Emily Zimmerman

Assistant Professor
  • Department of Speech Language Pathology and Audiology

Office: 228C Forsyth
Phone: 617-373-5140
Email: e.zimmerman@neu.edu


BA:  University of Kansas

MA:  University of Kansas

PhD: University of Kansas

Postdoctoral Fellowship: Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School





Suck, Swallow, Respiration & Speech in Premature and Full Term Infants

  • Sensorimotor control of suck, swallow, respiration & speech
  • Creating early speech-language assessments that can be implemented soon after birth
  •  Creating therapeutic multisensory stimulation paradigms that can improve short term (respiration, sucking, swallowing, feeding) and long term (speech, language, cognition)outcomes


Research Focus: Dr. Zimmerman directs the Speech & Neurodevelopment Lab (SNL). The main goal of the SNL is to create assessments and therapeutic interventions that enhance suck, swallow, respiration, and neurodevelopmental outcomes. Of particular interest are multisensory interventions that improve oral feeding in preterm infants.


Professor Zimmerman teaches courses in Language Development and Anatomy and Physiology of the Vocal Mechanism.


Zimmerman, E., Keunen, K., Norton, M., Lahav, A. (2013). Weight Gain Velocity in Very Low-Birth-Weight Infants: Effects of Exposure to Biological Maternal Sounds. American J. Perinatology, [Epub ahead of print].

Zimmerman E, McMahon E, Doheny L, Levine P, Lahav A. (2013). Transmission of biological maternal sounds does not interfere with routine NICU care: assessment of dose variability in very low birth weight infants. J Pediatr Neonat Individual Med. 1(1), 73-80.

Zimmerman, E., & Lahav, A. (2013). Ototoxicity in preterm infants: effects of genetics, aminoglycosides, and loud environmental noise. J Perinatol. 33(1):3-8

Barlow, S.M., Urish, M., Venkatesan, L., Harold, M., Zimmerman, E. (2012). Frequency Modulation (FM) and Spatiotemporal Stability of the sCPG in Preterm Infants with RDS. International J Pediatrics, [Epub ahead of print].

Zimmerman, E., Barlow, S.M. (2011). The Effects of Vestibular Stimulation Rate and Magnitude of Acceleration on Central Pattern Generation for Chest Wall Kinematics in Preterm Infants. J Perinatology, 32(8):614-20.

Poore, M., Zimmerman, E., Barlow, S.M., Wang, J., Gu, F.  (2008).  NTrainer therapy increases suck spatiotemporal stability in preterm infants. Acta Paediatrica, 97(7), 920-927.

Zimmerman, E., Barlow, S.M. (2008).  Pacifier stiffness alters the dynamics of the suck central pattern generator.  J Neonatal Nursing, 14(3):79-86. * Editor’s Choice Award