Joan Rahilly


  • Room 02.003 - 3 University Square

    United Kingdom

Accepting PhD Students

PhD projects

Phonetics; Phonology; Clinical phonetics and linguistics; Irish English; Literacy

1988 …2023

Research activity per year

Personal profile

Research Statement

My research interests are varied, but the common thread is effect of speech and language variation on communication. As a young researcher, I was particularly intrigued by intonational properties of speech, and spent some time probing aspects of intonational breakdown in disordered speech. I remain in pursuit of an applied understanding of speech variation, however that might be afforded. My recent research has looked at child language acquisition in Ireland, the development of multilayered transcriptions of speech, realisations of a stigmatised lexical variant, and at the effects of accents in advertising upon Northern-Irish audiences. My latest publications include work on intelligibility issues in educational contexts, vowel production in deafness, and speech imaging techniques.


My teaching focuses on phonetics and phonology, with emphasis on aspects of disordered speech and on varieties of English in Ireland. I offer specialist modules at undergraduate level which introduce students to speech production and variation and, from there, to more sophisticated methods for analysing data and profiling speech systems. I also co-deliver the first year programme in Language, with sessions on language and education, child language acquisition, language disorder, conversation analysis, and the communicative dimensions of language across a range of contexts. My postgraduate teaching and doctoral supervision equips students with key research and applied skills in phonetics and phonology, and I deliver Masters modules which deal with current trends in phonological analysis.


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