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PhD, Arabic Linguistics, The University of Texas at Austin

Research Areas: sociophonetics, linguistic anthropology, pedagogy: teaching Arabic as a foreign language

MA, Arabic Linguistics (Middle Eastern Languages and Cultures), The University of Texas at Austin

BA, Globalization Studies (Summa Cum Laude), Italian Minor, Gettysburg College

Skills & Tools

Languages: Thai (native), English (native), Arabic (near-native), Italian (advanced), Hindi & Punjabi (conversational)

Programming Languages: R (proficient), Python (basic), JavaScript/JSON (basic), HTML (proficient)

Tools: LLMs, Mural, Miro, Qualtrics,, Voiceflow, LMS (Canvas, Blackboard)


Skills: UX & Market Research, Linguistics, AI Prompt Engineering, Flowchart Design, Content Strategy, Conversation Design, Phonetic Notations (IPA & IPA-SAMPA), Intent Matching (NLP), Entity Extraction, Persona Creation, Content Strategy, Web Building, Usability Testing, Survey & Experiment Design & Analysis, Journey Maps, Competitive Audit, Affinity Wall, Data Analysis, Regression Modeling, Ethnography, Writing for Various Audiences, Crossfunctional Collaboration, Presenting, Relationship Building



Vertex Inc.

Sep 2023 - Present

  • Using market and discovery UX research methods to analyze user data, identify pain points, and brainstorm user-centric solutions in B2B tax compliance software solutions.

  • Led communication strategy meetings, driving internal communication and branding, resulting in increased engagement and departmental visibility.

  • Crafted AI Program executive presentations, leveraging qualitative research to guide board-level decisions, influencing strategic direction.

  • Orchestrated collaboration with SMEs to create educational materials aimed at equipping internal teams for innovation brainstorming, and for further cross-departmental use to promote awareness of user needs.

  • Drove interdepartmental collaboration to create and refine user journey maps using interactive flowcharts, integrating new and legacy data to enhance user journey mapping, pinpointing customer pain points, filling product gaps, and steering innovations to capitalize on market opportunities and increase company revenue.


May 2023 - Aug (3 months)

  • Translating social media content from English into culturally relevant forms across multiple Arabic language communities for client companies' marketing campaigns, ensuring that translations fit with the intended branding. 

Virginia Tech (currently remote, in Austin, TX)
Aug 2019 – Sep 2023 (4 years)

Qualitative Study on Minority Language Survival on Social Media                                                           

  • Conducting qualitative research using video and thematic analyses to inform how Arabic language-based products on Instagram stay relevant to their target audience.

  • Saved $60,000 in university funds by winning a competitive, external grant via a well crafted research proposal.

Quantitative Study on Linguistic Accommodation in Bahrain                                                                

  • Conducted quantitative analyses of originally collected data via mixed effects regression modeling in R.

  • Reported findings to stakeholders in engaging presentations and 2 peer-reviewed publications.

Machine Learning for Automatic Speech Segmentation for Arabic Varieties                                 

  • Collaborated on a machine-learning project for automatic speech segmentation of Arabic dialects.

  • Co-created the first-ever phonetic segmentation tool for Arabic linguists and other interested researchers.

Teaching and Instructional Design

  • Taught & managed 75+ undergraduate students, leading highly interactive live discussions and gamified learning experiences using in-person and remote, synchronous & asynchronous formats via Zoom and a Learning Management System (LMS).

  • Generated a 200% increase in student retention & enrollment within one year.

  • Led and developed a new metric for the Arabic curriculum assessments.

  • Regularly employed the iterative design process to improve courses: collected user feedback through surveys, identified pain-points, continuously modified and re-launched specific design features.

The University of Texas at Austin
Jul 2013 – May 2019 (6 years)

  • Led, planned, and owned 7+ research studies using a range of qualitative & quantitative methods (1:1 and group interviews, ethnography, literature review, video analysis, questionnaire and survey development, experiment design and data analysis) to produce impact in Arabic linguistics, machine-learning, acoustic phonetics, and language pedagogy.

  • Conducted 100+ recorded participant interviews in Arabic.

  • Analyzed data in R to identify patterns in language use and to inform future research designs.

  • Won a $53,000 competitive research grant by convincing selective stakeholders of project value.

  • Reported findings and sought stakeholder feedback in 7 conference presentations, 2 working-papers, and 1 peer-reviewed publication.

Teaching and Instructional Design

  • Awarded 2x for teaching excellence (Senate of College Councils and the Liberal Arts Council)

  • Managed team-members (teaching assistants) who facilitated class and mentored and advised students.

American Councils for International Education, Amman, Jordan
Jun 2015 – Aug 2015 (2 months, summer program)

  • Managed and mentored 37 scholarship recipients abroad in Amman, Jordan; provided guidance on navigating cultural aspects & related programmatic requirements.

  • Served as a liaison between the students, host program administrators in Jordan and Stateside administrators in Washington, DC.

  • Conducted instructional audits and provided pedagogical & programmatic advice to client program to ensure that outcomes aligned with the learning goals of the Stateside funders.

  • Conducted weekly team-building & cultural discussion meetings with scholarship recipients.  

The American University in Cairo, Egypt
May 2013 – Jul 2013 (2 months, summer program)

  • Managed, facilitated, and organized the orientation and onboarding process for 40 fellows abroad in Cairo, Egypt.

  • Created and implemented an emergency evacuation plan in an event of political unrest in Egypt in 2013.

Competitive Grants

2022-2023 American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS) Fellowship, Personae of Bahrain: The Survival of a Dialect through Social Media ($60,000)

2017-2018 Fulbright Research Scholarship for dissertation fieldwork, US Department of State ($53,000)

2016 Departmental Grant for Summer Research in Bahrain, DMES, UT Austin ($2,000)

2012-2013 Fulbright Research Scholarship, US Department of State ($30,000)


2019 Texas Foreign Language Teaching Excellence Award, The University of Texas at Austin


2014 Teaching Excellence Award, Senate of College Councils and the Liberal Arts Council, The University of Texas at Austin


2022 Sokhey, N. Divergent Trends in Two Arabic Dialect Communities of Bahrain. Presentation at AIDA 14 (Conference of the International Association of Arabic Dialectology), University of Granada, Spain, June 28-July 1, 2022.

2022 Schiel, F., Al-Tamimi, J., Khattab, G., Sokhey, N., Moussa, H. A Romanization System and WebMAUS Aligner for Arabic Varieties. Language Resources and Evaluation Conference. Marseilles, France, June 2022.


2021 Sokhey, N. An accommodation study of ethnolectal markers in Bahrain. NWAV 49. Poster Presented in October 2021.


2020 ALiF (The Arabic Linguistics Forum) 4 Conference. Summer 2020. Virtual presentation hosted by University of Leeds.


2019 AIDA 13 (Association Internationale De Dialectologie Arabe), Akaki Tsereteli State University, Kutaisi, Georgia, “Accommodation and Vowel-Rounding in Bahrain”


2018 NWAV 47, New York University, “Vowel-rounding in Bahrain across Communities and Social Class”


2018 Arabic Linguistics Forum (ALiF), SOAS University, London, “Stylistically Vowel-Rounding in ‘Bo7rain’ (Bahrain)”

2017 Middle East Studies Association (MESA), Arabic Pedagogy Panel, Washington, DC, “Social Media Literacy in the Advanced Arabic Classroom”


2017 Symposium About Language and Society (SALSA) XXV, University of Texas at Austin, “Labializing Global and Local Identities in Bahraini Arabic” 


2016 Annual Symposium on Arabic Linguistics (ASAL), Stony Brook University, “The Cairene Women (and Men) who Speak ‘Funnyii’ ”


2016 Jil Jadid “New Generation” Conference in Middle Eastern Languages and Literatures, The University of Texas at Austin


2015 Women and Gender Studies Graduate Student Conference, The University of Texas at Austin


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