ASHA Launches Early Detection Campaign
People may fail to seek treatment for speech, language and
hearing issues because they aren't familiar with the early warning signs,
according to a recent ASHA survey, and ASHA's new nationwide multimedia
campaign, "Identify the Signs," aims to reverse that pattern.
Launched last month, the year-long campaign includes
television, radio and print public service announcements—in English and
Spanish—distributed throughout the country. A campaign website highlights the
early warning signs of speech, language and hearing disorders and provides
resources for treatment and help.
In a recent ASHA membership survey, 45 percent of
respondents reported lack of awareness as the chief barrier to early detection
of communication disorders. Research has shown that early detection is critical
to treating—and often reversing—communication disorders. Delayed treatment can
result in social isolation, poor academic or career performance, and delayed
ASHA Members Hit Capitol Hill
ASHA members participated in grassroots advocacy in
record-breaking numbers in 2013: More than 230 members of ASHA boards,
committees, special interest groups, councils and other groups visited members
of Congress or their aides to advocate for the professions.
The members, representing 18 ASHA groups, attended more than
565 face-to-face meetings in Capitol Hill congressional offices. The visits
helped ASHA garner legislation cosponsors, set the groundwork needed for
members of Congress to introduce legislation, and provide information on the
importance of audiology and speech-language pathology services.
The groups included the Audiology and Speech-Language
Pathology Advisory Councils, Board of Directors, Board of SIG Coordinators,
Continuing Education Board, Government Relations and Public Policy Board,
Health Care Economics Committee, National Black Association for
Speech-Language-Hearing, National Student Speech Language Hearing Association
and other students, Political Action Committee Board, School Finance Committee,
and eight special interest groups.
The grassroots advocates discussed several issues, including
repealing the Medicare outpatient therapy cap, legislating comprehensive
Medicare coverage of audiology services, protecting funding for the Individuals
With Disabilities Education Act, and reducing the documentation burden on
audiologists and speech-language pathologists.
If you will be traveling to the D.C. area for business or
pleasure and are interested in participating in a Capitol Hill visit, contact
Caroline Goncalves, ASHA associate director of federal advocacy, at
email@example.com. If you can't get to D.C. and still want to make your voice
heard, write to your congressional representative through the ASHA Take Action website or request a meeting in the lawmaker's
home office during a congressional recess.
Faculty, Students Win Research Awards
Six faculty members have received the 2013 Advancing
Academic Research Careers award and 10 students have received the 2013 Students
Preparing for Academic Research Careers award. Now in their 10th year, these
ASHA award programs are designed to help reduce the shortage of PhD-level
faculty in communication sciences and disorders.
Advancing Academic Research Careers
AARC awards are designed to help encourage junior-level CSD
faculty to remain in higher education. Each winner receives $5,000 to support
mentored activities that may include, for example, enhancing teaching skills,
conducting research, writing grant applications, publishing research, and
presenting at professional meetings. Two of the awards were specifically
designated for clinical practice research.
The 2013 AARC winners are Sue Grogan-Johnson, Kent State
University; Sunjung Kim, University of Central Arkansas; Erin Picou, Vanderbilt
University; Jessica Richardson, University of South Carolina; Karla Washington,
University of Cincinnati; and Krystal Werfel, University of South Carolina.
Students Preparing for Academic Research Careers
SPARC is designed to foster students' interest in pursuing a
PhD and career in academia. Each winner receives $1,000 to support a mentored
relationship for teaching and research-related activities, which may include
travel to scientific and professional meetings. For details on the recipient's
planned teaching activities and research interests, visit the SPARC website.
The 2013 recipients, all master's students (unless otherwise
noted), are Kenia De Los Santos, Iona College (undergraduate); Michelle
Erskine, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Laura Friedman, University of
Maryland-College Park (undergraduate); Diondra Maestas, University of New
Mexico (undergraduate); Cornetta Mosley, University of Washington (AuD); Callie
Muri, University of Texas-Dallas; Jillian Nyswonger, East Carolina University;
Jamie Ragsdale, University of New Mexico (undergraduate); Caitlin Ryan,
University of Wisconsin-Madison; and Kristin VanWyngaarden, University of
For more information, visit the ASHA Awards Programs page.
Did You Know?
You can find a complete calendar of upcoming events on the
Calendar page of ASHA's website.
You can receive up-to-date information on a variety of
topics by subscribing to the growing list of e-mail newsletters.
EdFind lists information on more than 300 institutions
offering degree programs in audiology, speech-language pathology, and speech,
language and hearing science.
Audiologists can download patient education handouts on more
than 30 topics—many in Spanish as well as in English.
Lessons for Success Focuses on Grant Writing Skills
Interested in learning how to compete successfully for
federal research funds? Apply by Jan. 13, 2014, for ASHA's 12th annual Lessons
for Success program, which will take place April 28–30, 2014, at the national
office in Rockville, Md.
Lessons for Success is designed for early-career
researchers, post-doctoral fellows and PhD students conducting basic,
translational or applied research who have previously submitted a proposal for
(but not necessarily received) extramural research funding.
During the three-day program, mentors provide training on grant
writing and the professional competencies needed to succeed in a research
career. The program is supported by a grant from the National Institute on
Deafness and Other Communication Disorders.
In their evaluations, participants in the 2013 program expressed
enthusiasm about and appreciation for the experience. "I cannot stress enough
how much my grantsmanship has improved since attending this workshop," one
Another offered, "I liked the opportunity to read other
grants and evaluate them. I thought that was helpful in developing my own grant
writing skills ... and in understanding how my grant will be viewed by review
Online Tool Brings Researchers and Clinicians Together to
Researcher Cynthia Thompson of Northwestern University is
heading a five-year project—funded with a $12 million NIH grant—to study
language recovery in people with aphasia. The study will collect data from patients
at three project sites and from other patients throughout the country.
To enroll patients outside of the sites in Chicago, Boston
and Baltimore, Thompson and her colleagues are turning to CLARC (Clinicians and
Researchers Collaborating), ASHA's new online tool that matches clinicians and
researchers interested in forming research collaborations.
Any clinician or researcher who is an ASHA member may
participate in CLARC. Enrolling online as a researcher or clinician—or both, if
appropriate—takes just a few minutes. Once
enrolled, participants can search the database for "matches" and contact these
potential collaborators to discuss the nature and purpose of the collaboration.
Thompson's Center for the Neurobiology of Language Recovery
will use different imaging methods to identify, monitor and evaluate
brain-behavior changes within and across language domains in people with
aphasia. Researchers will gather behavioral and neuroimaging data to examine
the effects of treatment for selective language impairments in aphasia,
investigate the course of language recovery and associated adaptive
neuroplasticity, and identify cognitive and neural variables predictive of
language and brain recovery.
Through CLARC, Thompson and her colleagues will identify
clinicians who are interested in working with the study. The clinicians will
deliver the state-of-the-art clinical protocols to their patients, and report
data to the Center for the Neurobiology of Language Recovery.
Research collaborations are needed, Thompson says, to
improve and inform the evidence base in communication sciences and disorders.
"This collaboration has potential to improve access to state-of-the-art
treatment for people with aphasia," she says, "as well as to provide
opportunities for clinicians interested in research and to generate a large
network of professionals working together to make advancements in our
understanding of the effects of treatment for aphasia."
Clinicians and researchers interested in this type of
collaboration are encouraged to enroll in CLARC. To enroll and for more
information, including frequently asked questions, visit the ASHA Community CLARC page.
New Web Pages for State Telepractice and Ethics Regulations
Clinicians looking for information about specific
regulations on telepractice and codes of ethics can find it in a state-by-state
listing on ASHA's website.
The telepractice pages
include any available state-specific information on licensing requirements,
definitions, supervision, delivery models, quality of service and other issues.
The ethics pages provide links
to states' codes, statutes and regulations related to ethics and grounds for
ASHA's state advocacy page
also has links to state-by-state information on early hearing detection and
intervention, school-age hearing screening, and insurance mandates for coverage
of hearing aids and for services for autism spectrum disorder.
CSD Education Survey Closes Dec. 13
ASHA encourages the more than 300 academic institutions
offering undergraduate through doctoral programs in communication sciences and
disorders to complete and submit the 2013 Communication Sciences and Disorders
Education Survey. The deadline is Dec. 13.
Academic programs' completion and submission of the survey
is critical to produce robust national and individual state reports, which are
the authoritative source for data on CSD education. Program data is also included
in EdFIND, ASHA's online searchable database. Prospective students use
EdFIND—one of the most visited pages on the ASHA website and the top-viewed
page on mobile devices—to look for and learn about CSD programs.
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.
Membership Survey Reminder: Inform Us About You
Did you receive ASHA's 2013 membership survey in your mail?
Last month, a sample of ASHA member audiologists and
speech-language pathologists received the biennial survey, designed to gather
information about professional issues, including ASHA services and programs,
ethics education, cultural and linguistic diversity, telepractice, and the
If you received a survey, please take the time to respond by
mid-November. Your answers provide key information to the membership,
professions and discipline. The survey results will be available in spring
For more information, contact Jeanette Janota, senior
research associate and statistician, at email@example.com.
See what ASHA's Board of Directors voted on recently [PDF].
Are you on ASHAsphere?
Here are some of the recent posts:
After 23 years working in schools, SLP Tracy Sippl found
herself "looking for a different avenue for delivering speech-language
pathology services. Simply, I was ready for a change." She discovered
telepractice—not as a private practitioner, but as an employee of a company
that contracts with school systems. She offers guidance for taking this step,
concluding "students are able to accomplish more in less time compared with
face-to-face therapy. Teletherapy has its own rewards, and students find ways
to show you how important you are to them. Once, as I was working with a
kindergarten student, she looked at me and exclaimed, 'Hi, Mrs. Sippl! I'm so
excited to see you today! I love you!'"
Maria Del Duca firmly believes in the importance of play,
but the early intervention specialist contends that many parents don't know how
to play with their children. "We need to teach parents how to play so their
children can continue to develop during the time we are not present as service
providers and throughout their childhood," she says. She offers pointers for
getting parents to buy in to the concept, and also gives tips for parents who
ask about the "right" way to play.
Fluency expert Craig Coleman weighs in on the "wait and see"
approach for a child with early stuttering. For a child with normal
disfluencies, this approach is much more acceptable than for a child with early
stuttering, he says. But how do you tell the difference? Coleman offers a chart
that describes some characteristics of "normal disfluency" and "stuttering," as
well as other risk factors for clinician assessment.
2013 Awards of Excellence
ASHA is proud to present the recipients of the association's 2013 Awards of Excellence [PDF]. These outstanding individuals have made significant contributions to speech-language pathology, audiology, and speech, language, and hearing sciences. Their work has drawn well-deserved accolades from their colleagues, students and clients.