Speech Difficulties 1: Nature and Investigation

Course code HCS6021
15 credits

This module offers a study of the nature and assessment of developmental speech difficulties. It examines how speech difficulties can be investigated from the following perspectives: medical, developmental, linguistic, cross-linguistic, phonetic, acoustic, psycholinguistic, psychosocial, and educational. The following topics are included in this module: Clinical Phonetic Transcription: Theory and Practice; Phonetic and Phonological Analysis of Speech Difficulties; Psycholinguistic Assessment; Childhood Apraxia of Speech; Cross-linguistic Perspectives and Multilingual issues; Connected Speech Problems; Prosodic Problems; Instrumental Approaches to Assessment of Speech Difficulties.

Suitable for:

Speech and Language Therapists and other professionals with a special interest in speech difficulties and who have some background knowledge of phonetics.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of the module students are expected to be able to:

  • Demonstrate knowledge about the nature of developmental speech difficulties from a range of perspectives.
  • Assess clients with speech difficulties in a systematic way.
  • Select and design investigations of speech difficulties.
  • Evaluate investigations of group or case studies of individuals with developmental speech difficulties across preschool/school ages.
  • Apply critical analysis skills to reading and study.

Teaching Methods

The module content is delivered online and includes guided independent study, using online reading material available from the University Library. Students are supported by University tutors via online discussion boards and email. Online learning will be supplemented by an optional 2 day study block in Sheffield.


The module starts in January of each year. The module runs over a period of 12 weeks, and this 15 credit module should take about 150 hours to complete (including preparation for the assignment). See timetable for the year.


A 3,000-word assignment.

Associated programmes

CORE Module on:

PGCert/PGDip/MSc Speech Difficulties

Fees and funding for the module

Fee information 

Fully funded places may be available for NHS employees in Yorkshire and the Humber and East Midlands, please email hcs-admissions@sheffield.ac.uk

How to apply for the module

Please visit our how to apply page.

Help for disabled applicants

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