Dr Caroline Pickstone, MCSLT, MA(Psych), PhD

Hon Research Associate & Senior Manager, South Yorkshire Comprehensive Local Research Network (CLRN)

Picture of Caroline

University of Sheffield,
219 Portobello,
S1 4DR

Tel: +44 (0) 114 222 8383
Fax: +44 (0) 114 222 8341
E-mail: c.pickstone@sheffield.ac.uk

Research Interests

I am a speech & language therapist by background with wide experience of management and leadership now working full time in the South Yorkshire CLRN. I have combined work as a health researcher with NHS practice since winning a prestigious Department of Health Research Fellowship Award in 2000 and combine research with NHS research management.

My PhD research was set in a community based early intervention programme (Sure Start) and looked at screening for developmental language difficulties and reach of the eligible population.
My ongoing research interests include:

  • Risk management for research.
  • Developing the evidence base to inform commissioning
  • Involvement of service users in health and social care research.
  • Complex interventions in paediatrics.
  • Allied health research

My research work included consultancy, working on projects for fixed periods of time, funded projects and I have a combination of skills in troubleshooting, clinical practice, leadership and management and research.

Activities and Distinctions

  • Organisational management for the PoNDER Trial (2003-6), ScHARR.
  • Review of the opportunities for Post Graduate Nurse Education and Research at the University of Sheffield (2006) (working with Professor Pam Enderby).
  • A review of interventions to promote speech and language development in Sure Start programmes (work with DMB Hall & Sawyer, commissioned by the National Evaluation of Sure Start) (2005-6).
  • A review of the NICE Single Technology Assessment process (work commissioned by the National Institute for Clinical Excellence)(2007).


During 2007-8, I served as Research Councillor for the Royal College of Speech & Language Therapists working to develop infra structure and research capacity in the profession. I collaborate with an alliance of research teams interested in complex interventions in the field of paediatrics including:

  • Professor Sue Roulstone, University of the West of England.
  • Dr Juliet Goldbart and Julie Marshall, both of Manchester Metropolitan University.

Key publications since 2001

  • ROULSTONE, S., GOLDBART, J., MARSHALL, J., PICKSTONE, C. & Rees, A. (In Press) A systematic review of environmental interventions to improve child language outcomes for children with primary language impairment II: methodology and preliminary findings. Submitted to the Journal of Special Educational Needs Research. Invited paper for Special issue.
  • PICKSTONE, C., MARSHALL, J., GOLDBART., ROULSTONE, S. & REES, A. (In Press) A systematic review of environmental interventions to improve child language outcomes for children with primary language impairment I: commissioning and the use of evidence. Submitted to the Journal of Special Educational Needs Research. Invited paper for Special issue
  • MARSHALL, J., GOLDBART, J., PICKSTONE, C. & ROULSTONE, S. (In Press) Analysis of the application of systematic reviewing in speech and language therapy. Invited paper for Special Issue of International Journal of Language and Communication Disorders
  • HANNON, P. H., PICKSTONE, C., SUCKLING, R. & CROFTS, D. (2008) The reach of preschool intervention: a case study of a Sure Start programme. Evidence and Policy. 4, 3 pp 205-226
  • PICKSTONE, C., NANCARROW. S, COOKE. J, VERNON, W., BOYCE, R., MOUNTAIN, G. & CAMPBELL, J. (2008) Building research capacity in the Allied Health Professions. Evidence and Policy, 4, 1, pp 53-68
  • PICKSTONE, C. (2006) Triage in Speech and Language Therapy. Chapter 7 IN ROULSTONE, S. (Ed.) Prioritising child health. London, Routledge.
  • ENDERBY, P. & PICKSTONE, C. (2005) How many people have communication disorders and why does it matter? Advances in Speech-Language Pathology 7, 8. Assist Click here for paper
  • WEINBERGER, J., PICKSTONE, C. & HANNON, P. (Eds.) (2005) Learning from Sure Start, Maidenhead, Berkshire, UK, McGraw-Hill Education / Open University PressClick here for paper
  • PICKSTONE, C. (2003) A pilot study of paraprofessional screening of child language in community settings. Child Language Teaching and Therapy, 19, 49-65.Click here for paper
  • SAWYER, V., PICKSTONE, C. & HALL, D. M. B. (Submitted) Themed study of speech, language and literacy interventions in fifteen Sure Start local programmes.
  • PICKSTONE, C., HANNON, P. & FOX, L. (2002) Surveying and screening preschool language development in community-focused intervention programmes: a review of instruments. Child: Care, Health and Development, 28, 251-264.

Teaching/Postgraduate Students

  • Experienced supervisor of Master’s students.


Caroline Pickstone is based in the Rehabilitation and Assistive Technology Group and currently works for Professor Pam Enderby, Clinical Director of the SY CLRN.