Department of Education

Charles Hulme

Professor of Psychology and Education

College Affiliation: Brasenose College

Charles Hulme is Professor of Psychology and Education in the Department of Education and William Golding Senior Research Fellow at Brasenose College.

He has broad research interests in reading, language and memory processes and their development and is an expert on randomized controlled trials in Education. His work on reading development has made important contributions to understanding the role of phonological skills in learning to read. He has also explored the role of wider language skills (particularly vocabulary knowledge and grammatical skills) as influences on the development of reading comprehension.

In April 2021 it was announced that an Oxford team, led by Charles and Maggie Snowling, has developed the Nuffield Early Language Intervention (NELI) programme which improves oral language skills in young children. As a result of official funding, it is hoped that all primary schools in England that want it, will benefit from the Oxford oral language programme. Last autumn, the Department for Education announced a £9 million investment in the programme, with a further £8 million announced for next academic year. Read more on the University of Oxford’s Arts Blog.

Charles’ publications include a number of assessment materials including the Phonological Abilities Test (1997), the York Assessment of Reading for Comprehension (YARC, 2009) and Sound Linkage (2014) as well as several books dealing with various aspects of reading development. He is the former Editor-in –Chief of the journal ‘Scientific Studies of Reading’ (2007-2009) and a former Senior Editor of the Association of Psychological Science’s flagship journal, Psychological Science (2012-2019).

In 2009 he published “Developmental disorders of language, learning and cognition” (Wiley-Blackwell; co-authored with Maggie Snowling). He holds an honorary doctorate from the University of Oslo (2014) and is a member of Academia Europea and a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences. He received the Feitelson Research Award from the International Reading Association (1998) and the Marion Welchman International Award for Contributions to the study of Dyslexia from the British Dyslexia Association (2016).  He is a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences, a Fellow of Academia Europaea and a Fellow of the British Academy

Charles Hulme would welcome informal contacts from prospective doctoral students interested in the following topics:

  • Developmental dyslexia
  • Reading comprehension impairment
  • The development of arithmetic skills
  • Reading and language intervention
Research interests
  • Developmental cognitive disorders
  • Development of reading, language and arithmetic skills in children
  • Randomized controlled trials in education

Google Scholar Citations

Funded Research Projects:

  • Newbury, D. Snowling, M. & Hulme, C.

  • 2015-2018

    A language and reading intervention programme for Chile, piloted in the Robinson Crusoe population. ESRC. £348,731. ES/N01913X/1

  • Hulme, C., Nash, H., & Halliday, L.

  • 2015-2018

    The role of automatic letter-speech sound integration in reading development and dyslexia. ESRC. £352,000

  • Hulme, C., & Snowling, The Nuffield Early Language Intervention Programme – Primary

  • 2017-2019

    A randomized controlled trial. Education Endowment Foundation. £450K

  • Herman, R., Kyle, F., Roy, P.

  • 2018-2019

    Evaluating a language and reading programme for deaf and hearing children. £100,000 . Nuffield Foundation.

  • Hulme, C., & Snowling, The Nuffield Nursery Language Programme

  • 2019-2021

    Development and Evaluation. £571,825.87 Grant ref EDO/43387. Nuffield Foundation

Doctoral Applications

Charles welcomes doctoral applications from students interested in the following research areas:

  • Developmental dyslexia
  • Reading comprehension impairment
  • The development of arithmetic skills
  • Reading and language intervention


  • Books

    • Hulme, C, Mackenzie, S (2014) Working memory and severe learning difficulties.

    • Hulme, C, Hatcher, PJ, Duff, F (2014) Sound Linkage. Third Edition. Wiley-Blackwell: Chichester, England.

    • Clarke, PJ, Truelove, E, Hulme, C, Snowling, M (2013) Developing reading comprehension. Wiley-Blackwell.

    • Burgoyne, K, Duff, F, Clarke, P, Smith, G, Buckley, S, Hulme, C, Snowling, M, Duff, F (2012) A Reading and Language Intervention for Children with Down Syndrome. Down Syndrome Education International.

    • Carroll, JM, Bowyer-Crane, C, Duff, FJ, Hulme, C, Snowling, MJ (2011) Developing Language and Literacy: Effective Intervention in the Early Years. Oxford, England: Wiley-Blackwell.

    • Hulme, C, Snowling, M (2009) Developmental Disorders of Language Learning and Cognition. Oxford, England: Wiley-Blackwell.

    • Snowling, MJ, Hulme, C (2008) The Science of Reading: A Handbook.

    • Norbury, CF, Tomblin, JB, Bishop, DVM (2008) Understanding developmental language disorders: From theory to practice.

  • Book chapters

    • Snowling, MJ, Hulme, C (2015) “Disorders of reading, mathematical and motor development”, In: Rutter's Child and Adolescent Psychiatry: Sixth Edition. 702-718

    • Hulme, C, Melby-Lervag, M (2015) “Educational interventions for children's learning difficulties”, In: A Thapar, DS Pine, JF Leckman, S Scott, M Snowling, EA Taylor (eds.) Rutter's Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. Sixth. Chichester, England: John Wiley & Sons. 533-544

    • Hulme, C, Duff, F, Snowling, M (2015) “Learning Disorders and Dyslexia”, In: H Friedman (ed.) Encyclopedia of Mental Health. 2nd. Amsterdam, Netherlands: Academic Press. 5-11

    • Brown, GDA, Preece, T, Hulme, C (2014) “Learning to learn in a connectionist network: The development of associative learning”, In: Connectionist Models of Memory and Language. 41-56

    • Snowling, MJ, Hulme, C (2008) “Reading intervention for children with language learning difficulties”, In: Understanding Developmental Language Disorders: From Theory to Practice. 175-188

    • Stuart, GP, Hulme, C (2008) “Lexical and semantic influences on immediate serial recall: A role for redintegration”, In: Interactions Between Short-Term and Long-Term Memory in the Verbal Domain. 157-176

    • Hulme, C, Snowling, M (2008) “Reading and other specific learning difficulties”, In: M Rutter (ed.) Rutter's child and adolescent psychiatry. Oxford, England: Blackwell. 802-819

    • Hulme, C, Snowling, M (2008) “Reading Intervention for Children with Language Learning Difficulties”, In: CF Norbury, JB Tomblin, DVM Bishop (eds.) Understanding Developmental Language Disorders From Theory to Practice. Hove, England: Psychology Press. 175-188

    • Hulme, C, Monaghan, P, Chater, N (2005) “Levels of representation in language development”, In: B Bara, L Barsalou, M Bucciarelli (eds.) Proceedings of the 27th Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum. 1531-1536

    • Hulme, C, Snowling, M (2005) “Learning to read with a language impairment”, In: C Hulme, M Snowling (eds.) The Science of Reading: A Handbook. Oxford, England: Blackwell. 397-412