The Communication Research and Engagement Theme (RET) brings together research, teaching and clinic staff, as well as Higher Degree Research students with an interest in communication.

Within the theme ‘communication’ is defined broadly to include:

  1. Communication impairment and disability;
  2. Communication between stakeholders e.g. students/ health professionals/clients (paediatric and adult)/ significant others;
  3. Health literacy and universal design, and
  4. Teaching and learning of communication skills. Speech pathology, audiology, occupational therapy and physiotherapy disciplines are represented within the RET.


The Communication RET aims to:

  • develop collaborations between clinics, researchers, and teaching
  • provide mentoring and support to staff and students
  • facilitate the sharing of knowledge and expertise
  • promote SHRS communication research and increase its impact

Our research in action

Staff overview

Chair: David Copland, Vice-Chancellors T&R Fellowship

Deputy Chair: Sarah Wallace, Lecturer in Speech Pathology


Academic and Research Staff

Tony Angwin, Senior Lecturer in Speech Pathology

Rebecca Armstrong, Lecturer in Speech Pathology

Sonia Brownsett, Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Speech Pathology

Andrew Claus, Lecturer in Physiotherapy

Anna Copley, Lecturer in Speech Pathology

Katie Ekberg, Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Emma Finch, Conjoint Research Fellow

Louise Hickson, Professor in Audiology and Academic Dean External Engagement, Faculty of Health and Behavioural Sciences

Anne Hill, Senior Lecturer in Speech Pathology

Annie Hill, Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Speech Pathology

Megan Isaacs, Research Assistant

Amy Leung, Academic in Physiotherapy

Mansoureh Nickbakht, Research Assistant

Carly Meyer, Research Fellow

Rebecca Nund, Lecturer in Speech Pathology

Shaun O’Leary, Senior Research Fellow in Physiotherapy

Freyr Patterson, Associate Lecturer in Occupational Therapy

Adriana Penman, Lecturer in Speech Pathology

Tanya Rose, Senior Lecturer in Speech Pathology

Tracy Roxbury, Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Speech Pathology

Anna Rumbach, Senior Lecturer in Speech Pathology

Brooke Ryan, Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Nerina Scarinci, Head of Speech Pathology

Dunay Schmulian, Lecturer in Audiology

Jenny Setchell, Research Fellow

Jenny Strong, Emeritus Professor

Barbra Timmer, Adjunct Senior Research Fellow

Kristen Tulloch, Research Assistant

Monique Waite, Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Wayne Wilson, Head of Audiology


Clinic Staff

Andrea Whitehead, Clinical Manager/Educator

Amy Fagan, Clinical Operations Manager

Emma Bray, Clinical Educator Speech Pathology

Susan Walker, Clinical Educator Speech Pathology

Research projects

Project Title

Funding body


Aphasia recovery with Music exposure (AMP)


David Copland, Teppo Sarkamo, Marcus Meinzer, Felicity Baker

COMPARE- Constraint Induced versus Multi-Modal aphasia rehabilitation: An RCT of therapy for stroke related chronic aphasia.

NHMRC Project Grant

Tanya Rose, David Copland, Lyndsey Nickels, Leanne Togher, Marcus Meinzer, B Ong, Erin Godecke.

Enhancing Language Learning in Ageing With Exercise.


ARC Discovery Project.

David Copland, Katie McMahon, Eriksen, Rodriguez, Jeff Coombes, Marie-Pier McSween.

Predicting and promoting aphasia recovery.

 NHMRC Project Grant

David Copland,, Katie McMahon, Marcus Meinzer, Greig de Zubicaray

Development of a standardised tool to capture parents’ use of language facilitation strategies

Speech Pathology Australia Queensland Registration Board Legacy

Tanya Rose, Nerina Scarinci, and Anne Hill


Economic and health outcomes of a student-led technology-enhanced aphasia therapy placement

UQ HABS Faculty Grant

Sarah Wallace, David Copland, Stephen Birch, Anna Farrell, Penni Burfein, Anne Hill, Tanya Rose, Madeline Cruice

Enabling equal access using e-health


Louise Hickson, Carly Meyer,

Monique Waite, Nerina Scarinci,

Bob Cowan, Caitlin Barr, Katie

Ekberg, Deborah Theodoros,

Annie Hill, Asad Khan

Hear and Say Telepractice: Equity and access for all North Queensland children with hearing loss

E Robert Hayles & Alison L Hayles Charitable Fund

Emma Rushbrooke, Monique Waite

Improving low back pain healthcare delivery: Enhancing the biopsychosocial model



Jenny Setchell, Paul Hodges, Nathalia Costa, Rebecca Olson


Improving rehabilitation outcomes for adults with hearing impairment and their family members: A family-centered care approach

Oticon Foundation

Nerina Scarinci, Carly Meyer, Louise Hickson

‘Learning to ‘Walk the Walk’ with ‘Time and Talk’: Evaluation of changes in person-centered communication skills of audiology and speech-language pathology students

Ida Institute

Caitlin Barr, Nerina Scarinci,

Monique Waite, Jessica Vitkovic,

Sammi Tai


The flipside of noise: Does it benefit listening and learning?

Arc Discovery Project

David Copland, Anthony Angwin, Robert Barry, Wayne Wilson

The Florence Project: Designing technology to assist communication for people living with dementia and their caregivers


ARC Centre of Excellence for the Dynamics of Language

Anthony Angwin, Janet Wiles, Jacki Liddle, Peter Worthy, Andrew Back, Dan Angus, David Copland, Sarah Wallace

To tell or not to tell?  The stigma experiences of adults with hearing impairment and their families.


Hearing Industry Research Consortium       

Louise Hickson, Katie Ekberg, Barbra Timmer, Nerina Scarinci, Carly Meyer, Monique Waite

HDR students




Project Title/Description

Patrick Aiken


Dr Anna Rumach, Dr Catherine Madill

Vocal demands and experiences of video game voice actors

David Allen


A/Prof Nerina Scarinci, Dr Mary Cook, Dr Akram Kahill

Conceptualisation of Patient- and Family-Centred Care for Young Adults with Hearing Loss and their Family Members

Anthea Bott


Dr Carly Meyer, Prof Louise Hickson, Prof Nancy Pachana

Dementia and hearing impairment: Exploring intervention options for residents in aged care facilities

Penni Burfein


Prof David Copland, Dr Tracy Roxbury

Return to work for stroke survivors with aphasia

Salma Charania


Dr Anna Rumbach, A/Prof Peter Cornwell, Dr
Rebecca Nund

Living with the effects of MND: the impacts of communication disorders on the person with MND and their carers

Bonnie Cheng


Dr Sarah Wallace, Prof David Copland

Predicting and promoting aphasia recovery

Zhi Zhi Diong


A/Prof  Nerina Scarinci, Dr Tanya Rose, Dr Carly Meyer, Dr Emma
Power, Dr Samantha Siyambalapitiya

Current practice of aphasia management in Malaysia: point of beginning

Patricia Govender


Dr Brooke Ryan, Dr Emma Finch, Dr Miranda Rose

Impact of the Action Success Knowledge (ASK) program on the psychological well-being and quality of life of people with mild aphasia

Peter Lawrenson


Dr Adan Ivan Semciw, A/Prof Kay Crossley, Prof Bill Vicenzino, Prof Paul Hodges

Muscle activity and morphology in hip related pain

Jen Lee


Prof David Copland, Dr Tracy Roxbury

Stimulating aphasia recovery with music exposure

Marie-Pier McSween


Prof David Copland, A/Prof Katie McMahon, Dr Amy Rodriquez, Prof Jeff Coombes

Enhancing language learning in ageing with exercise

Katelyn Melvin


Dr Carly Meyer, A/Prof Nerina Scarinci

Engaging families to effectively support the early communication of their children in populations at high risk of

Alison Moorcroft


A/Prof Nerina Scarinci, Dr Carly Meyer

Factors affecting parent engagement in Alternative and Augmentative Communication (AAC) intervention for children with disabilities

Zheng Yen Ng


Dr Monique Waite, Dr Katie Ekberg, Prof Louise

Service provision in audiology and therapy for multilingual families

Leana Nichol


Dr Anne Hill, Dr Sarah Wallace, Dr Rachelle Pitt, 
Dr Amy Rodriguez

Technology enabled self management of aphasia: when, how and what works

Anne Pearson


Dr Anne Hill, A/Prof Jodie Copley, Dr Stacie Attril

Supporting allied health students with culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) backgrounds to meet expected levels of competency during clinical placement

Adriana Penman


Dr Anne Hill,
A/Prof Nerina Scarinci, A/Prof Sally Hewat,

The use of simulation-based learning in speech pathology training programs to support students' development of clinical skills

Felipe Andres Walter Retamal


Dr Monique Waite, A/Prof Nerina Scarinci

Optimising families? preparedness to use eHealth in early intervention for children who are deaf or hard of hearing

Annette Rotherham


Dr Sarah Wallace, Prof Nina Simmons Mackie, Dr
Clare Croteau, Dr Felicity Bright

Measuring Conversation in Aphasia: Development of an Outcome Measure

Emma Schimke


Prof David Copland, A/Prof Anthony Angwin

The effect of sleep on novel word learning in healthy adults

Alma Viviana Silver Guerrero


Prof Michele Sterling, Dr Jennifer Setchell, Francoise Maujean

An Investigation Of Physiotherapist Delivered Psychological Interventions For Musculoskeletal Pain Conditions- Reassurance For Neck Pain And Wad Conditions

Joshua Simmich


Prof Trevor Russell, Dr Nicole Hartley, Dr Allison Mandrusiak, Prof Stuart Smith

The use of active video games for maintaining a physically active lifestyle in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease

Megan Swales


Prof Deborah Theodoros, Prof Trevor Russell, Dr Annie Hill

The Assessment and Management of Cognitive-Linguistic Impairments in Parkinson's Disease via Telepractice

Shannon Taylor


Dr Sarah Wallace, Prof David Copland, A/Prof
Helen Southward

Selection of technology for people with post-stroke aphasia

Jess Tranter


Prof David Copland Dr Mary Southwood, Dr Tracy Roxbury

Identification of apraxia in aphasia

Megan Trebilcock


Dr Brooke Ryan, Kirstine Shrubsole, EmProf Linda Worrall

International Implementation of Intensive and Comprehensive Aphasia Services

Helen Wallace


Dr Sarah Wallace, Dr Hannah Gullo

How can we help people with aphasia return to driving following stroke?

Kerrin Watter


Dr Emma Finch, Dr Anna Copley

Investigating speech pathology clinical practice in early brain injury rehabilitation

Featured publications

Name of publication


A core outcome set for aphasia treatment research: The ROMA consensus statement. International Journal of Stroke, 14(2), 180-185. (2018)

Sarah Wallace, Linda Worrall, Tanya Rose, David Copland



Aphasia education: Speech-language pathologists’ perspectives regarding current and optimal practice, Aphasiology, 32(8). (2018)

Tanya Rose, Anita Balse Sarah Osmond, Angela Poon, Natasha Simons, Sarah Wallace

Can adults living with dementia complete pure-tone audiometry? A systematic review, International Journal of Audiology, 58 (4), 1-8. (2019).

Anthea Bott, Carly Meyer, Louise Hickson, Nancy Pachana.

Connectivity: An emerging concept for physiotherapy practice, Physiotherapy Theory and Practice, 32(3), 159-170. (2016)

David Nicholls, Karen Atkinson, Wenche Bjorbækmo, Barbara Gibson, Julie Latchem, Jens Olesen, Jenny Ralls, Jenny Setchell

Exploring Australian Speech-Language Pathologists’ Use and Perceptions of Non-Speech Oral Motor Exercises, Disability and Rehabilitation, 41 (12), 1-10. (2018)

Anna Rumbach, Tanya Rose, Mynn Cheah,

Family member involvement in audiology appointments with older people with hearing impairment, International Journal of Audiology, 54, 70–76. (2015)

Katie Ekberg, Carly Meyer, Nerina Scarinci, Caitlin Grenness, Louise Hickson


The Functional Communication Classification System (FCCS): Extended reliability and concurrent validity for children with cerebral palsy aged 5 to 18 years Developmental Medicine & Child Neurology, 61 (7), 805-812. (2019) 

Katy Caynes, Tanya Rose, Deborah Theodoros, Debbie Burmester, Robert Ware, Leanne Johnston


How does feedback from patients impact upon healthcare student clinical skill development and learning? A systematic review, Medical Teacher, 40 (3), 244-252. (2018)

Emma Finch, Jennifer Lethlean, Tanya Rose,

Jennifer Fleming,  Deborah Theodoros, Ashley Cameron, David Copland, Steven McPhail


Patient and Family-Centered Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology: A Practical Guide for Students. New York: Thieme. (2019)


Carly Meyer, Nerina Scarinci, Louise Hickson, L Editors



White noise enhances new-word learning in healthy adults, Scientific Reports, 7 (1), 13045. (2017)

Anthony Angwin, Wayne Wilson, Wendy Arnott, Annabelle Signorini, Robert Barry, David Copland

Awards and recognition


  • Louise Hickson - 2016 HABS Research Translation Award
  • Louise Hickson - 2013 American Academy of Audiology International Award for Hearing Research
  • Sarah Wallace - 2016 Dean’s Award for Outstanding Higher Degree by Research Theses. The University of Queensland.

Clinics and research groups

  • Adult Rehabilitation Clinic
  • Central Auditory Processing (CAP) Clinic
  • Aphasia Clinic
  • Aphasia Intensive Clinic
  • Fluency Clinic
  • General Adult Clinic (accent modification, motor speech, aphasia, adult literacy, dysphagia, and voice)
  • Paediatric Clinics (speech, language, and literacy)
  • Phonological Awareness for Literacy (PAL) Intensive Program
  • Hospital Based Clinics (acute and rehabilitation)
  • Voice clinic at RBWH
  • School Based Clinics (literacy, speech and/or language)


For all general current HDR student queries and enquiries related to applications contact the HDR Liaison Officer: or +61 7 3365 7123

For all enquiries related to research in the School, contact the Senior Administration Officer (Research): or +61 7 3365 2074

  • Professor David Copland

    Vice-Chancellors T & R Fellowship, Deputy Chair, Research and Postgraduate Studies Committee
    Vice-Chancellors T&R Fellowship
    School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences
    Affiliate Professor
    UQ Centre for Clinical Research
  • Dr Sarah Wallace

    Lecturer in Speech Pathology
    School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences