CSU PhD for Vietnamese researcher studying children’s speech


Friday 14 Dec 2018

* PhD research provides insight into Vietnamese children’s speech acquisition

* Scholar was first person from Vietnam to receive Australian Awards scholarship to study education / speech pathology in Australia

A scholar from Vietnam graduates from Charles Sturt University (CSU) in Bathurst today with a PhD in speech and language acquisition.

Dr Ben Phạm (pictured) received her PhD for her thesis titled ‘Children’s acquisition of consonants, semivowels, vowels, and tones in Northern Viet Nam’.

Dr Phạm and her family moved from Hanoi in Vietnam to Bathurst to begin her PhD at CSU in July 2014.

She received a prestigious Australia Awards scholarship from the Australian government to undertake her studies, and was the first person from Vietnam to be awarded this scholarship to study in the field of education / speech pathology.

Prior to coming to CSU Dr Phạm was a lecturer in the Faculty of Special Education at the Hanoi National University of Education and head of the Division of Speech and Hearing Impairment.

Dr Phạm’s PhD supervisors were CSU’s Professor Sharynne McLeod, Professor Linda Harrison, and Associate Professor Jane McCormack.

“It is wonderful that Dr Phạm has achieved her goal of the award of the PhD as the culmination of her hard work and dedication,” said Professor McLeod (pictured below with Dr Phạm).

“She has published journal articles and an encyclopedia entry from her PhD, and these already have influenced research and professional practice in Australia, Vietnam, the US and other parts of the world.

“I am very proud to have been her supervisor, and I wish her all the best for her future research and teaching career in education and speech pathology.”

Dr Phạm said, “Studying for my PhD at Charles Sturt University was such a wonderful journey for me.

“I have worked with the best ever supervisors, especially my principal supervisor Professor Sharynne McLeod. I had availed myself of every opportunity to learn during my PhD candidature, and that has inspired me and afforded me knowledge and skills to enhance my work with children.

“I very much appreciate my PhD candidature at Charles Sturt University as it has provided opportunities for my research on Vietnamese-speaking children’s speech to reach beyond the border of Vietnam.  I have been able to publish papers in international journals and my work has been presented at conferences in Australia, Japan, Canada and USA. I now look forward to applying this new knowledge in Vietnam.”

Dr Phạm is a consultant on the ‘VietSpeech’ research project group at CSU. The project is funded by the Australian Research Council.


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Media contact: Bruce Andrews, 0418 669 362

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Dr Ben Phạm received her PhD for her thesis titled ‘Children’s acquisition of consonants, semivowels, vowels, and tones in Northern Viet Nam’ at the 2pm graduation ceremony at CSU in Bathurst on Thursday 13 December.