Palin Stammering Therapy Study findings

Findings from a study by the Michael Palin Centre for Stammering, into the feasibility of Palin Stammering Therapy for school children.

Palin Stammering Therapy for School aged Children aged 8-14 (Palin STSC(8-14)) is a therapy programme developed by therapists at the Michael Palin Centre, for children who stammer and their parents. The aim of the 10-week programme is to: 

  • reduce the impact of the stammer on the child and parents 
  • encourage confident and competent communication 
  • increase parents' knowledge and confidence in how to support their child.

Aim of the study

A research team at the Michael Palin Centre, with co-investigators from the University of Essex and the University of Bedfordshire, ultimately want to conduct a large research trial to find out if Palin STSC(8-14) is more or less effective and cost-effective than the usual stammering therapy provided in NHS clinics. However, before that can happen, they needed to run this feasibility trial to test all the different parts that would be involved in a larger trial.


To carry out the research, the team used a mixture of assessments and interviews with parents, children, speech & language therapists (SLTs) and SLT managers. You can read all about the methods used, as well as more detailed description of the trial, at the BMC Springer Nature website


The researchers found that:

  1. SLTs, children and parents are willing to take part in this research and feel that it is important.
  2. Overall, children, parents and therapists found the therapy to be helpful and were positive about it.
  3. The research methods were largely acceptable. Some changes will be made to the assessment process to make it easier for children and families to complete.
  4. Following their training, therapists were able deliver the therapy as it was intended. 
  5. Based on the information collected, the Michael Palin Centre are able to cost the full trial.

Next steps

The research team concluded that a full trial comparing Palin STSC(8-14) with usual treatment delivered in the NHS, is possible and so will apply for funding to carry this out. The details of the feasibility trial and the results will be written up for submission to an open access peer reviewed journal.


Millard, S. K., Murphy, S., Barton, G., Leathersich, M., Mills, G., Rixon, L., ... & Joffe, V. (2022). Evaluating Palin Stammering Therapy for School Children (Palin STSC 8–14): protocol for a feasibility randomised controlled trial comparing Palin STSC (8–14) with usual treatment. Pilot and feasibility studies, 8(1), 1-14.

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