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Cognitive Communication

Many of our therapists have been taking classes taught by neuroscientists to interface new research with our approach to speech and language therapy. This has proven to be very beneficial as we all work toward helping our clients, Think Language, Think Speech, Think Pragmatics and then Do. This has always been a part of speech pathology training and we continue to follow recent research in science. We have recently posted information on our wall in the clinic. Feel free to copy and take with you. Communication is verbal or non-verbal: listening, speaking, gesturing, reading, writing in all domains of language (phonologic, morphologic, syntactic, semantic and pragmatic). cognition is processes and systems: attention, perception, memory, organization, problem solving, reasoning, judgment, decision making (executive functioning and frontal lobe stuff) The domains of Cognition are: Attention, memory and Executive Functioning (the monitor) Attention deficits are divided into 6 types: selective attention (ignore interfering background information) focused attention: stay with one thing sustained attention: stay with one thing over time divided attention: multi-tasking shifting attention: stop on attention and move to another then come back directed attention:Manage attention, stop and start as needed Processing speed is the primary problem (not processing skills): most process so slowly that they lose the context of what is happening around them or the listening has moved on. "Stage" Model of Memory: Stage 1: Encoding or registration (holding and Acquiring Stage 2: Storage or consolidation Stage 3: Retrieval (calling back information for use) Working Memory: doing all of the above and then holding it and manipulating it in your brain to use it to solve a problem. She is a good speaker and well worth going to a workshop if you get a chance!!

Differential Diagnosis

Is Language so simple that one list or a few tests can allow the making of a definitive plan. NO!! Speech and Language considerations are broad and complex. A speech/language pathologist is trained to use differential diagnosis to find the "best" possible therapy for an individual client at this particular time. We will also continue to educate ourselves to maintain requirements for our licensure and our certification. If you have needs in the areas of articulation, language, memory, sound production, auditory skills, fluency, voice, AAC, non-verbal communication strategies, and social skills--- look for a speech/language pathologist.

AAC Devices

Some interesting changes with AAC devices. Our clinic has been using the proloquo2go, Touch Chat, Sonoflex and many other voice output devices for sometime and many students are very successful with this. One size does not fit all in the area of AAC. If your child is using a system now and it is going well, be careful about changing. Remember the AAC device is the communication system for the client. The communication partner may use it to clarify or demonstrate but ultimately it is the voice of the client. The client learns Why to communicate, as well as, How. It must be a client oriented system or the client will not learn the "Why" of using the AAC. If the client does not understand "Why" to communicate, all other avenues of communication are compromised. More next week. Talk to your speech pathologist about the pros and cons of any AAC device for your child/ student.


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