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Kevin Watson

Executive Dean - Arts

Amo Matua, Toi Tangata

Faculty of Arts

17 October 2023

Qualifications & Memberships

  • Doctor of Philosophy (University of Lancaster)
  • British Association of Academic Phoneticians (BAAP) (Professional Organisation): Member

  • International Association for Forensic Phonetics and Acoustics (IAFPA) (Professional Organisation): Member

  • International Phonetic Association (IPA) (Professional Organisation): Member

  • International Society for the Linguistics of English (ISLE) (Professional Organisation): Member

  • Linguistics Assocation of Great Britain (LAGB) (Professional Organisation): Member


Research Interests

I am interested in the way language works, in how language is shaped by our social lives, and in how it can affect our thoughts and behaviour. My main research is in the area of sociolinguistics, which means I work to understand the complex relationships between society and language. Specifically, I use large databases of language, called corpora, and experimental methodologies to examine language production & perception and sound change. I have published on the accents of north-west England and New Zealand, and also on variation in learning English as a second language.

  • phonetics
  • phonology
  • sociolinguistics
  • accents and dialects
  • British English
  • New Zealand English


Recent Publications

  • Brand J., Hay J., Clark L., Watson K. and Sóskuthy M. (2021) Systematic co-variation of monophthongs across speakers of New Zealand English. Journal of Phonetics 88 101096: 101096-101096.
  • Rashid S., Howard J., Cunningham U. and Watson K. (2021) Learner training in MALL: a Pakistani case study. Innovation in Language Learning and Teaching 15(2): 181-194.
  • Villarreal D., Clark L., Hay J. and Watson K. (2021) Gender separation and the speech community: Rhoticity in early 20th century Southland New Zealand English. Language Variation and Change 33(2): 245-266.
  • Villarreal D., Clark L., Hay J. and Watson K. (2020) From categories to gradience: Auto-coding sociophonetic variation with random forests. Laboratory Phonology 11(1) 6
  • Heyne M., Wang X., Derrick D., Dorreen K. and Watson KD. (2018) The articulation of /ɹ/ in New Zealand English. Journal of the International Phonetic Association Online First
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