Research Supervisor Connect

Improving treatments in childhood apraxia of speech


My research comes from my clinical experiences and a drive to do better, more effective speech pathology.


Professor Tricia McCabe, Professor Kirrie Ballard, Dr Alison Purcell.

Research location

Disability and Community Research Group

Program type



Childhood apraxia of speech (CAS) is an area of research and clinical expertise of the speech pathology team at the University of Sydney. Over the past 7 years we have developed a new treatment, Rapid Syllable Transition Training (or ReST) and proven that both ReST and the Nuffield programme can be used effectively with children with CAS. We are also conducting trials to make ReST more effective and to make an electronic version of Nuffield. The current opportunities for research include comparing ReST to Integrated Phonological Awareness therapy by Gillon and colleagues in New Zealand; comparing Nuffield program with Dynamic Tactile and Temporal Cueing from Strand and collegues; comparing ReST intervention with ultrasound biofeedback (Preston); and comparing face to face CAS treatment with therapy delivered by skype.

There are also some more experimental or basic science questions to be answered in CAS including what are the perceptual boundaries of syllable segregation and/or lexical stress correctness. Projects in these areas could suit psychology, linguistics or acoustics researchers.

We are also open to other ideas for CAS and other paediatric motor research and speech motor learning projects and potential students should email Tricia for more information.

Additional information

Research students at all levels are encouraged to contact the team to further discuss opportunities.  Students with a first class honours degree may be eligible for competitive scholarships and should contact Dr Tricia McCabe as early as possible to discuss deadlines and application procedures.  Students considering research who do not yet have an honours degree may consider enrolling in the 1 year, stand alone honours program attached to the Bachelor of Health Sciences at the Faculty of Health Sciences and the team would be happy to provide appropriate projects for suitable candidates.

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Opportunity ID

The opportunity ID for this research opportunity is 1775

Other opportunities with Professor Tricia McCabe