Moor House Therapy Department continues to be at the forefront of research into the effectiveness of therapy interventions for school aged students with severe speech and language impairments. This ensures the work we do with students is driven by the most current evidence. Our research studies are led by Dr Susan Ebbels, Speech & Language Therapist and Moor House Research and Development Coordinator, and are carried out in collaboration with Universities.
Current intervention studies
We are currently carrying out a study focused on intervention for comprehension and production of complex language. Many children with developmental language disorder have difficulties understanding and using sentences where the word order is crucial to comprehension. We are focusing our intervention at different levels according to the needs of the children. The primary focus is on comprehension, but we are also measuring expression.
Published articles by Moor House professionals
Moor House staff are shown in bold
2017) Evidence based pathways to intervention for children with language disorders. PeerJ Preprints5:e2951v1 Link(
Gallgaher, A.L & Ebbels, S.H. (2017) Language, literacy and numeracy outcomes of adolescents with (Developmental) Language Disorder following a collaborative model of SLT delivery in specialist education. Moor House School & College, Surrey, UK. Link
Ebbels, S. H., Wright, L., Brockbank, S., Godfrey, C., Harris, C., Leniston, H., Neary, K., Nicoll, H., Nicoll, L., Scott, J. and Marić, N. (2017), Effectiveness of 1:1 speech and language therapy for older children with (developmental) language disorder. International Journal of Language & Communication Disorders, 52: 528–539. doi:10.1111/1460-6984.12297. Link
Ebbels, S. H. (2017) Intervention research: appraising study designs, interpreting findings and creating research in clinical practice. International Journal of Speech Language Pathology, 19, 218-231. doi:10.1080/17549507.2016.1276215 Link. Submitted version (preprint)
Bishop, D. V. M., Snowling, M. J., Thompson, P. A., Greenhalgh, T., & Catalise-consortium*. (2017). Phase 2 of CATALISE: a multinational and multidisciplinary Delphi consensus study of problems with language development: Terminology. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 58: 1068–1080. doi:10.1111/jcpp.12721. Link
*Catalise consortium includes S.H. Ebbels
Bishop, D. V., Snowling, M. J., Thompson, P. A., Greenhalgh, T & Catalise consortium*. (2016). CATALISE: a multinational and multidisciplinary Delphi consensus study. Identifying language impairments in children (2167-9843). Link
*Catalise consortium includes S.H. Ebbels
Ebbels, S (2014) Introducing the SLI debate.International Journal of Language and Communication Disorders. 49, 377-380. Link
Ebbels, S. H. (2014). Effectiveness of intervention for grammar in school-aged children with primary language impairments: a review of the evidence.Child Language Teaching and Therapy, 30: 7-40. Link
Ebbels, S. H., Maric, N., Murphy, A., & Turner, G. (2014) Improving comprehension in adolescents with severe receptive language impairments: a randomised control trial of intervention for coordinating conjunctions. International Journal of Language and Communication Disorders, 49: 30-48. Link
Kulkarni, A., Pring, T. & Ebbels, S.H. (2014). Evaluating the effectiveness of therapy based around Shape Coding to develop the use of regular past tense morphemes in two children with language impairments. Child Language Teaching and Therapy, 30: 245-254. Link
Conti-Ramsden, G., Bishop, D., Clark, B., Frazier Norbury, C., & Snowling, M. (2014). Specific Language Impairment (SLI): The internet campaign to raise awareness of SLI. Psychology of Language and Communication, 18: 143 -148 Link
Conti-Ramsden, G., Bishop, D., Clark, B., Frazier Norbury, C., & Snowling, M. (2014). Toma de conciencia sobre los trastornos específicos del lenguaje: la campan ̃a RALLI en Internet. Logopedia, Foniatría y Audiología 33: 51 -54 Link
Ebbels, S.H., Nicoll, H., Clark, B., Eachus, B., Gallagher, A., Horniman, K., Jennings, M., McEvoy, K., Nimmo, E., Turner., G. (2012). Effectiveness of semantic therapy for children with word finding difficulties in pupils with a persistent language impairment: a randomised control trial. International Journal of Language and Communication Disorders, 47: 35-51. Winner of the 2012 IJLCD Article Prize Link
Ebbels, S.H., Dockrell, J.D. & van der Lely, H.K.J (2012) Production of change-of-state, change-of-location and alternating verbs: a comparison of children with specific language impairment and typically developing children. Language and Cognitive Processes, 27 (9), 1312-1333. Link
Ebbels, S.H., Dockrell, J.D. & van der Lely, H.K.J (2012). Non-word repetition in adolescents with SLI.International Journal of Language & Communication Disorders, 47, 257-273. Link
Bishop, D.V.M., Clark, B., Conti-Ramsden, G., Frazier Norbury, C., & Snowling, M. (2012). RALLI: An internet campaign for raising awareness of language learning impairments. Child Language Teaching and Therapy. 28: 259 -262 Link
Ebbels, S.H. (2008). Improving grammatical skill in children with specific language impairment. In Norbury, C.F.., Tomblin, J.B. & Bishop, D.V.M (Eds.), Understanding developmental language disorders: from theory to practice (pp. 149-174). Hove: Psychology Press.
Ebbels, S.H. (2007). Teaching grammar to school-aged children with Specific Language Impairment using Shape Coding. Child Language Teaching and Therapy, 23, 67-93. Most downloaded paper every year since publication Link. Vodcast.
Ebbels, S.H., van der Lely, H.K.J., and Dockrell, J.E. (2007). Intervention for verb argument structure in children with persistent SLI: a randomized control trial. Journal of Speech Language and Hearing Research,50, 1330-1349. Link
Joffe, V. L., Cain, K. and Maric, N. (2007), Comprehension problems in children with specific language impairment: does mental imagery training help? International Journal of Language & Communication Disorders, 42: 648–664. Summary. Link
Marshall, C, Ebbels, S, Harris, J, van der Lely, H. (2002) Investigating the impact of prosodic complexity on the speech of children with Specific Language Impairment. UCL Working Papers in Linguistics, 14,43-66
Ebbels, S. & van der Lely, H. (2001). Meta-syntactic therapy using visual coding for children with severe persistent SLI. International Journal of Language & Communication Disorders, 36(supplement), 345-350. Submitted article
Ebbels, S. (2000) Psycholinguistic profiling of a hearing-impaired child. Child Language Teaching and Therapy, 16, 3-22. Link
Dent, H. and Clark, B. (1996) A two-pronged approach to assessment: combining psycholinguistic and instrumental procedures in the investigation of a developmental speech and language disorder. UCL Department of Human Communication Science Work in Progress (Chandler House, 2 Wakefield Street, London WC1N 1PG). 6, 44-54
Dent, H. and Clark, R. (1996) Applying psycholinguistic and instrumental procedures to assessment: A description of a single case study. Issues in Normal and Disordered Child Language: from Phonology to Narrative. Proceedings of the Child Language Seminar. The University of Reading.
Conference presentations (not published elsewhere)
Ebbels, S.H., Bell, L., Brockbank, S., Harris, C.,Heine, C., Leniston, H., Marić, N., Morrison, M., Nicoll, H., Nicoll, L., Perovic, A., Roberts, V., Scott J. (2015) Intervention on comprehension of complex language for adolescents with developmental language impairments. Oral Presentation at Child Language Symposium, 20-21 July 2015, Warwick, England.
Nicoll, L., & Ebbels, S.H (2014) Developing the ability of 14-15 year olds with developmental language impairments to explain the meaning of idioms: A comparison of 1:1 and classroom intervention. Poster presented at conference of the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists, 18-19 Sept 2014, Leeds, England.
Campbell, L., & Ebbels, S.H (2014) Effectiveness of Speech and Language Therapy within a Post-16 Provision. Poster presented at conference of the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists, 18-19 Sept 2014, Leeds, England. Link
Nicoll, H., Godfrey, C. O’Sullivan, S., & Ebbels, S.H (2012) Can we improve comprehension of vocabulary in secondary-aged students with language impairments? Evaluating the effectiveness of speech and language therapy in a Key Stage 3 Science lesson. Poster presented at conference of the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists, 11-12 Sept 2012, Manchester, England. Link
Nicoll, H & Ebbels, S.H (2011) Semantic therapy to improve developmental word finding difficulties: Does the method of delivery impact effectiveness? Oral presentation at “Lost for Words: Lost for Life?” conference on SLCN in older children and young people. 15-17 June 2011, City University London, England. Slides
Middleton, H., Campbell, C., Scott, J., Vallance, J. & Carter, D. (2011) Enabling students with SLI to access the English Curriculum in Key Stage Four. Poster presented at “Lost for Words: Lost for Life?” conference on SLCN in older children and young people. 15-17 June 2011, City University London, England. Poster
Nicoll, H. & Middleton, H. (2007) English G.C.S.E and severe language impairment. Poster presented at Afasic 4th international symposium,Warwick,UK. Poster