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Born Talking: using birth cohort data to investigate risk factors and outcomes for developmental speech and language difficulties (McAllisterJU18SF1)

Project Description

Policy and practice in many areas of health and education have been informed by results from birth cohorts, which are longitudinal datasets that follow large numbers of individuals from birth and throughout their lives. Birth cohort data can shed light on topics such as prevalence, risk factors, outcomes and developmental trajectories of developmental conditions. Until recently, researchers interested in developmental disorders of speech, language and communication have made less use of the birth cohort datasets than those in other areas of health and education. Yet projects using these datasets to investigate developmental disorders of speech, language and communication have high impact potential, and many of the birth cohort datasets are freely available to members of the research community (see, for example, and

Applications for self-funded projects to address such issues using birth cohort data are welcomed. Such projects are suitable for applicants who have a background in a numerate discipline, or who can demonstrate an aptitude for acquiring the skills necessary for statistical analysis of large datasets. Within the constraints of the variables available in the birth cohorts, the applicant would be able to define their own research questions with the guidance of the supervisory team. The applicant’s proposal needs to demonstrate that they have explored the potential of the datasets to allow them to research their area of interest; this can be done by visiting the websites mentioned above. The proposal should show how research questions in the applicant’s preferred area of speech, language or communication could be addressed using birth cohort data.

For more information on the supervisor for this project, please go here:

The type of programme: PHD

Project Start Date: 2018/19

Full-time or Part-time

- Entry Requirements: This project is suitable for someone with a good first degree (at least 2:1) in a related topic area, such as a numerate discipline e.g. statistics; psychology; speech and language therapy with evidence of aptitude for quantitative analysis.

The standard minimum entry requirement is 2:1

Funding Notes

This PhD project is offered on a self-funding basis. It is open to applicants with funding or those applying to funding sources. Details of tuition fees can be found at View Website

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