About Special Interest Group 13, Swallowing and Swallowing Disorders (Dysphagia)


The mission of the SIG on Swallowing and Swallowing Disorders is to provide leadership and advocacy for issues in swallowing and swallowing disorders and to serve affiliates who evaluate and manage individuals with swallowing and feeding disorders across the lifespan by supporting professional development, research, education, and communication necessary for delivery of the highest quality services.

Specialty Certification

Becoming a Board Certified Specialist in Swallowing and Swallowing Disorders (BCS-S) is one step closer for interested applicants. Visit the BCS-S website for more information. We hope that you will take advantage of this exciting professional opportunity! For other information on specialty recognition, visit the Clinical Specialty Certification pages on ASHA's website.

Study and Professional Issues

Study Issues

  • Dysphagia assessment
  • Dysphagia treatment
  • Treatment efficacy and risk management
  • Cross-communication with other SIGs in the form of study sections
  • Reimbursement & insurance payments
  • Outcomes of dysphagia treatment: functional, cost, health, quality of life

Professional Issues

  • Clinical certification standards and their relationship to professional training
  • Practice standards/clinical guidelines
  • Interdisciplinary relationships in the health care setting
  • Identification of high priority clinical and research needs
  • Ethical considerations
  • Risk management
  • Improvement of graduate training and expansion continuing education
  • CMS, Medicare, insurance policies

Affiliate Benefits and SIG Programs

Perspectives of the ASHA Special Interest Groups

Perspectives of the ASHA Special Interest Groups is the online peer-reviewed scholarly review journal of the SIGs. SIG 13 offers new self-study CE activities through Perspectives each year.  

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 swallowing and swallowing disorders:

  • SIG 13 has an online community where affiliates can discuss topics related to swallowing and swallowing disorders.
  • SIG 13 hold an annual affiliate meeting at the ASHA Convention.

Representation Within ASHA

  • The SIG 13 Coordinator represents the Dysphagia 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.

Additional Resources

Coordinating Committee Members

  • 2018–2020 Coordinator: Megan M. Urban, Duke University Medical Center
  • 2018–2019 Associate Coordinator: Kelly M. Salmon, Thomas Jefferson University Hospital
  • 2018–2020 Editor: Aneesha Virani, Northside Hospital
  • 2018–2020 Professional Development Manager: R. Jordan Hazelwood, Appalachian State University
  • 2017–2019 Member-At-Large: Julie A. Blair, Medical University of South Carolina
  • 2018–2020 Member-At-Large: Kara R. Fletcher-Larson, Boston Children's Hospital
  • Ex Officio: Gennith M. Johnson, Associate Director, Health Care Services in Speech-Language Pathology, ASHA

Additional SIG Volunteers

2018–2020 Continuing Education (CE) Content Manager: Rinki R Varindani, Presbyterian Village North

Editorial Board

View the Editorial Board Roster for Perspectives of the ASHA Special Interest Groups .

Professional Development Committee

  • R. Jordan Hazelwood, Professional Development Manager
  • Rinki R. Varindani, CE Content Manager
  • Kathleen R. Holterman
  • Ellen M. Nimmons
  • Selena Helms Reece
  • Amber D. Valentine
  • Aneesha Virani, Editor
  • Gennith M. Johnson, Ex Officio

Liaisons to the ASHA Board of Directors

  • Sharon Sandridge, 2019–2021 Vice President for Audiology Practice
  • Marie C. Ireland, 2018–2020 Vice President for Speech-Language Pathology Practice

ASHA Corporate Partners