Aine Kearns

Name: Aine Kearns

Position: PhD student


Anna Trace

Name: Anna Trace

Position: PhD Student


Telephone: +353 (0)21 490 4503


Research Interests

Collaboration and primary care; Interdisciplinary Education; Motivational Interviewing in healthcare settings ; Positive Psychology (Mindfulness meditation / Prevention programmes).

My research interest lies within the general area of human interaction and relationships, focusing specifically on understanding the processes of collaboration among healthcare professional groups. I am particularly interested in how groups construct their identities and culture. This interest has grown out of my experience as a counselling psychologist working for over a decade within a healthcare group, now a primary care team. Not only does this professional involvement influence my teaching; but it provides a fertile ground for research. It is widely acknowledged at a policy level, both nationally (National Health Strategy 2001; Primary Care Strategy 2001; Vision for Change 2006) and internationally (World health Report 2001), that primary care should be the cornerstone of modern health services, with the primary care team its central location. It is therefore crucial that there is sound research on the processes of collaboration in those teams to inform practice and to develop further theoretical knowledge on group processes.

Further Info:


Deirdre O'Leary

‌Name: Deirdre O'Leary

Position: PhD student

Telephone: +353 (0)21 4901609



Deirdre O'Leary



Deirdre is currently studying her PhD in the department. She was awarded the Government of Ireland Postgraduate Scholarship from the Irish research Council. Her PhD study focuses on the assessment of speech intelligibility in Down syndrome using perceptual and acoustic analysis.

Deirdre graduated with a BSc. Hons Degree in Speech and Language Therapy at the Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences here at UCC in 2013.  She then went on to complete a Masters by Research in UCC also. The title of her study was “The impact of an unfamiliar accent on thr sentence comprehension of children with Down syndrome.”

Deirdre then worked as a speech and language therapist in a variety of settings with both adults and children. She also worked as problem-based learning tutor in UCC.

Deirdre recently began working as a research assistant in UCC for a HRB funded research project exploring prosody skills in children with spina bifida hydrocephalus.

Deirdre is a member of the Irish Association of Speech and Language Therapists and certified by CORU.


Positions Held:

Speech and language therapist- Down Syndrome Ireland (adults and paediatrics)

Problem-based learning tutor in UCC

Speech and language therapist- HSE South-South Lee (adults and paediatrics)

Speech and language therapist-South Infirmary Victoria University Hospital (adult acute)

Speech and language therapist-HSE South-Kerry (paediatrics) 



Current research

Speech in Down Syndrome

Investigating prosodic skills in children with spina bifida

Previous Research

Investigating effect of speaker accent on comprehension in typically developing children and children with Down syndrome


Areas of Interest
o Accents
o Down syndrome
o Children’s speech & language
o Prosody

Dominika Lisiecka

Name: Dominika Lisiecka

Position: PhD student




Dominika graduated with a Master’s Degree in Speech & Language Therapy from Academy of Education in Warsaw (2003). She has been working as a speech & language therapist in County Kerry since 2005. Her clinical experience includes community, residential and acute settings (both peadiatric and adults with wide range of difficulties). Her particular interest is in feeding and swallowing disorders, especially in neurological conditions.


Current Research

Currently Dominika pursues a PhD at UCC. Her qualitative study is focused on the lived experience of dysphagia in Motor Neuron Disease (MND) from the perspective of the patient and carer. This project aligns with the top 20 research priorities identified for therapy professionals in Ireland (HRB 2010). It is known that appropriate management of dysphagia has significant prognostic implications in MND (Cameron & Rosenfield, 2002; Simmons, 2005), yet little is known about the impact of dysphagia on the lives of both adults with MND and their carers. This knowledge is needed to support these two groups in the most efficient way, where the health resources are based on identified needs, and to increase awareness of dysphagia and MND in the Irish society and beyond. This project arises from Dominika’s clinical experience with MND in both acute and community settings and her involvement with the Irish MND Association.

MSc Students

Current MSc students in the Dept. of Speech & Hearing Sciences

Amy Culloty:   

Caoimhe Bowles:

Sandra Keyes: 

Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences

Eolaíochtaí Urlabhra agus Éisteachta

1st Floor, Brookfield Health Sciences Complex, U.C.C., College Road, Cork.