Woman Researchers A1 portait posters_web_ALL - Page 13

‘I encountered women who had managed the lot: be a successful researcher, a brilliant teacher, a mum...’ Dr SONJA SCHAEFFLER LECTURER, SPEECH AND HEARING SCIENCES I’m a Speech Scientist. I have degrees in both Phonetics and Psychology, and my research takes place in the borderland between these two disciplines. I use phonetic methodology and instrumentation (most notably Ultrasound Tongue Imaging) to explore psycholinguistic topics. My projects have included work on articulatory settings in bilingual speakers, speech planning and verbal reaction time protocols. I’ve been curious about language and speech for as long as I can think, and the equipment we have available here at Queen Margaret University takes things one step further. Not only can I find out how things work when we speak, I can investigate aspects of speech production that are normally hidden from view (for example movements of the tongue). O E R A T I N G L B WOMEN RESEARCHERS INSPIRING RESEARCH CAREER JOURNEYS When I first started studying in Munich leading roles were mostly occupied by men, and looking at the few research active women it very much seemed an academic career was not compatible with having any (family) life to speak of. An exchange semester at UCL London drastically changed my view of things. Here I encountered women who had managed the lot: be a successful researcher, a brilliant teacher, a mum... Professor Valerie Hazan was one of those inspirational figures. Somewhat more optimistic about a career in academia I applied for a PhD at Stirling University. My supervisor, Professor Vera Kempe, turned out to be yet another stellar example of this ‘new’ breed of academic women. She was adamant that you could and should do it all (she had her second baby a few weeks after my viva, just to prove a point I think!). And so I try.