Home Academia & Research A Community of Scholars and Clinicians: SIG 19, Speech Science

A Community of Scholars and Clinicians: SIG 19, Speech Science

by Amy Neel and Don Finan
colleagues conversing

Joining ASHA’s speech science-focused SIG can broaden your knowledge base and connect you with other like-minded colleagues.

What would you say to encourage other colleagues to join SIG 19?

Joining SIG 19 is a great way to meet other people interested in speech science. Our affiliates include clinicians seeking to use speech-science techniques in their practice, students with interested in learning more about speech production and perception and how to translate research into clinical practice, and professors who teach speech science and/or research in the area of speech science, among others. You can discuss how to teach speech science with fellow instructors, exchange ideas on speech science research with experts in the field, and work with clinicians and academics to apply speech science to assessing and treating communication disorders.

How has your involvement in this SIG improved your understanding of and engagement with the field of speech science?

Knowing that there are clinicians, researchers, students, and instructors in SIG 19 inspires us to make speech science more accessible for students and practitioners working with children and adults who have communication disorders. It can be challenging to incorporate speech science practices in a clinical setting. Involvement in SIG 19 raises our awareness of those challenges, and propels work toward strategies to increase accessibility of speech-science principles and techniques.

What is one hot topic discussed by your SIG that you feel the rest of your profession should know about?

We have had some intense discussions about the differences between science and pseudoscience in SIG 19. Understanding the scientific method and how science contributes to clinical practice is important for everyone in audiology and speech-language pathology. It can be difficult to separate pseudoscience and data that lack scientific evidence from valid scientific findings and applications, making it essential that we use strong critical thinking skills.

What are the specific tangible benefits? The less-tangible benefits?

The online community group discussions have been really useful this year. We’ve benefitted from colleagues’ great ideas about teaching speech science. It feels good to know that there is a community of scholars and clinicians who care about speech science at our fingertips, and we value hearing from both frequent contributors and new members of the SIG 19 community.

What is your favorite recent Perspectives article, and why?

The article “Engineering Innovation in Speech Science: Data and Technologies” by Christine Hagedorn and colleagues stands out, as speech science research will increasingly require collaboration with engineers and computer scientists to enable us to analyze large and complicated data sets. The February special issue, “Putting Research Into Practice” also has lots of good articles for speech scientists looking to make their scholarly work more applicable for clinicians.

Amy T. Neel, PhD, CCC-SLP, is associate professor, department of speech and hearing sciences, University of New Mexico and is the coordinator-elect for SIG 19. atneel@unm.edu.

Don Finan, PhD, is professor, Audiology & Speech-Language Sciences, University of Northern Colorado, the coordinator for SIG 19 and is an affiliate of SIG 3, Voice and Voice Disorders, and SIG 10, Issues in Higher Education. don.finan@unco.edu.

Click here to join SIG 19.

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