Spotlight on: Special Interest Group 5, Speech Science and Orofacial Disorders
When was SIG 5 founded?
SIG 5 was one of the first 11 Special Interest Divisions (as they were named then) established by ASHA in 1988 (divisions became fully operational in 1991.) At first it was called Special Interest Division 5, Speech Anatomy and Physiology and Structurally Based Speech Disorders, then adopted its current name in 1993.
How many affiliates does it have?
In 1991 it had 84 members. As of April 2012, it has 604 members.
Why should ASHA members affiliate with SIG 5?
- Speech science is the foundation for all speech-language pathologists in all areas of expertise-this SIG provides that expertise.
- It is the community for speech scientists to interact with colleagues.
- Knowledge of cleft/craniofacial care demonstrates the relationship of structural deficits of the vocal tract to the functional implications for speech demands, learning principles that can be applied to other areas of speech-language pathology such as phonetics, articulation, phonology, resonance, and airflow control.
- The SIG provides essential information for provision of speech-language services to children with clefts and other craniofacial/maxillofacial differences, across settings.
- SIG 5 Perspectives provides scholarly articles twice yearly on speech science and cleft/craniofacial clinical topics for continuing education (CE) credit.
- Affiliates receive discounts on short courses at the ASHA convention, also for CE credit.
- The SIG 5 online community provides interaction with SLPs with years of experience and expertise in cleft speech characteristics, as well as the latest information on treatment of people with cleft palate or other causes of hypernasal speech.
How does SIG 5 affect the membership at large?
It provides important CE opportunities for SLPs providing services to children with clefts and other structural differences. This education is key for clinicians working with these populations, because coursework on cleft/craniofacial anomalies is not routinely covered in U.S. graduate programs.
The work of SIG 5 helps to move speech science beyond the classroom, integrating it into how we think about our clients and their problems.
Which of your recent Perspectives articles is a must-read for communication sciences and disorders professionals and why?
"Using Acoustic Phonetics in Clinical Practice" (July 2010), by Amy T. Neel, reviews the basics of acoustic phonetics. For example, the article explores how clinicians can use visual displays of acoustic information for speech assessment and biofeedback for speech improvement. You will find this review important to your reference library, whether you are a new or seasoned professional, whether you are treating adults or children, or whether you are treating children with developmental-based speech disorders or children with structural anomalies involving the vocal tract.
Another is "'I Can See What You're Saying:' Clinical Utility of Spectral Moment Analysis" (October 2011) by Kerry Callahan Mandulak. The article explains the marriage of speech science research and its clinical application for quantifying the difference in "s" versus "sh" distortion versus disorder. It also explains the application of spectral moment analysis to the diagnosis of the sibilant productions of children with cleft palate, to help determine how malocclusion-related structural limitations could affect this habituated error versus obligatory speech sound distortion.
Over time, what if we could use a tool of speech science research to chart articulation of "s" and "sh," taking into account the full constellation of interventions (for example, speech-language treatment or orthodontic devices)? This is what we all strive to achieve: clinical application of a research tool that improves our ability to quantify intervention-related changes. Whether a researcher or a clinician, you will likely find something you can relate to in this article.
For more information about ASHA Special Interest Groups and to join, call 800-498-2071 (M–F, 8:30 a.m.–5 p.m. ET) or visit Join a Special Interest Group.