School of Education, Communication and Language Sciences

Speech & Language Sciences

Speech and Language Sciences


We research in many speech and language fields to help tackle communication disorders.

Research interests

These include:

  • speech and language pathology
  • clinical linguistics
  • psycholinguistics
  • cognitive neuroscience
  • bilingualism and sociolinguistics
  • phonetics

Staff have expertise in speech and language pathology, linguistics, phonetics and psychology. Many members of staff have expertise in more than one area.

Our interdisciplinary research approach involves collaboration between disciplines within the School. We work with other groups within the University and colleagues in the UK and abroad.

Research groups

Speech and language science research groups within the school include:

Partner agency

We also engage in research with the NHS. This is the North East Speech and Language Therapy Research Collaboration.

Adult Impairment

Our work covers a range of areas related to communication disorders in adults.

Specific areas of research interest include:

  • acquired communication disorders
  • motor speech disorders
  • neurogenic voice and fluency disorders
  • psychosocial aspects of rehabilitation in neurological illness

To find out more about aphasia and related research at Newcastle, visit our research website.

Adult Impairment research staff

Professor David Howard
Research Development Professor

Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 7451

Dr Nicole Lallini
Lecturer in Speech & Language Pathology

Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 3932

Professor Nick Miller
Prof of Motor Speech Disorders

Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5603

Dr Julie Morris
Reader in Speech & Lang Sciences

Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 6841

Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 8875

Dr Janet Webster
Senior Lecturer, Director of Clinical Education

Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5235

Child Language

The group conducts research on typical and atypical speech. It looks at language development in monolingual and bilingual children.

Our interests encompass:

  • phonological development in Arabic-English bilinguals
  • bilingualism and language impairment
  • language intervention (universal, specific and targeted)
  • dynamic assessment
  • literacy difficulties and links to language

We also disentangle language difficulties and social disadvantage in large scale datasets, and use statistical models of language development, eg growth curve analysis.

We meet two to three times a semester to discuss the latest developments in the field. We present research proposals and data to colleagues.

If you wish to attend one of our meetings, contact Nick Riches:

Child Language research staff

Dr Ghada Khattab
Senior Lecturer

Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 6583

Professor James Law
Professor of Speech & Language Sciences

Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5250

Dr Carolyn Letts
Senior Lecturer

Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 7390

Dr Penny Levickis
Marie Sklodowska-Curie Fellow

Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 6528

Dr Carol Moxam
Literacy Clinic Director

Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5890

Dr Nick Riches
Lecturer in Speech & Language Pathology

Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 8720

Dr Faye Smith
Lecturer in Speech and Language Sciences


Dr Helen Stringer
Lecturer/Speech and Language Therapist

Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5196


We have a particular interest in experimental phonetics and in socio-phonetics and language variation.

Our research has focused on themes such as:

  • quantitative acoustic analysis of aspects of speech
  • the nature of phonetic variability and implications for phonetic theory
  • the various dimensions (physical, linguistic, cognitive and social) of spoken communication
  • systematic properties of speech in its social context
  • the acquisition of speech sound patterning in children

We also look at:

  • the nature of speech in populations of speakers with impaired speech production
  • monolingual and bilingual phonological acquisition
  • phonetics/phonology and sociolinguistics
  • foreign accent

Phonetics research staff

Dr Jalal-eddin Al-Tamimi
Lecturer in Phonetics

Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 5208

Dr Ghada Khattab
Senior Lecturer

Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 6583