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Variation and style in Liverpool English: corpus building to support automatic dialect recognition


Project Description

Applications are invited for a 3-year PhD studentship in the Department of English, as part of the ESRC North West Social Science Doctoral Training Partnership (NWSSDTP) at the University of Liverpool in collaboration with the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC), a non-HEI partner organisation. The PhD project entitled ‘Variation and style in Liverpool English: corpus building to support automatic dialect recognition’ will be the first systematic study of variation of Liverpool English (LE) which will result in a spoken corpus of LE. The corpus will be used as a part of a project to build a state-of-the-art automatic speech recognition system for this regional variation. The project is designed for students with interests in sociolinguistics, phonetics and corpus linguistics. It will contribute to knowledge and understanding of regional speech through the prism of new methodologies and techniques that can be applied in industry. The student will be based in the department of English (https://www.liverpool.ac.uk/english/). Due to the interdisciplinary nature of the project, the student will be given the opportunity to complete an amount of work at the STFC (https://stfc.ukri.org/) with supervision in all disciplines.

DTP students will acquire a unique set of skills that will equip them for high-profile careers as leading social scientists, in academia or in other government, industrial, commercial and third sector organisations either in the UK or elsewhere.

The successful candidate will have a good Bachelor degree (equivalent of first-class distinction) in field/ corpus and/ or experimental linguistics and a Master’s in a related area. Due to a significant component of the project involving some work in the area of corpus building it would be beneficial if the candidate had some computational background and programming skills (i.e. Python) and/ or the experience of using statistics for speech and language data.

The PhD student will work with Dr Sofia Lampropoulou and Dr Paul Cooper as members of the UoL English department as well researchers from STFC. The successful candidate will join the research cluster for ‘Language Variation’ and will be part of a world-class research environment.

DTP studentships are currently only open to UK and EU citizens. You can find out more here about the residency requirements that apply: http://www.esrc.ac.uk/files/skills-and-careers/studentships/postgraduate-funding-guide/

Further information about the ESRC North West Social Science Doctoral Training Partnership is available here: http://www.nwssdtp.ac.uk

To apply for this vacancy please send a statement of interest and CV to:

Informal inquiries can be sent to:

The deadline for receipt of applications is Friday, 18th January, 2019.

Interviews will be scheduled within two weeks from the deadline.

Funding Notes

The studentship will cover University fees and, depending on eligibility, an annual stipend, starting at £14,777, for 3 years. DTP students also have access to research and training expenses, and can apply for further funding to pursue fieldwork, academic exchange, and collaboration with non-academic organisations.

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