Lab Director

Rajka Smiljanic (PI)


Graduate Students

Sandie Keerstock, LIN
Sandie is a third year Ph.D. student in Linguistics at the University of Texas at Austin. Her research focuses on intelligibility, in particular the effects of speech clarity on memory retention. She enjoys anything science-fiction related and singing in noraebang (karaoke).




Kirsten Meemann, LIN
Kirsten is a third year Ph.D. student in Linguistics at the University of Texas at Austin. Her research focuses on speech perception and language processing. In particular, she is interested in the effect of clear speech and different types of noise on speech perception, and in the role of cognitive mechanisms to cope with such noise. In her spare time, she enjoys reading thrillers, listening to podcasts, and running (despite the Texas heat).




Steven Alcorn, SPN

Steven is a fifth year Ph.D. student in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese studying second language acquisition and bilingualism. His current research examines vowel epenthesis in Brazilian Portuguese and how conflicting phonotactic constraints affect perception and production of consonant clusters Portuguese-English bilinguals. His hobbies include playing and watching sports, visiting museums and exploring Central Texas.


Undergraduate Students

Jai Lyn Pena
Jailyn is a Linguistics and Korean double major in her third year at the University of Texas at Austin. After graduation, she plans to teach English abroad in the Republic of Korea. Jailyn enjoys painting, creative writing and taking long walks in her spare time. This is her second semester as part of the Phonetics lab at UT.




Irene Smith
ireneutsoundlabIrene is in her fourth year at UT Austin, double-majoring in Linguistics and Electrical Engineering. This is Irene’s third year in the UT SoundLab, she especially enjoys sharing the SoundLab’s research with the broader UT community. After graduation, she plans to attend graduate school to study computational phonetics and phonology. Outside of her academic life, Irene enjoys weaving fabric on her big Swedish loom, feeding raisins and acorns to her pet goat Ferdinand, and rambling around her family’s homestead west of Austin to learn about the resident plants and animals.



Kevin Lilley
pic_wordpressKevin is a Linguistics and Psychology double major and a graduating senior at UT Austin. Kevin will continue to study phonetics and phonology in graduate school in Fall 2018. He is an amateur cook, interested mostly in Italian cuisine, making bread and pasta by hand. In his spare time, Kevin enjoys learning language, maintaining some proficiency in Spanish, Italian, and American Sign Language. Recently, he has spent time learning the Welsh language. Kevin is in his second semester with the UTSoundLab in Spring 2018.


Gabrielle Shaddock

Gabby Bio Photo

Gabrielle is a second year Linguistics major at the University of Texas at Austin. After graduation, she plans to attend graduate school to study phonetics and phonology. In her free time, Gabrielle enjoys playing music, learning languages, and playing board games. As of Spring 2018, Gabrielle is in her first semester with the UTSoundLab.



Luis De La Cruz 

Luis is 3rd year undergraduate at UT Austin, double majoring in English and Linguistics, minoring in French, and pursuing certificates in Creative Writing and Native American/Indigenous Studies. Outside of his studies, he enjoys reading, going to the movies, listening to music from around the world, and trying (mostly unsuccessfully) to get better at chess. He began working with the Sound Lab in Spring 2017.



Sarah Blackshear
Sarah is senior linguistics major and Spanish minor from south Texas. In her spare time, she enjoys playing the guitar, studying foreign languages, reading, spending time with friends and family, cooking, and ballet. Sarah is in her second semester with the UTSoundLab as of spring 2018.



Olivia Naworol
Olivia is a third year Linguistics major and Art History minor at the University of Texas at Austin. In her spare time, she enjoys painting, baking, and listening to podcasts. She is starting her first semester with the UTSoundLab in Spring 2018.




Lab alumni


UTSoundLab 2016-2017

Niamh Kelly, LIN

Cindy Blanco, LIN

Rachael Gilbert, LIN

Kristin Van Engen, postdoc

Elisa Ferracane, LIN

Hoyoung Yi, CSD

Maria Gavino, undergraduate

Liliana Terry, undergraduate

Hannah Ray, undergraduate

Lauren Franklin, undergraduate

Maddie Oakley, undergraduate

Emily Tagtow, undergraduate

Gaby Cook, undergraduate

Cristabella Trimble-Quiz, undergraduate

Karen Johnson, undergraduate

Jose Martinez

Gayatri Rao, PSYCH

Matthias Sjerps, graduate, max Planck Institute
Matthias (dot) Sjerps (at) mpi (dot) nl

Lauren Ayres, graduate CSD

Natalia Czimskey, graduate CSD

Zach Childers, graduate LIN

Lauren Franklin, undergraduate LIN

Kiki Adams, LIN

Corina Trevino, undergraduate LIN, CSD; Intellectual Entrepreneurship internship program

Aidan Aannestad, undergraduate LIN

Nicholas Victor, undergraduate CSD

Samantha Sebastian, undergraduate LIN

Anais Callejon, undergraduate LIN

Randall Rouse, undergraduate LIN

Gabriela Saenz, undergraduate CSD

Rob Corona, undergraduate LIN

Lauren Burleson, undergraduate LIN

Johanna Emily Boardman, undergraduate LIN

Jasmine Beitz, undergraduate CSD

Samantha Gordon, CSD

UTsoundLab Fall 2010