Prof. Mairead MacSweeney

Prof. MacSweeney is a Wellcome Trust, Senior Research Fellow at University College London.

Research Interests ‎

Prof. MacSweeney’s research examines the impact of altered sensory and language experience on brain development and language processing. In particular, she explores the neural basis of language processing in people who are born profoundly deaf. This allows a unique perspective on how experience shapes the brain.  Her research focusses on sign language, speechreading, and reading of written English.  Advances in this field are not only of theoretical interest, but also have the potential to make  important practical implications for the education of deaf children since the vast majority of deaf children find it very difficult to learn to read.


More information about Dr. MacSweeney including a more extensive publication list can be found here. In addition Dr. MacSweeney is a Co-Director of the ESRC Deafness, Cognition and Language Research Centre

  • Campbell, R., Macsweeney, M., Woll, B. (2014). Cochlear implantation (CI) for prelingual deafness: The relevance of studies of brain organization and the role of first language acquisition in considering outcome success.Frontiers in Human Neuroscience 8(OCT). For full text click here
  • Gutierrez-Sigut, E., Payne, H., MacSweeney, M. (2014). Investigating language lateralization during phonological and semantic fluency tasks using functional transcranial Doppler sonography. Laterality , 1-20. For full text click here
  • Rebecca Lyness, C., Alvarez, I., Sereno, M. I., MacSweeney, M. (2014). Microstructural differences in the thalamus and thalamic radiations in the congenitally deaf. Neuroimage. For full text click here
  • Macsweeney, M., Goswami, U., Neville, H. (2013). The neurobiology of rhyme judgment by deaf and hearing adults: An ERP study. Journal Cognitive Neuroscience 25(7), 1037-1048. Click here
  • Kyle, F. E., Campbell, R., Mohammed, T., Coleman, M., Macsweeney, M. (2013). Speechreading Development in Deaf and Hearing Children: Introducing the Test of Child Speechreading. J Speech Lang Hear Res 56(2), 416-426. Click here