Samantha Burr

Speech and Language Therapist

Clinical Academic

My role

I am a clinical academic SLT working in Solent NHS Trust.  I work full-time, spending 25% of my time working in the community in mainstreams schools, and the other 75% of my time on an NIHR Doctoral Fellowship exploring infant feeding, sucking behaviours and speech sound development.

My responsibilities

My responsibilities as a clinical academic SLT involve working with my clinical caseload, and also with our SLT Lead for Speech Sound Disorders (SSD) Lead to support the development and evidencing of the care pathway for SSD, as well as supporting, developing and providing training to clinical colleagues.

Academically, I am continually recruiting NHS patients into my study, with invaluable support from the clinical SLT team across Hampshire, Portsmouth and Southampton. I am also working to raise the profile of clinical research among the Solent SLT team through workshops and presentations at staff meetings.

My background

In 2009 I completed the BA in German and Linguistic Science at University of York and worked as a freelance translator in Germany (Deutsche Welle, Berlin) and England, while I gathered volunteering experience with children and adults with speech, language and communication needs. In 2011 I began my professional training at University College London and completed the MSc Speech & Language Sciences in 2013. In September 2013 I accepted a NQP post with Solent NHS Trust as a community Paediatric Speech and Language Therapist, and in June 2015 I took up a Band 6 role within the trust and continued to develop my specialist interest in speech sound disorders and research. In March 2016 I secured funding from Solent NHS Trust to complete a Clinical Academic Internship to support the preparation of my application for an HEE/NIHR ICA Clinical Doctoral Research Fellowship. My application was successful and the 4-year fellowship began in June 2018.

Why I love my job

The Children’s Therapy Service SLT team is an energised and dedicated group to be a part of and I feel very fortunate to work with a team of experienced and highly skilled clinicians who really thrive on working with children and their families to get the best outcomes for them. My clinical academic role enables me to use and develop skills and knowledge outside of but inherently embedded within my everyday clinical practice. I find my work stimulating and diverse and I really enjoy being able to share learning with my clinical and research colleagues to enhance and improve staff and patient experience. In essence, my clinical academic role enables me to be me, to use and develop my skills and to put my enthusiasm and creativity to optimum use.   

More about me

I love spending time with my family in the garden or out on our bikes. I enjoy cycling, swimming and being outdoors – and food! I like to visit friends abroad and spend time with family.  

Current projects/research studies I am involved with

I am in year 2 of a 4 year NIHR fellowship exploring whether there is an association between the way babies are fed, their sucking habits and their speech sound development at age 5 years.