Speech Learning Lab

Department of Linguistics & School of Communication Sciences and Disorders

McGill University


In the Speech Learning lab we investigate phonetic variability - how pronunciations change from instance to instance - and how this shapes speech perception. We’re also interested in how listeners and learners adapt to the phonetic patterns of their linguistic environment and what happens when those patterns change. We have a special interest in how individuals differ in both patterns of production and perception abilities.

Learn more about our research

Lab Members

Dr. Meghan Clayards
Assistant Professor
Linguistics   SCSD
Alvaro Iturralde Zurita
PhD student
Hye-Young Bang
Recent PhD!
Sarah Colby
Recent PhD!
Donghyun Kim
Recent PhD!
Jiaer Tao
Recent MA!

View Collaborators and Alumni



  • Colby, S., Shiller, D., Clayards, M., Baum, S. (accepted). The increased lexical bias in older adults’ speech perception: Implicit perceptual bias or explicit controlled processing? Special issue of the Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research. [pre print]
  • Kim, D., Clayards, M. (2019) Individual differences in the link between perception and production and the mechanisms of phonetic imitation. Language, Cognition and Neuroscience. doi:10.1080/23273798.2019.1582787 [pre print]
  • Knowles, T., Clayards, M., Sonderegger, M. (2018). Examining Factors Influencing the Viability of Automatic Acoustic Analysis of Child Speech. Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, 61(10), 2487-2501. doi:10.1044/2018_JSLHR-S-17-0275 [pre print]
  • Colby, S., Clayards, M., Baum, S. (2018). Perceptual learning in younger and older adults: The role of lexical status and individual differences. Journal of Speech, Language and Hearing Research. 61(8), 1855–1874 10.1044/2018_JSLHR-S-17-0392 [pre print]
  • Clayards, M. (2018) Differences in cue weights for speech perception are correlated for individuals within and across contrasts. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America. 144(3) doi:10.1121/1.5052025
  • Kim, D., Clayards, M., Goad, H. (2018) The acquisition of new vowel contrasts by Korean learners of English: A longitudinal study. Journal of Phonetics, 67, 1-20. doi:10.1016/j.wocn.2017.11.003 [pre print]
  • Bang, H.-Y., Sonderegger, M , Kang. Y., Clayards, M., Yoon, T.-J., (2018) The emergence, progress, and impact of tonogenesis: Evidence from Seoul Korean. Journal of Phonetics, 66, 12-144. doi: 10.1016/j.wocn.2017.09.005 [pre print]
  • Clayards, M. (2018, accepted 2016) Individual talker and token variability in multiple cues to stop voicing. Phonetica. 75:1-23 doi:10.1159/000448809 free download [pre print]


  • Tao, J., Torreira, F., Clayards, M. (2018) Durational cues to word boundaries in spontaneous speech. Proceedings of the 9th Speech Prosody Conference in Posnan, Poland [download]
  • Killbourne-Cerone, O., Wagner, M., Clayards, M. (accepted 2016) The effect of production planning locality on external sandhi:a study in /t/. Proceedings of the Chicago Linguistics Association.[pdf]
  • Clayards, M., Knowles, T. (2015) Prominence enhances voiceless-ness and not place distinction in English voiceless sibilants. Proceedings of the International Congress of Phonetic Sciences, Glasgow, UK. [Online]


  • Tao, J., Torreira, F., Clayards, M. (2018, November) Perception of word boundaries in spontaneous speech in English. Poster presentation at the Acoustical Society of America, Victoria, Canada. [Poster]
  • Jiang, B., Clayards, M., Sonderegger, M. (2018, June) Perception and Individual variability of a Tonal Register Contrast in Chinese Wu dialects. Poster presentation at LabPhon16, Lisbon, Portugal. [Poster]
  • Tao, J., Torreira, F., Clayards, M. (2018, June) Durational cues in spontaneous speech. Poster presentation at LabPhon16, Lisbon, Portugal. [Poster]
  • Colby, S., Poulton, V., Clayards, M. (2017, December) Inhibitory and lexical frequency effects in younger and older adults’ spoken word recognition. Poster presentation at the Acoustical Society of America, New Orleans, LA. [Poster]
  • Kim, D., Clayards, M., Kong, E. (2017, December) Individual differences in perceptual adaptation to phonetic categories: Categorization gradiency and cognitive abilities. Poster presentation at the Acoustical Society of America, New Orleans, LA. [Poster]
  • Bang, HY, Sonderegger, M., Clayards, M. (2017, April) Speaker variability in cue weighting for laryngeal contrasts: the relationship to sound change. Poster presented at the 4th Workshop on Sound Change, Edinborough, UK.[Poster]

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Meghan Clayards

Email: meghan.clayards [at] mcgill.ca
Phone: 514-398-4235

Department of Linguistics

1085 Ave Dr. Penfield, Montréal, Quebec
Office: Room 201

School of Communication Sciences and Disorders

2001 McGill College, 8th floor, Montréal, Quebec
Office: Room 819
Lab: Room 803

Funded by



Michael McAuliffe's STRAIGHT tutorial for stimulus synthesis