the DigiLab in the Main Library at UGA. It’s a fun little gig where I get to do presentations, workshops, and seminars on digital humanities, in addition to helping researchers one-on-one on their own projects. Read more