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About Special Interest Group 14, Cultural and Linguistic Diversity

Vision Statement

To be a leading resource for (a) advancing knowledge regarding the importance of cultural and linguistic diversity and its influence on human communication and (b) the infusion of this knowledge into research, education, and clinical practice.

Mission and Study Areas

Mission: The mission of the SIG on Cultural and Linguistic Diversity (SIG 14) is to provide leadership and advocacy for best practices relating to culturally and linguistically appropriate audiology and speech-language pathology services. SIG 14 seeks to promote research and to provide networking, collaboration, education, and mentoring opportunities for its affiliates, students, and related professionals.

Study Areas: Bilingualism; multilingualism; English language learning; procedures for least biased/alternative assessment and intervention; sociocultural factors that may affect the cultural and linguistic appropriateness of speech-language pathology and audiology services; etiologies of specific speech, language, and hearing disorders that have a greater or differing impact between individuals and across groups; professional and public policies


  1. To promote clinical and continuing education in the area of communication disorders and sciences relative to cultural and linguistic diversity;
  2. To promote research in the areas of normal communication and communication sciences and disorders relative to cultural and linguistic diversity;
  3. To promote the development and application of best practices for audiologists and speech-language pathologists and the culturally and linguistically diverse populations they serve;
  4. To serve as an advocate regarding cultural and linguistic diversity in the areas of prevention, identification, treatment, and education;
  5. To provide audiologists, speech-language pathologists, and students with support, including networking and mentoring opportunities, in scientific and clinical endeavors relating to cultural and linguistic diversity;
  6. To increase participation of diverse professionals and those interested in topics related to the intersection of communication and cultural and linguistic diversity;
  7. To facilitate communication with other SIGs and encourage the study of cultural and linguistic diversity as it relates to their areas of professional interest;
  8. To serve as a resource for the Association and its committees and boards on matters relating to cultural and linguistic diversity;
  9. To facilitate the exchange of information among professionals who are working with, interested in, or representative of populations concerned with cultural and linguistic diversity.

Affiliate Benefits and SIG Programs

Perspectives on Cultural and Linguistic Diversity

Perspectives on Cultural and Linguistic Diversity is the SIG's online publication. Perspectives is published three times annually, in March, July, and October. SIG 14's Perspectives issues are offered for self-study to earn CEUs. Perspectives on Cultural and Linguistic Diversity features:

  • News of SIG activities
  • The latest on research and clinical topics
  • Coverage of current professional, practice, and legislative and regulatory issues

Online Chats

SIGs sponsor live online chats. These events feature topic experts who answer questions from the audience. All ASHA and NSSLHA members may attend. Live online chats are not eligible for CEUs. Archived chats can be accessed online.

Continuing Education

  • The SIG sponsors a Short Course and a seminar at the annual ASHA Convention.
  • Perspectives contains continuing education articles. Readers may earn ASHA continuing education credit by completing self-study questions related to those articles. SIG affiliates may complete the self-study for a $5 processing fee.
  • Short Course: SIG affiliates are eligible for a 50% discount on select Short Courses at the ASHA Convention.


SIG affiliates have the opportunity to identify others with interest in communication disorders and sciences in culturally and linguistically diverse populations:

  • SIG 14 has an online community where affiliates can discuss topics related to communication disorders and sciences in culturally and linguistically diverse populations.
  • SIG 14 hold an annual affiliate meeting at the ASHA Convention.

Representation Within ASHA

  • The SIG 14 Coordinator represents the Special Interest Group within the ASHA Board of Special Interest Group Coordinators.
  • The Coordinating Committee responds to ASHA requests for input regarding policy, guidelines, committees, and other issues.
  • Affiliates have the opportunity to provide input to the SIG leadership and ASHA.

Coordinating Committee


Coordinator: Maria Munoz, Texas Christian University
Associate Coordinator: Melissa White, Bilingual Therapies 
Perspectives Editor: Nidhi Mahendra, California State University–East Bay
Professional Development Manager: Danai Fannin, Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior, University of California–Los Angeles
Twhanna J. Green, Calvert County, Maryland Public Schools
Mahchid Namazi, Kean University
Ex Officio: Claudia Saad, Director, Multicultural Education, ASHA

Additional SIG Volunteers

Editorial Review Board

Staff Liaison for Communications

Victoria Davis, Production Editor, ASHA

Board Liaisons

Donna Fisher Smiley, Vice President for Audiology Practice
Sandra Laing Gillam, Vice President for Speech-Language Pathology Practice

ASHA Corporate Partners