Pedagogical Approaches to Laboratory Phonology

Virtual session: July 9, 2020, 9:00AM – 11:30AM PDT


The purpose of this workshop is to create a forum to exchange ideas, tools, and techniques in teaching Laboratory Phonology. Some of the questions we aim to address include:

  • What role does laboratory phonology have in the undergraduate/graduate curriculum?

  • Is it possible to design a course in laboratory phonology that does not have a more “traditional” phonology and/or phonetics course(s) as pre-requisite(s)?

  • What technical / computational / statistical issues arise?

  • Alternatively, does a laboratory phonology approach lend itself more to a topic-driven course in which a particular research question is investigated, or a more traditional phonology course that surveys one or more phonological frameworks?

  • What do sample activities/assignments/syllabi centered on a particular topic within laboratory phonology look like, and how might they be improved based on current research in pedagogy?

Our goal is for this workshop to initiate a conversation amongst researchers and instructors about pedagogical challenges, approaches, and resources that arise in bringing laboratory phonology into the classroom.

Submissions on any topic related to teaching laboratory phonology are welcome. Additionally, we welcome more general submissions on pedagogical theory as applied to the laboratory phonology setting.


There are three components to the workshop: two themed sessions, and a talk by Mary Beckman.

During the live session, all presenters will briefly recall their talk, but the main live session will comprise Q&A with the presenters and a discussion.

Please listen to the talks before the live session!

All talks will be available by June 30.

Invited speaker Mary Beckman

9:00 – 9:10 Welcome, tech check, informal introductions

9:10 – 9:15 Official welcome by organisers

9:15 – 9:50 Session 1: LabPhon research in the classroom

    • Ingo Feldhausen "Research-led teaching of state-of-the-art laboratory phonology: Intonation atlases" [video] [slides]

    • Caroline Smith "From study design to conference presentation in one semester: Introducing students to the research process in Laboratory Phonology" [video] [slides]

    • Beth MacLeod "Collaborative laboratory phonology for second year undergraduates" [video]

    • Nancy Hall "Laboratory phonology for TESOL students" [video]

    • Christina Bjorndahl & Mark Gibson "CARE Framework" [video] [slides]

9:50 – 10:00 Break (10 min)

10:00 – 10:30 Session 2: Tools, novel courses, and resources

    • Jon Nissenbaum "Using Sinewave speech to introduce undergraduates to linguistics and speech science" [video]

    • Reed Blaylock "The science of singing" [video] [slides]

    • Jonathan Howell & Catherine Baird "Information literacy in the laboratory phonology classroom" [podcast]

10:30 –10:35 Break (5 min)

10:35 – 11:00 Q&A and discussion with Mary Beckman: "Aphorisms to teach by" [video]

11:00 – 11:10 Michal Temkin Martinez & Kazuko Hiramatsu, on Scholarly Teaching and the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning

11:10 – 11:30 General discussion and conclusion

Types of submissions


In light of the fact that the workshop will be held virtually, we have made various changes to the program, including eliminating the distinction between presentations and posters/demos, and eliminating the lightning talks. We hope, however, that attendees will bring their best teaching tips and tricks to share during the general discussion!

We invite submissions for 15-minute oral presentations on a variety of topics that introduce novel approaches to teaching laboratory phonology. We will conclude this session with a general Q&A with all presenters together.

Poster/demo session

The poster/demo session will include both conventional posters as well as technology-based demos using presenters' laptop computers. The workshop will provide both a space for displaying posters and tables for presenters to set up their laptops.

Lightning talks

We invite submissions for 2-minute lightning talks. These informal, lightning-fast talks are ideal for sharing anecdotal classroom tips and tricks, both successes and failures. We will conclude this session with a general Q&A with all presenters together. Lightning talk presenters will submit their slides in advance of the workshop so that all talks can be part of a single slide presentation.

Call for abstracts

We invite abstracts for 15-minute oral presentations, 2-minute lightning talks, poster presentations, and demos. The abstract submission form can be found here.


The deadline for oral presentations, poster presentations, and demos is February 1, 2020 March 1, 2020.

Notification of acceptance will go out March 15, 2020.

The deadline for lightning talks is May 15, 2020. Notification of acceptance will go out June 1, 2020, and slides will be due June 15, 2020.

Submission guidelines

Oral presentations & posters

Abstracts for oral presentations and posters should not exceed one page (single-spaced, 12pt font) including figures and references.


Abstracts for demos should not exceed one page, and should clearly describe the pedagogical challenge that is addressed by the demonstration, and the nature of audience involvement. Please note that we will be providing tables for presenters to set up their laptops, but no other equipment. If you require other resources, please contact the organizers to see about feasibility.

Lightning talks

Abstracts for lightning talks should not exceed one paragraph, and should clearly state the pedagogical setting (e.g., undergraduate class vs. graduate seminar) and briefly describe the idea.

As we would like to include perspectives from a variety of pedagogical settings and institutions, please include your name and affiliation in the abstract. The file name should be of the form lastname_title.pdf (e.g., Smith_AwesomeClassroomInnovation.pdf).


Christina Bjorndahl

Department of Philosophy, Carnegie Mellon University

Mark Gibson

Department of Philology, Area of Linguistics, Universidad de Navarra

Jonathan Howell

Department of Linguistics, Montclair State University