Kathleen (Katie) Fraser

About Me

I am currently a research scientist in the Text Analytics group at the National Research Council.

I recently completed a post-doc at the University of Gothenburg, working with Dimitrios Kokkinakis on detecting subtle signs of cognitive impairment from speech, language, eye-movements, and other non-invasive biomarkers.

I received my PhD from the University of Toronto, in the Computational Linguistics group. My supervisors were Graeme Hirst and Jed Meltzer. Before that, I did a Masters of Computer Science at Dalhousie University in Halifax, NS, and a B.Sc. in Physics at St Francis Xavier University in Antigonish, NS.

I'm interested in Artificial Intelligence, especially areas involving language and cognition. I'm fascinated by the question of how the brain works, and what our words and actions can reveal about the hidden workings of the mind.


In my research, I'm interested in using machine learning to detect signs of dementia or other cognitive disorders from short samples of speech. Depending on which parts of the brain are affected, speakers may exhibit unusual patterns of syntax or semantics. I have been largely focused on a particular type of dementia called primary progressive aphasia (PPA), which targets the language centers in the brain. However, language symptoms are also seen in more common types of dementia, such as Alzheimer's disease.

UofT News profile

Governer General's Medal


The best way to reach me is by email: kathleen.fraser@nrc-cnrc.gc.ca.

© 2018 Katie Fraser
Photo credit: Johnny Guatto. Template design by Andreas Viklund