Isabel O'Keeffe


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Personal profile


I am currently the Lab Coordinator (part-time) for the Child Language Lab in the Department of Linguistics at Macquarie University. The lab is led by Distinguished Professor Katherine Demuth, Dr Titia Benders and Dr Nan Xu Rattanasone and studies the process of child language acquisition. I provide research support to the lab, including the recruitment of participants (information on current opportunities for children aged 0-18 is on the participant section of our web page).

I have training in both linguistics and musicology and a PhD in Linguistics from the University of Melbourne. My thesis examined the public dance-song traditions of Indigenous communities in western Arnhem Land and how they reflect and contribute to the linguistic diversity and multilingualism of the region. As well as my Lab Coordinator role, I am a Research Associate at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music (University of Sydney) and CI of a project documenting the endangered Indigenous language Kunbarlang, funded by the Endangered Languages Documentation Programme (SOAS, London). I am particularly interested in the relationships between language, song and emotions and in working with communities to support the maintenance of languages and performance traditions.

External positions

Sydney Conservatorium of Music


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