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Enhancing Working Together

Supporting effective professional communication and working.

We work to deliver research that has immediate and effect impact, working with organisations including:

  • Local Authorities
  • Health Service providers
  • Educational Academies
  • Expert Patients
  • Carer Groups 

Speech and language therapists in Early Years

Speech and language therapists support pre-school children at risk of language difficulties. Children growing up in areas of social disadvantage are at a greater risk.

Dr Helen Stringer led a Knowledge Transfer Partnership. It focused on embedding speech and language therapists in Early Years settings.

This helped to support a three-tier model of universal, targeted and specialist (UTS) interventions (KTP 008197). This brings benefits for the language development of children at all three tiers of support.

New settings in Northumberland have implemented this successful UTS model.

It draws on behaviour change theories. It also looks at social capital models of collaborative practice across Health and Education.

Through this work, resources for implementation are being developed to support successful roll-out. This means other schools and local authorities can promote better outcomes for children.


Researchers in Applied Linguistics and Communication also produce research which informs effective communication. For example, our Alzheimer’s Society UK funded research led to the development of DemTalk.

DemTalk is a free, web-based toolkit to help improve communication with people with dementia. It can tailor different versions of the toolkit for the needs of different audiences. This includes family members, carers and medical professionals.

Our intercultural expertise also allowed us to develop DemTalk cross-culturally. Working with international partners, we can translate and adapt the toolkit for audiences in the global South. This includes medical professionals and students in Malaysia.

Equal Arts

We also work in collaboration with Equal Arts (also in association with Sunderland Culture). Equal Arts is a charity which develops creative arts interventions for the elderly.

In this project, we are investigating best practice in arts activity delivery for people living with dementia. This is being used to develop a training programme. This will help arts organisations and individuals improve activity delivery and intervention success.