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John Coleman

Professor of Phonetics
John Coleman

In a number of areas of research and teaching in the Phonetics Laboratory we have close relationships with medical sciences. Fundamental to understanding speech production in normally-developed people, we employ a number of non-invasive physiology techniques, especially aerometry, electrophysiology and magnetic resonance imaging [http://www.phon.ox.ac.uk/mri - work carried out in collaboration with colleagues from the Oxford MRI Centre, John Radcliffe Hospital]. By these means we try to better understand (a) the relationship between the movements of the speech articulators, the shape of the vocal tract, and the acoustics of the resulting sounds; (b) how such movements relate to the internal (mental) representation of spoken language. In other work, we are interested in changes to speech caused by neurological damage, such as Foreign Accent Syndrome [work in collaboration with colleagues from the Department of Clinical Neurology] and Parkinson's Disease; and automatic identification of indicators for dysarthric and dyspraxic speech. We also have strong research relationships with colleagues in the Department of Experimental Psychology, and the Department of Physiology, Anatomy and Genetics.