UCL Psychology and Language Sciences


MSc Speech and Language Therapy Programme Team

Meet the MSc Speech and Language Therapy Programme Team

Suzanne Beeke is an associate professor with a background in speech and language therapy. She is programme director and module coordinator for the research project module.  She also teaches qualitative research methods including conversation analysis, and academic writing and reading skills. Her research interests include conversation in aphasia and dementia, and the design and evaluation of conversation training for people with acquired communication disorders and their family members. Suzanne led the research project that created Better Conversations with Aphasia, a free online resource for SLTs and people with aphasia, which is also used in teaching.

Steven Bloch is a speech and language therapist with a background in palliative care, progressive neurological conditions and augmentative and alternative communication. His research interests focus on the analysis of conversation in health and social care settings, particularly communication in end-of-life planning and decision-making. Steven is Editor-in-Chief of the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists’ International Journal of Language and Communication Disorders.

Kirsty CatlingKirsty Catling is currently working within the MSc Speech Sciences year B professional studies module.  Kirsty has extensive clinical experience of working with clients experiencing acquired disorders of swallowing and communication.  This includes working with aphasia, cognitive communication disorder (CCD), dysarthria and dyspraxia.  She is also an experienced practice educator and regularly supervises students on placement.  She has worked across the care pathway in this field and has experience of working within the NHS, privately and overseas in New Zealand.  She previously enjoyed working as the lead SLT for Richmond community neuro rehab team.  Kirsty has particular interests in the management of progressive neurological conditions, therapy for aphasia/CCD and supervision and SLT professional development.

Lesley Cavalli is a part-time Lecturer in the Department of Language and Cognition.  She joined the UCL teaching staff in 1996 and currently leads on the teaching of clinical voice disorders within the MSc Speech and Language Sciences.

Lesley graduated as a Speech and Language Therapist (SLT) from UCL back in 1988.  Before starting her clinical career in the NHS she worked for a short time as a Research Assistant, joining the UCL team developing early synthesised speech.  She completed an MSc in Human Communication at City University where she continued her focus on the instrumental analysis of speech and voice.

She currently also works at Great Ormond Street Hosptial where she is the Lead SLT in Voice Disorders and Joint Head of SLT Services.  Specific areas of clinical interest include psychogenic voice disorder, paradoxical vocal fold dysfunction and congenital and acquired paediatric ENT pathology, together with a focus on instrumental voice analysis and functional outcomes for the patient.



Janet Collier works part-time as a lecturer on the MSc Speech and Language Sciences, and also continues to work as a highly specialist speech and language therapist in an NHS acute hospital setting with adults with acquired neurological disorders and other conditions affecting communication and swallowing.  She coordinates the Professional Studies 2 module in Year B, and contributes also to the practice education programme. She holds a BSc (Hons) in Speech Pathology and Therapy and a Masters degree in Research in Clinical Practice, funded by the National Institute for Health Research.  Janet is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

Michael Dean is a speech and language therapist and lecturer in the Department of Language and Cognition. His role in the MSc Speech and Language Sciences course includes lectures on cognitive neuropsychology and sentence processing and therapy, professional studies tutorials and workshops, and research project supervision. He works in the UCL Communication Clinic, with a caseload of adults with acquired communication difficulties (mainly aphasia) and as a practice educator to students on placement in the clinic. Before joining UCL, Michael worked in the NHS, in adult in-patient neurological rehabilitation with some experience in more acute settings. Prior to training as an SLT he completed postgraduate and postdoctoral research in cognitive psychology.
Bronwen Evans is an associate professor in Phonetics. She teaches modules in Phonetics and Sociolinguistics across a number of degree programmes and has research interests in sociophonetics, studying how speakers and listeners use and adapt to variation in the speech signal, and second language learning. She is currently involved in a number of funded projects using methodologies from behavioural psychology and neuroscience, and as a result of having a son who tells her that she doesn't say the word 'bath' properly, has become particularly interested in understanding how children develop the ability to use accent variation in speech processing.

Victoria Fleming is a lecturer on the Speech and Language Therapy programme.  She coordinates and teaches on two modules: SLAN0012 Research Methods and SLAN0007 Research and Evidence Based Practice.  These modules equip students with the core knowledge and skills to undertake and critically evaluate research in the field of speech and language therapy. Victoria also offers Statistics Surgeries to Year B students undertaking research projects, as part of the SLAN0002 Project module.

Victoria has a background in Psychology (BSc) and qualified as a Speech and Language Therapist in 2014.  Following this, she joined the Neurotherapeutics group in the UCL Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience as a research assistant/associate, where she worked on randomised controlled trials of digital aphasia interventions. During this time she earned her PhD, where she used a combination of behavioural and structural imaging (MRI) methods to investigate the efficacy of a gamified auditory comprehension therapy, and examine treatment-related neuroplasticity.  Her research interests also extend to language development, where she has collaborated on a novel app-based task to examine children’s semantic processing.

Jennifer Grassly is a lecturer in the Department of Language and Cognition and her role on the MSc Speech and Language Sciences involves coordinating the module SLAN0009: Management of Communication Difficulties 3: Language and Cognition (acquired).  This module addresses aphasia, cognitive communication disorder and dementia and covers theory, assessment and intervention approaches.  Jennifer also has a role in teaching and assessment in SLAN0008: Professional Studies.

Jennifer qualified as a Speech and Language Therapist in 2000 and has spent her career working with adults. Initially she worked across a range of adult client groups including ALD, voice and acute but for the last 10 years she has focussed on working with adults with neurological conditions. In 2013, she joined the Bucks Community Neurological Rehabilitation Service working as part of an interdisciplinary team.

Michelle McInerney is a Speech and Language Therapist (SLT), a Lecturer and Leader of the Eating, Drinking, and Swallowing (EDS) module in Year B.  She has over 16 years of clinical experience, having worked predominately with children with cerebral palsy (CP) and other physical disabilities.  More recently, she has worked as a Clinical Specialist SLT with neonates who are at high risk of CP and oral feeding impairments in acute hospital settings.  Michelle is passionate about translating evidence-based practices in the field of SLT to optimise the care that people who have communication and swallowing impairments receive.  She is an active researcher in the field of neurodisability and works with UK and international researchers on a number of CP-focussed projects related to: paediatric dysphagia, saliva control and anterior drooling, dysarthria and eye gaze control technology.  Michelle is a Research Associate with the Murdoch Children's Research Institute (MRCI) in Australia.


Simone Ojei is a speech and language therapist with a special interest in deafness and children with social, emotional and mental health needs.  Simone is module coordinator for Management of Communication Difficulties 2: Speech and Hearing and works on Professional Studies 1 in Year A.

Lucy Pepper is a speech and language therapist and lecturer in the Department of Language and Cognition. She coordinates the Professional Studies 1 module in Year A and contributes to the practice education programme.

Alex Perovic is an associate professor in the Department of Linguistics. She teaches clinical linguistics on the MSc Speech and Language Sciences and coordinates the Linguistic and Psychological Perspectives module in Year A. Her research focuses on the development of syntax and pragmatics in children with Autism Spectrum Disorders, Down syndrome, Williams syndrome and Specific Language Impairment, in English and cross-linguistically.  Alex supervises undergraduate and graduate research projects on topics related to language acquisition in typical and atypical development, in English and other languages.
Rachel Rees is a lecturer in the Department of Language and Cognition and Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.  She regularly contributes to advances in education practices in the Faculty of Brain Sciences. She worked as a speech and language therapist in the NHS for 20 years, specialising in deafness.  Her research interests include the use of Cued Speech to develop deaf children’s language and literacy skills and a psycholinguistic approach to speech assessment, publishing work in these areas.  She is a member of the UK and Ireland Specialists in Specific Speech Impairment Network.

Kate Shobbrook is a Lecturer in the Department of Language and Cognition and Year A coordinator on the MSc Speech and Language Sciences. She also coordinates and teaches on the Management of Communication Difficulties 1 module. Kate qualified as a speech and language therapist in 2002.  She works with children with speech, language and communication needs, with particular interest in Developmental Language Disorder.  She has worked in a variety of settings, including special and mainstream schools, language resource bases and community clinics.  Kate is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

Jane Warren trained as a neurologist in Australia before relocating to the UK and undertaking a PhD in language neuroscience. She is a lecturer in the Department of Language & Cognition. She teaches anatomy, physiology and neurology on the MSc Speech and Language Sciences and coordinates the Brain, Mind and Health module in year B. Jane’s research focuses on the functional organisation of brain regions supporting language processes in healthy individuals and in people with acquired language disorders. Her current research centres on investigation of higher-order aspects of language comprehension in healthy and aphasic populations.