Thursday 13 June 2024 - Congratulations to Dr. Meg Thomas

Congratulations to our Cohort 1 student Meg Thomas who has passed her PhD viva today with corrections!

Meg is the fifth CDT student to pass their viva!

Meg was sponsored by Apple and her PhD investigated conversation and disfluencies in cognitive decline.

Huge thanks to her supervisors Dr Traci Walker and Professor Heidi Christensen and to Apple for all their support.

Thank you also to internal examiner Dr Stuart Cunningham and external examiner Dr Leendert Plug (University of Leeds).

Thursday 2 May 2024 - Congratulations to Dr. Will Ravenscroft

Congratulations to our Cohort 1 student Will Ravenscroft who has passed his PhD viva today with very minor corrections!

Will is the fourth CDT student to pass their viva!

Will was sponsored by 3M Health Information Systems and his PhD investigated speech separation in noisy reverberant acoustic environments.

Huge thanks to his supervisor Prof Thomas Hain, his second supervisor Dr Stefan Goetze, and to 3M for all their support.

Thank you also to internal examiner Dr Yoshi Gotoh and external examiner Prof Patrick Naylor (Imperial College London).

Wednesday 29 November 2023 - Congratulations to Dr. Tom Green

Congratulations to our Cohort 1 student Tom Green who has passed his PhD viva today with minor corrections!

Tom is the third CDT student to pass their viva (and the second in as many days)!

Tom was sponsored by TribePad and his PhD investigated the use of NLP to resolve mismatches between jobseekers and positions in recruitment.

Huge thanks to his supervisor Dr Diana Maynard, his second supervisor Prof Chenghua Lin, and to Tribepad for all their support.

Thank you also to internal examiner Dr Mark Stevenson and external examiner Dr Rudy Arthur.

Tuesday 28 November 2023 - Congratulations to Dr. Sebastian Vincent

Congratulations to our Cohort 1 student Sebastian Vincent who has passed his PhD viva today with minor corrections!

Sebastian is the second CDT student to pass their viva!

Huge thanks to his supervisor Dr Carol Scarton and to Chris Oakley, Charlotte Prescott, Chris Bayliss, and the rest of the team at his sponsor ZOO Digital for all their support.

Thank you also to internal examiner Prof Nikos Aletras and external examiner Dr Alexandra Birch.

Sebastian is now working at ZOO Digital as an AI Research Scientist. 

Monday 23 October 2023 - Congratulations to Dr. Danae Sánchez Villegas

Congratulations to our Cohort 1 student Danae Sánchez Villegas who has passed her PhD viva today with minor corrections!

Many thanks to the examiners Prof Andreas Vlachos (Cambridge) and Dr Carol Scarton (Sheffield).

Danae has made important contributions in multimodal computational social science working on modelling political ads, points-of-interest and influencers. She collaborated with researchers from Bloomberg and Utrecht University. Her work has been published at top-tier NLP conferences such as ACL and EMNLP. She was supervised by Prof Nikos Aletras.

Monday 18 September 2023 - Our fifth cohort of PhD students has started!

It's induction week again! 

We're super excited to be welcoming our brand new Cohort 5 PhD students to Sheffield and the CDT. We have lots of activities scheduled to help them settle in and get started on our unique training and research programme! 

Wednesday 9 August 2023 - First CDT PhD thesis submission!

Congratulations to our Cohort 1 student Danae Sánchez Villegas on being the first CDT student to submit their PhD thesis. Danae's thesis, entitled "Beyond Words: Analyzing Social Media with Text and Images", was supervised by Professor Nikos Aletras. 

We wish Danae the very best of luck with her viva! 

Friday 26 May 2023 - Annual Conference 2023 fast approaching!

Our third annual SLT CDT conference is fast approaching - just 2 more weeks to go!

This year, our conference is being held jointly with the national UK Speech 2023 conference in the University of Sheffield's newly opened The Wave building. We're really looking forward to showcasing our students' AI and ML speech and NLProc research projects and cohort projects. And as a further bonus, we're super excited to be joined by the students from the University of Edinburgh's CDT in Natural Language Processing

Thursday 16 February 2023 - ICASSP success

Three of our students - Will Ravenscroft, George Close, and Sebastian Ellis - have been successful in getting papers accepted at the 2023 IEEE International Conference on Acoustics, Speech, and Signal Processing (ICASSP 2023), which will take place in the Greek island of Rhodes from June 04 to June 10, 2023. 

ICASSP is the flagship conference of the IEEE Signal Processing Society (SPS) and has the highest h-index of any conference in the Signal Processing field according to Google Scholar's 2016 h-index.

Check out our students' publications page for Will's paper and George's paper as well as a whole host of previous papers!

Friday 27 January 2023 - Dates for Annual Conference 2023 confirmed!

We're super excited to confirm that our Annual Conference will be co-located with the national UK Speech conference. The dates for the conferences will be Monday 12 June to Thursday 15 June 2023.

Both conferences will be hosted in the Faculty of Engineering's grade II listed Sir Frederick Mappin Building, the Heartspace, and St George's Church lecture theatre.

It will bring together researchers and practitioners from a range of areas with interests in computational processing of speech signals and written language.

Check out our Annual Conference 2023 page - we'll be adding more details over the coming weeks!

Monday 11 July 2022 - CDT Student, Peter Vickers, at 8th Frederick Jelinek Memorial Summer Workshop

Our Cohort 1 student, Peter Vickers, is currently participating in the Eighth Frederick Jelinek Memorial Summer Workshop (JSALT 2022) which is being hosted at the Center for Language and Speech Processing at Johns Hopkins University, Whiting School of Engineering, Baltimore, USA.

The programme includes a comprehensive 2-week summer school on human language technologies (HLT), followed by intensive research projects on select topics for 6 weeks. The 8-week workshop provides an intense, dynamic intellectual environment in which undergraduates work closely alongside senior researchers as part of a multi-university research team, which has been assembled for the summer to attack HLT problem of current interest. The teams and topics for 2022 are: 

Peter is a graduate student member of the "Multi-lingual Speech to Speech Translation for Under-Resourced Languages" project. In preparation for this, Peter has attended planning workshops in Le Mans organised by the Horizon 2020 Marie Skłodowska-Curie Esperanto project team.

The photo below (from the Esperanto website) shows Peter with the other organisers at the Le Mans planning meeting.

Friday 10 June 2022 - Legasee mini-project legacy

This week saw our second annual conference (in-person this year) take place on Tuesday 7 and Wednesday 8 June in the University's iconic Diamond building.

The conference was a great success with over 120 attendees enjoying five fascinating keynotes from internationally recognised academic and industry researchers; various training programme spotlight talks; a Panel Discussion; and a poster session with 36 posters. 

One of the highlights was the session focusing on the amazing work our Cohort 3 students had done as part of their mini-project training component applying advanced speech and language AI technologies to UK charity Legasee's audio-visual recordings in order to support richer search and discovery results for end users. 

There are many challenges when dealing with oral history recordings such as Legasee’s (especially within a military context) including accents, dialects, conversational speech, emotion, specialised terminology, and names (codenames, geographical locations, battles, ships, vehicles, comrades, etc).

We were privileged to welcome Martin Bisiker, Founder & Trustee of the Legasee Educational Trust, to the conference and have him introduce the session and explain the need for this work.

Following the session, Martin said to the students: "I convey my sincere thanks for the effort that you've taken to enhance Legasee's search potential. There's no doubt that the charity now has an opportunity to take a big step forward in respect of what we offer."

Monday 28 March 2022 - Conference season!

Academic conferences provide an invaluable forum for disseminating research findings, engaging in scientific discussion, sparking new ideas, and fostering new collaborations.

This year sees many conferences making a welcome return to being held in-person. The online versions held during the height of the pandemic were really important in supporting the ongoing dissemination of research but nothing quite matches being fully immersed in an in-person conference. Our students are excited about attending a range of upcoming conferences. For some, it’s their very first experience. Conferences allow them to gain invaluable experience of presenting their work, explore new research, and network with experts in their field. 

In the UKRI Centre for Doctoral Training in Speech and Language Technologies and their Applications, we understand the importance of these experiences. To support this, every student receives a generous training allowance (Research Training Support Grant - RTSG) to cover the costs of attending conferences, workshops, summer schools, etc as well as costs associated with executing their PhD project (e.g., experimental costs, specialist equipment, etc).

Cohort 1 student Meg Thomas participated in last month’s Sheffield Dementia & Alzheimer's Research UK Yorkshire Network Conference 2022. The meeting featured the Sheffield Dementia group, a newly formed, interdisciplinary, cross-faculty group of scientists and clinicians. Meg said,

“Finally, two years into my PhD, I had my first opportunity to attend (and present) at a conference in real life as opposed to online!

The Sheffield Dementia Conference 2022 was a small conference aimed at researchers working on Dementia throughout different faculties in the department, as well as other universities, with researchers from universities such as York and Leeds presenting their work too. 

As this was my first time presenting in person, I was incredibly nervous! After an introductory talk from the conference organisers, we had a welcome talk from Dame Pamela Shaw, a professor of neurology at the university whose list of accolades is far too long to mention here. We then heard talks from various early-career researchers before a quick refreshment break, after which it was my time to present! This was a strange experience for me as I was the only person from computer science there, so the work I was presenting was completely different to a lot of the other work being shown. Despite this, the presentation ‘'Speech and the Effects of the Comorbidity of Depression and MCI'’ was well received and people had some insightful questions for me. The rest of the day was spent listening to talks from other researchers and making new connections, including a student from the University of York who will be attending another conference I’ll be attending in July. To round off the event we had a keynote talk from Professor Sir John Hardy, a fellow of the Royal Society famous for his influential work on Alzheimer’s disease, which served as a nice reminder as to why working in this research area is so important. 

Attending in-person conferences was definitely one of the aspects of the CDT that I was looking forward to the most, so I was heartbroken when Covid hit and all plans were put on hold. I’m in the planning stages of attending INTERSPEECH in South Korea, and the Alzheimer's Association International Conference (AAIC) in San Diego. Attending these conferences is essential for networking and gaining conference experience!”

Our students will be attending a number of international conferences over the next few months so do look out for them and say hello:

In addition, we will be hosting our second annual conference (in-person this year) on Tuesday 7 and Wednesday 8 June for which registration is now open. We hope to see you soon!

Thursday 27 January 2022 - Our students are working with national charity Legasee

With 2022 well underway, the UKRI Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) in Speech and Language Technologies (SLT) is looking forward to a host of exciting activities in the year ahead. These include our annual conference, Cohort 3 starting their PhD projects, welcoming our fourth cohort of students, as well as various interesting training events. 

As we look forward to another busy year, it is important not to lose sight of the past and what we can learn from it; something our Cohort 3 students are currently appreciating with their Mini-Project work with UK charity Legasee

Legasee is a team of volunteer film makers, writers, designers and storytellers who are passionate about capturing British military history through the personal recollections of the men and women who witnessed it first-hand. They provide students, teachers and researchers with unique access to a hi-definition video archive of interviews with veterans of military conflict from 1939 to the present day.

There are many challenges when dealing with oral history recordings such as Legasee’s (especially within a military context) including accents, dialects, conversational speech, emotion, specialised terminology, and names (codenames, geographical locations, battles, ships, vehicles, comrades, etc).

Over the course of six months, our Cohort 3 students are working in two teams to apply advanced speech and language AI technologies to the audio-visual archive recordings in order to combat (pun intended!) some of these difficulties and support richer search and discovery results for end users. 

Our students have said “It's fantastic to be able to work on a project that illustrates the powerful applications of speech and language technology. During our working with Legasee, we've been able to understand the balancing act required between doing meaningful research while ensuring that the technology can be utilised in practice”. 

Martin Bisiker, Founder & Trustee of the Legasee Educational Trust, said “The work that these remarkable students are doing with Legasee would have been unimaginable 10 years ago. Collectively, they are developing an automated speech recognition system that will pave the way to make online archives like our own more accessible to more people. As the voices of many of the veterans in our archive pass away, this work stands as a testimony to the value we place on their wartime sacrifices."

We are looking forward to seeing their final systems and the impact it can have in the wider community when they finish in March.

If you are interested in doing a PhD with us and would like to join our September 2022 intake of students (“Cohort 4”) and participate in next year’s exciting Mini-Project, we would love to hear from you. For more information on how to apply please visit If your organisation is interested in working with the CDT (via the Mini-Project, seeking free advice from the SLT Consultancy Hub, or by co-sponsoring a PhD student) please do get in touch by emailing 

Monday 21 December 2020 - NLP Conference Success for Danae

It is a busy time of year for most, not least our PhD students. We caught up with Danae, from our first cohort, to find out about her recent success and attendance at three different NLP conferences.

‘Attending academic conferences is an important way to build skills as a PhD student. You get the opportunity to ask questions, get new ideas, ask for practical advice and meet professionals in the field. Given the COVID-19 pandemic, this year most conferences took place online. I recently attended 3 virtual conferences: ACL, EMNLP, and AACL.’

ACL 2020

The 58th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (ACL) took place online from 5th to 10th July 2020. ACL is the leading conference in the field of computational linguistics, covering a wide variety of research areas dealing with computational approaches to natural language.

In this conference, I presented the paper Analyzing Political Parody in Social Media. This paper is co-authored with Antonis Maronikolakis, my supervisor Nikolaos Aletras (University of Sheffield), and with Daniel Preoţiuc-Pietro (Bloomberg). We present the first study of parody using methods from computational linguistics and machine learning. We introduce a freely available large-scale dataset containing a total of 131,666 English tweets from 184 real and corresponding parody accounts, and evaluate and analyze a range of neural models achieving high predictive accuracy.

Also, I attended a mentoring session led by Dr. Alona Fyshe from University of Alberta, where PhD students could ask general questions. A common concern among students is how to balance work and social life. Dr. Fyshe recommended the book Deep Work: Rules for Concentrated Success in a Distracted World, a guide to intense concentration in a distraction-free environment that leads to rapid, efficient learning and results. She reminded us to have fun, too!

EMNLP 2020

The 2020 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing (EMNLP) took place online from 16th to 20th November 2020. The Keynote by Dr. Janet Pierrehumbert, from University of Oxford, discussed the importance of the effects of context when determining the efficiency of NLP systems, as well as the variability in language among individuals. She reminded us to be cautious of what we are evaluating. For example, when using annotators, we should take into account that annotation depends on the point of view and lived experience of the participants, thus, we shouldn’t treat annotators as having access to ground truth. 

AACL 2020

The 1st Conference of the Asia-Pacific Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics (AACL) took place online from 4th to 7th December 2020. In this conference I presented the paper Point-of-Interest Type Inference from Social Media Text. This work is co-authored with Daniel Preoţiuc-Pietro (Bloomberg), and my supervisor Nikolaos Aletras (University of Sheffield). We present the first study on the relationship between language of a social media message, and the type information associated with the point of interest (POI) the message was sent from. We develop a large-scale dataset of tweets mapped to their POI category, and conduct an analysis to uncover characteristics specific to place type. Also, we train predictive models to infer the POI category using only the text of the tweet and the posting time. Inferring the place type from the text could help geographers and social scientists research mobility trends, and how people interact with places in real-time.

Tuesday 3 November 2020 - The CDT at Interspeech

Within the CDT there is an emphasis on attending and participating in academic conferences. Not only to understand the latest developments in the field, but to network and communicate with the wider SLT community. Four of our students from across the two cohorts attended this year’s Interspeech Conference

Introduction from Hussein

Interspeech is one of the foremost academic conferences for Speech and Language Technology. It incorporates a variety of specialities and disciplines and provides a forum to discuss and share the latest research and innovations. 

This year’s Interspeech was scheduled to be held in Shanghai; however, it was converted to a fully virtual conference. As an attendee this was extremely beneficial as all sessions were timed and organised so I could easily participate and discuss further with the authors of certain papers.

This year has been especially good for the University’s Speech and Hearing (SpandH) research group. As a CDT student this is inspiring to see and be involved in.

Paper Spotlight

Our Cohort 2 member, Jonathan Clayton, had a paper published this year. 

‘The paper adapts the work which I produced as part of my MSc project with another student and supervisors at the University of Edinburgh. In this work, we investigated the utility of lightweight EEG (ElectroEncephaloGraphy) devices for the decoding of spoken, heard and imagined speech from brainwave signals. The research was aimed at contributing towards the development of brain-computer interfaces which could be used as communication aid for people with speech deficits or impairments. The work involved the collection of a dataset containing EEG recordings, which has been made publicly available.’

Interspeech Mentoring 

Meg attended one of the mentoring sessions available.

‘Instead of joining hundreds of other academics, professionals, and students in Shanghai, I had to join from the comfort of my bedroom. Nevertheless, this year’s ISCA-SAC provided an incredible opportunity to talk with industry professionals and ask questions about their experiences in moving between industry and academia. With our industry links being a big part of the CDT at Sheffield, it feels like my options are open for both staying and progressing in academia, or making the move over to industry. This mentoring session let me talk with Visar Berisha, associate professor at Arizona State University, and Rosario Signorello, a linguist team lead at Apple in Barcelona. Both had different perspectives on the pros and cons of staying in academia vs moving into industry, but two key pieces of advice were mirrored by both; find the things you want to prioritise and don’t feel bad making career decisions based on these (be it staying close to family or accepting positions further afield to experience more of the world), and it is going to be hard work no matter where you end up. Luckily the CDT is keeping us busy enough to get used to this one!’

Tuesday 27 October 2020 - The new cohort has arrived!

We’re really pleased to have recently welcomed our second cohort of PhD students to the CDT. All of these eleven students have exceptionally strong and diverse academic and professional backgrounds, which help to make our centre a vibrant place to learn new skills and techniques and undertake ambitious research. These academic backgrounds include; mathematics, physics, languages, linguistics, statistics, computer science and engineering disciplines. Not to mention varied previous career experience including secondary school teaching, academic research, industrial research, and AI software development. 

The last few weeks have been an exciting time – they’ve been getting to know each other, their fellow students in cohort 1, as well as all the academic staff involved in the CDT. Despite the constraints associated with the pandemic, we were still able to organise a busy and varied induction week to get them settled into life at Sheffield and the CDT while conforming with all the national and university safety guidelines. 

The CDT’s innovative Postgraduate Diploma in Speech and Language Technologies Leadership (which is integrated with the PhD and runs throughout their 4 year programme) has kicked off and they are already actively involved in journal clubs, the collation of SLT-related MOOC resources, and a full-cohort 6-month SLT-related R&D group project! 

What they say; 

One of our new students, Jonathan, says “I am excited to be involved in an interesting, collaborative programme. So far, it has been slightly different from my expectations of a standard PhD being a completely solitary endeavour (ironically, despite the social distancing). I am looking forward to learning more from professors and fellow students. The mini-project that we have just embarked upon (creating a virtual “reader’s companion” to assist with remembering events from a novel) looks to be both challenging and stimulating.

Another of our new students, Guanyu, adds “One of the most exciting moments for me in 2020 was receiving the offer of a place on the CDT programme. As a language teacher, I appreciate the opportunity to join the programme and see what SLTs can do regarding second language acquisition and cross-cultural communication. Thanks to the openness of the programme, I can learn from classmates and senior student fellows who come from different backgrounds. I can truly feel the diversity and support in various activities.”

Rhiannon had this to say “The first few weeks have involved lots and lots of reading. My background is physics and statistics, so I’ve never studied SLTs directly, and filling in some of the gaps in my knowledge has taken me in a lot of different directions. The activities we’ve been doing have really helped, such as reading specific papers for the Journal Club, or collating online resources that we can refer to later. It’s also good to have the rest of the cohort – we’ve got a mixed bag of interests, so we should be able to help each other out! The cohort-based group structure is one of the things that drew me to the CDT.”

We really look forward to getting to know cohort 2 better over the coming weeks and months while supporting them through their journey to achieving their PhD with Integrated PGDip.

Tuesday 1 September 2020- Cohort 2 are on their way…

The count down has begun. We have recruited eleven outstanding students to start our program in September 2020.

In early August we had an online Q&A session for our new starters with the CDT team and some of cohort 1 members. It was a chance for them to see some friendly faces and ask any questions they had about preparing to come to Sheffield and embarking on a PhD.

The CDT team are busily making plans for their Induction Week and all the new activities for 2020/21. We cannot wait to meet them in person but, rest assured, all our plans conform to Government and University guidance.

To help our new members of the CDT, we asked one of last year’s students if they had any advice to share…

Meg’s Top Tips for new PhD students

Friday 6 March 2020 - International Women's Day

In celebration of International Women’s day, Rachael Reitz (CDT Administrator) sat down with Dr Heidi Christensen and our CDT students Meg and Danae to talk about their experiences as a woman in Computer Science. Computer Science is a very interdisciplinary area of study and research, which has traditionally suffered from a gender imbalance. 

Our students have come into the CDT from a wide range of mixed academic backgrounds. We talked about what it was like to come from different backgrounds and perspectives. From Linguistics, where there was a large majority of women, to Computer Engineering where the scales were tipped heavily in the other direction. 

‘I worked as a data scientist for two years and was the only female data scientist. It could be difficult at times as I felt I had to prove my knowledge.’

‘I was in a cohort of mainly women but the majority of lecturers were male.’ 

The CDT, in particular, is focused on closing the gender gap by seeking out and accepting students from a wider range of backgrounds. Along with this ethos, the Department is working hard to bring a balance through a variety of initiatives including the Athena SWAN award. You can read more about this here:

‘When I first came to Sheffield I was impressed with the balance.’ 

‘I had been warned that coming into Computer Science, I would have to work harder to be listened to, but generally that has not been the case for me. It has not been too different to my past experiences or too steep a learning curve.’

There are still barriers that exist, including; the ‘stereotype’ of what a computer scientist looks like; the idea that someone working with computers being a ‘hacker’; and myths around certain subjects being for boys and for girls, that should be broken. 

‘At first I thought it was a brave decision to choose a career in Computer Science, but going forward it shouldn’t be seen as being brave, it’s just another option that is there.’

‘I wish I had known at a younger age that you can work with language alongside computers. And that there is a lot of room in Computer Science for the things that I am interested in.’

We rounded off our discussion with advice for encouraging more women to get involved in Computer Science. The key being increasing awareness of what options are out there and a greater understanding about the broad area of engineering. 

‘Find what it is you can contribute: the different point of view you bring and what you have to give that is different. Be yourself.’ 

‘Be proud of your background and what you can bring. You have to find your own feet.’ 

You can find out more about the Sheffield Women in Computer Science Society (SWiCS) here and see how you can get involved;

Tuesday 7 January 2020 - Student Profile: Hussein

Name: Hussein Yusufali

Academic Background: BSc Physics, University of Kent

Research Interests: Emotion in speech

What was it about the CDT programme that most appealed to you? 

The CDT allows multidisciplinary backgrounds to enrol and gain fundamental foundational skills within the first six months of the programme. The opportunity to work alongside very reputable industry partners and building industrial contacts throughout the PhD. Having an enhanced RTSG budget to fund conference travel or educational needs is a big bonus. The Personal Development Project (PDP), which is alongside the PhD, that has the potential to be very unique and innovative.

What are you enjoying the most about the programme so far?

Having the support of the cohort. As well as working with very knowledgeable and world-leading academics in the fields of NLP and Speech. Using the various facilities and services provided by the Department of Computer Science, to be able to gain fundamental knowledge and ability, which will be essential for my PhD.

Can you describe a typical day?

The programme is quite flexible. Usually when I first arrive at the CDT work-space I check emails and correspondence etc. Then the rest of my day could be made up of a variety of activities including;

If you could give one piece of advice to current students or recent graduates interested in the CDT, what would it be?

Do not be afraid to contact the team if you have any queries or particular research interests you feel may be suited to the CDT.

Friday 7 February 2020 - SLT CDT PhDs

Our CDT manages PhD projects in a slightly different way from a conventional PhD studentship. All of our students undertake an intensive 6 month programme of training covering research skills, core SLT skills, and broader time and project management skills.

During this time, we work with our industrial partners to gather a selection of PhD project ideas which are industrially driven and offer great scope for academic research leading to a PhD. The remaining 3.5 years of their studentship will then be focused on this research project.

PhD Project Proposal Launch Event

This week we internally launched the PhD project proposals to our students and academic supervisors.

We received 32 projects from 12 industry partners in total (and we expect to receive a few more in the coming days). This gives our eight students an exceptional choice of areas to work in.

The projects are drawn from a broad range of SLT topics including; pure audio processing, speech processing, and traditional natural language processing.

The range of applications is just as broad covering; medical, educational, entertainment, competitor analysis and customer engagement domains.

What’s next for our students?

The students are excitedly reviewing all their project options and have a timeline for discussion with supervisors and industry partners to refine projects before final allocations.

PhD projects for cohort 1 will start in April. Watch this space for more info…

Friday 13 December 2019 - Conferences and the CDT

As part of our PhD programme, our students are supported with attending  a variety of conferences that cover the wide range of SLT subjects.

In November one of our students from cohort 1, Will, took a trip down to the Royal Society in London to attend the Validate AI conference

What Will said about the day:

It was a very unique conference to attend. This was because the sole focus of the conference was to try and answer the question of “how do we validate AI?”. There was a lot of discussion around this question and how it applies to particular industries, such as the automotive industry, financial sector and public sector.

Some of the common themes throughout the day included:

Overall this was a really fascinating conference to attend with some really important questions being raised and a lot of people trying to think ahead for what are the challenges of the future in the field of AI. Many of these questions will have an impact on the field of speech and language technology in a profound way, particularly with regards to the tools we use and the way we handle the personal data involved in developing speech and language models.

Wed 6 November 2019 - A huge welcome to Cohort 1

They have arrived!

A big welcome to our first cohort. They arrived on 30 September 2019 and are currently getting settled in. There’s quite a lot to take in over the first few weeks and months.

Who are they? 

We have a cohort of 8 exceptionally strong students joining the CDT this year: Tom, Will, Sebastian, Peter, Claudia, Danae, Hussein and Meg. They come from a diverse range of backgrounds including: forensic speech science, music technology, maths, physics, languages, linguistics, psychology, computer sciences, and engineering disciplines. This wide range is essential to excel within the unique training environment and ambitious research opportunities the CDT offers.

So far…

They have had an exciting induction to get familiar with the campus and each other. The first few months are designed to provide them with a thorough understanding of foundational Speech and Language Technology topics through a combination of bespoke courses as well as existing taught modules.

What’s next? 

From early next year they will be working with the CDT team to refine PhD project ideas with our industrial partners with the aim of starting their PhD research from April 2020.

Friday 27 September 2019- Countdown to our First Induction

The CDT will be welcoming our first students at the Induction events scheduled for next week, starting on the on 30 September 2019. The students will have the opportunity to

More about Cohort 1

We have a cohort of exceptionally strong students joining the CDT this year. They come from a diverse range of backgrounds including maths, physics, languages, linguistics, psychology, computer sciences and engineering disciplines. This wide range is essential to excel within the unique training environment and ambitious research opportunities the CDT offers.

We really look forward to getting to know them and support them through their journey to achieving their PhD with Integrated PGDip.