Doctor Karen Mattock

Doctor Karen Mattock

DAP - Under Graduate Psychology,
Dean's Unit, School of Psychology

DAP - Under Graduate Psychology,
Dean's Unit, School of Psychology

Senior Lecturer in Psychological Science,
Psychological Science

Senior Lecturer in Psychological Science,
Psychological Science


Senior Lecturer in Lifespan Development, School of Social Sciences & Psychology, University of Western Sydney

Education and Past Positions:

  • Bachelor of Psychology (hons, Class I), University of Wollongong, Australia (2000)
  • PhD (Psychology), University of Western Sydney, Australia (2005). Supervised by Prof Denis Burnham Postdoctoral Fellow in Centre for Research in Language, Mind, and Brain
  • School of Communication Sciences & Disorders, McGill University, Canada (2004-2007). Supervised by Associate Prof Linda Polka and Associate Prof Susan Rvachew Research Council U.K Fellow (2007-2012) & Academic Fellow (2012), Lancaster University U.K

This information has been contributed by Doctor Mattock.


  • PhD University of Western Sydney
  • BPsych(Hons) University of Wollongong

Organisational Unit (School / Division)

  • Dean's Unit, School of Psychology
  • Dean's Unit, School of Psychology
  • Psychological Science
  • Psychological Science


Phone: (02) 9772 6619
Location: 24.1.57

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Chapters in Books

  • Moustafa, A., Miezah, D., Crouse, J., Tindle, R., Richard, Y. and Mattock, K. (2021), 'A review on depression following major life transitions', The Nature of Depression: an Updated Review, Academic Press 9780128176764.
  • Mattock, K. (2012), 'Infant language learning', Encyclopedia of the Sciences of Learning, Springer 9781441914279.
  • Rvachew, S., Mattock, K., Clayards, M., Chiang, P. and Brosseau-Lapre, F. (2012), 'Perceptual considerations in multilingual adult and child speech acquisition', Multilingual Aspects of Speech Sound Disorders in Children, Multilingual Matters 9781847695123.
  • Burnham, D. and Mattock, K. (2010), 'Auditory Development', The Wiley-Blackwell Handbook of Infant Development, Wiley-Blackwell 9781444332735.
  • Mattock, K., Amitay, S. and Moore, D. (2010), 'Auditory development and learning', Oxford Handbook of Auditory Science, Volume 3, Hearing, Oxford University Press 9780199581412.
  • Burnham, D. and Mattock, K. (2007), 'The perception of tones and phones', Language Experience in Second Language Speech Learning: In honor of James Emil Flege, John Benjamins 9027219737.
  • Burnham, D., Kitamura, C. and Mattock, K. (2007), 'Psycholinguistics meets Psycholinguistics: different emphases, sustainable collaborations', Unfolding linguistics in honour of Sudaporn Luksaneeyanawin, Chulalongkorn University Press 9789749897690.
  • Polka, L., Rvachew, S. and Mattock, K. (2007), 'Experiential influences on speech perception and speech production in infancy', Blackwell Handbook of Language Development, Blackwell 9781405132534.

Journal Articles

  • Iordanou, C. and Mattock, K. (2021), '[In Press] Where the wild things are : understanding of emotions in a picture book', Education 3-13, .
  • Moustafa, A., Crouse, J., Herzallah, M., Salama, M., Mohamed, W., Misiak, B., Frydecka, D., Al-Dosari, N., Megreya, A. and Mattock, K. (2020), 'Depression following major life transitions in women : a review and theory', Psychological Reports, vol 123, no 5 , pp 1501 - 1517.
  • Jones, C., Collyer, E., Fejo, J., Khamchuang, C., Painter, A., Rosas, L., Mattock, K., Dunajcik, A., Escudero, P. and Dwyer, A. (2020), 'Developing a parent vocabulary checklist for young Indigenous children growing up multilingual in the Katherine region of Australia's Northern Territory', International Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, vol 22, no 5 , pp 583 - 590.
  • Kalashnikova, M., Oliveri, A. and Mattock, K. (2019), 'Acceptance of lexical overlap by monolingual and bilingual toddlers', International Journal of Bilingualism, vol 23, no 6 , pp 1517 - 1530.
  • Singh, L., Burnham, D., Hay, J., Liu, L. and Mattock, K. (2019), 'Lexical tone perception in infants and young children : empirical studies and theoretical perspectives', Frontiers in Psychology, vol 10 .
  • Burnham, D., Singh, L., Mattock, K., Woo, P. and Kalashnikova, M. (2018), 'Constraints on tone sensitivity in novel word learning by monolingual and bilingual infants : tone properties are more influential than tone familiarity', Frontiers in Psychology, vol 8 .
  • Jones, S., Sharma, M., Harkus, S., McMahon, C., Taumoepeau, M., Demuth, K., Mattock, K., Rosas, L., Wing, R., Pawar, S. and Hampshire, A. (2018), 'A program to respond to otitis media in remote Australian Aboriginal communities : a qualitative investigation of parent perspectives', BMC Pediatrics, vol 18 .
  • Kalashnikova, M., Mattock, K. and Monaghan, P. (2016), 'Flexible use of mutual exclusivity in word learning', Language Learning and Development, vol 12, no 1 , pp 79 - 91.
  • Kalashnikova, M., Mattock, K. and Monaghan, P. (2016), 'Mutual exclusivity develops as a consequence of abstract rather than particular vocabulary knowledge', First Language, vol 36, no 5 , pp 451 - 464.
  • Monaghan, P., Mattock, K., Davies, R. and Smith, A. (2015), 'Gavagai is as Gavagai does : learning nouns and verbs from cross-situational statistics', Cognitive Science, vol 39, no 5 , pp 1099 - 1112.
  • Kalashnikova, M., Mattock, K. and Monaghan, P. (2015), 'The effects of linguistic experience on the flexible use of mutual exclusivity in word learning', Bilingualism: Language and Cognition, vol 18, no 4 , pp 626 - 638.
  • Kalashnikova, M. and Mattock, K. (2014), 'Maturation of executive functioning skills in early sequential bilingualism', International Journal of Bilingual Education and Bilingualism, vol 17, no 1 , pp 111 - 123.
  • Kalashnikova, M., Mattock, K. and Monaghan, P. (2014), 'Disambiguation of novel labels and referential facts : a developmental perspective', First Language, vol 34, no 2 , pp 125 - 135.
  • Walker, P., Bremner, J., Mason, U., Spring, J., Mattock, K., Slater, A. and Johnson, S. (2014), 'Preverbal infants are sensitive to cross-sensory correspondences : much ado about the null results of Lewkowicz and Minar (2014)', Psychological Science, vol 25, no 3 , pp 835 - 836.
  • Allen, M., Mattock, K. and Silva, M. (2014), 'Symbolic understanding of pictures and written words share a common source', Journal of Cognition and Culture, vol 3, no 3-4 , pp 187 - 198.
  • Monaghan, P. and Mattock, K. (2012), 'Integrating constraints for learning word-referent mappings', Cognition, vol 123, no 1 , pp 133 - 143.
  • Monaghan, P., Mattock, K. and Walker, P. (2012), 'The role of sound symbolism in language learning', Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, vol 38, no 5 , pp 1152 - 1164.
  • Mattock, K., Polka, L., Rvachew, S. and Krehm, M. (2010), 'The first steps in word learning are easier when the shoes fit : comparing monolingual and bilingual infants', Developmental Science, vol 13, no 1 , pp 229 - 243.
  • Walker, P., Bremner, J., Mason, U., Spring, J., Mattock, K., Slater, A. and Johnson, S. (2010), 'Preverbal infants' sensitivity to synaesthetic cross-modality correspondences', Psychological Science, vol 21, no 1 , pp 21 - 25.
  • Mattock, K., Molnar, M., Polka, L. and Burnham, D. (2008), 'The developmental course of lexical tone perception in the first year of life', Cognition, vol 106, no 3 , pp 1367 - 1381.
  • Rvachew, S., Alhaidary, A., Mattock, K. and Polka, L. (2008), 'Emergence of the corner vowels in the babble produced by infants exposed to Canadian English or Canadian French', Journal of Phonetics, vol 36, no 4 , pp 564 - 577.
  • Panneton, R., Kitamura, C., Mattock, K. and Burnham, D. (2006), 'Slow Speech Enhances Younger But not older infants' perception of Vocal Emotion', Research in Human Development, vol 3, no 1 , pp 7 - 19.
  • Mattock, K. and Burnham, D. (2006), 'Chinese and English Infants' Tone Perception: Evidence for Perceptual Reorganization', Infancy, vol 10, no 3 , pp 241 - 265.
  • Rvachew, S., Mattock, K., Polka, L. and Menard, L. (2006), 'Developmental and cross-linguistic variation in the infant vowel space', Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, vol 120, no 4 , pp 2250 - 2259.

Conference Papers

  • Zeng, Z., Mattock, K., Liu, L., Peter, V., Tuninetti, A. and Tsao, F. (2020), 'Mandarin and English adults' cue-weighting of lexical stress', INTERSPEECH (Conference), Online.
  • Kalashnikova, M. and Mattock, K. (2011), 'The disambiguation effect as a manifestation of socio-pragmatic competence', Tokyo Conference on Psycholinguistics, Tokyo, Japan.
  • Monaghan, P. and Mattock, K. (2009), 'Cross-situational language learning : the effects of grammatical categories as constraints on referential labeling', Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society, Amsterdam, the Netherlands.

Other Publications

  • 2018, 'Tackling Maternal Anxiety in the Perinatal Period: Reconceptualising Mothering Narratives', Report

I investigate language development with particular focus on speech perception and babbling in infancy and and word learning in infants, children and adults using phonetic, constraints, socio-pragmatic, cross-situational, and sound-symbolic approaches. I am  interested in the factors that influence language development such as exposure and experience with language, cross-linguistic influences, learning one vs two languages (bilingualism), hearing impairment, and infant-directed speech. My most significant contribution is in the area of infants' perception of lexical tone, a feature of tone languages such as Mandarin and Thai.

This information has been contributed by Doctor Mattock.

Previous Projects

Title: Learning to Talk, Talking to Learn: Effects of an early childhood language program in remote Northern Territory indigenous communities
  • Australian Research Council (ACRG)
  • Sunrise Health Service Aboriginal Corporation
  • The Smith Family
Western Researchers: Paola Escudero Neyra and Karen Mattock
Years: 2015-04-22 - 2018-04-29
ID: P00021898
Title: Making speech three-dimensional: Adding tone to consonant- and vowel-based speech perception and language acquisition research, quantification and theory
  • Australian Research Council (ACRG)
Western Researchers: Denis Burnham and Karen Mattock
Years: 2009-01-01 - 2014-06-30
ID: P0016076
Title: How in-language advertising impacts behaviour
  • Special Broadcasting Service Corporation
Western Researchers: Kevin Dunn, Renu Narchal, Karen Mattock, Nida Denson, Alanna Kamp and Rachel Sharples
Years: 2020-11-09 - 2021-09-30
ID: P00026937

Western Sydney University

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