Research Hub


The Voice Study Centre is a vibrant research hub in which staff and students are research active.

Our Research Hub consists of four Special Interest Groups (SIG). In these groups staff, students and external colleagues meet as one research community discussing recent research, critiquing papers and debate contentious questions.

The Research Hub meets regularly and you are welcome to come to a meeting either as an interested colleague or as a prospective student.

Debbie Winter

Debbie Winter (LLB Hons, MA) is the founder, director, and academic lead of Voice Study Centre.
Specialising in qualitative research methods, Debbie has authored two articles published in peer-reviewed journals and is on the Editorial Board of VSR, published by Routledge. Debbie is currently studying a PhD by concurrent publication specialising in Practice Research.


Special Interest Groups

The Singing for Health and Wellbeing research group aims to foster a sense of a collective movement towards building singing for health literature and to building practice underpinned by evidence and strong theoretical frameworks. It will explore current trends and themes in Singing for Health research along with the limitations and gaps. Researchers, no matter if staff or students, will have opportunities to share their research ideas in a collaborative and supportive group and to identify common areas of interest with other students.


Emily Foulkes, Leader of SIG Singing for Health and Wellbeing


Singing for Health Network –

Voice Pedagogy Online Research Symposium: Singing, Wellbeing and Social Inclusion 2021

The Voice Study Centre and De Montfort University’s Mary Seacole Research Centre hosted this online symposium on Singing, Wellbeing and Social Inclusion on 24 September 2021.

This video shows the symposium in full, and includes the following presentations:

Prof Johann van der Sandt, University of Bozen/Bolzano, Italy – Musical Habits and Wellbeing of adolescent choir singers in Italy, Austria and Finland during Covid-19 Lockdowns

Dr Sanna Salminen, University of Jyväskylä, Finland- Benefits of Singing reflected in the conceptual framework of social inclusion

Celi Barberia, Sing Up Foundation, UK – Sing Up: Children and Young People and the benefits of singing

Emily Foulkes, Singing for Health Network and Voice Study Centre, UK – Singing for Health

Dr Motje Wolf, De Montfort University and Voice Study Centre, UK – The Effect of Covid-19 Lockdowns on Performer Identities of Professional Singers in the UK

This research group investigates aspects of vocal health. This may be in relation to the singing classroom, professional voice users, speech and language therapy, head and neck cancer, manual therapy, looking after the voice and the potential ethical quandary that may arise from working in this field.

The group aims are:

•    to offer a platform for new researchers to participate in a research exchange with other likeminded practitioners

•    to develop research skills, such as summarising your own research

•    to engage in useful discussion relating to research shared by peers

•    to encourage, engage and inspire group members

•    to present work within an informal and supportive setting

Current projects include…

Singing and Allergies

Ethical Considerations for Teaching Singing and Caring for Voices


Kate Cubley, Leader of SIG Vocal Health

Staying In Lane: Exploring The Boundary Line Between Teaching Singing And Therapeutic Practice – December 2021

This open-access symposium explored the ethical codes of teaching singing and engaging in therapeutic practice. It formed the first of a series of symposia examining the tensions between teaching/coaching and therapy. With a focus on vocal health and hearing, this conference evaluated the ethical issues faced regularly by the singing profession.

This special interest group investigates aspects of music performance anxiety (MPA) in both professional singers and singing students.  With a particular interest in Acceptance Commitment Coaching (ACC) and coaching in general it aims to look at improving awareness among teachers and performers and examines some of the latest strategies in development for dealing with MPA.


Teresa Shaw, Head of Research Group


Shaw, T. A., Juncos, D. G., & Winter, D. (2020). Piloting a New Model for Treating Music Performance Anxiety: Training a Singing Teacher to Use Acceptance and Commitment Coaching With a Student. Frontiers in Psychology, 11(Article 882), 1-14. doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2020.00882

Debbie began working on the Postgraduate programme when it was originally conceived with Cardiff Metropolitan University. She worked alongside students to ensure that they could study their field of interest and she has remained committed to the professional practice framework throughout. Practitioner research is challenging because of its multidisciplinary nature and students need to access a range of methodologies. Her PhD focuses on practitioner research and her interest is on practice as research. She is currently working on a series of papers and tutorials that can be accessed through the VASTA and the Voice Study Centre Resources.


Winter, D. (2021) Voicing a Practitioner Research Methodology: Further Framing the Conversation, Voice and Speech Review, 15:1, 76-88, DOI: 10.1080/23268263.2020.1843270

Winter, D. (2020). Understanding Research Methods: From Singing Teacher to Practitioner Researcher. DOI:10.13140/RG.2.2.16046.13122.

Research Repository

Research Repository

Description of Repository…


Get Involved

We are an open and vibrant community of researchers looking to connect to other researchers in voice studies . We are open to collaborations with other researchers and institutions. We particularly enjoy discussing anything vocal from various standpoints, so no matter if you are from ‘the field’ or from adjoining fields – do get in touch.

Ways to get involved:

Email Motje:

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