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Updated on: November, 2012
“The iPad is more than a device; it is a game changer not only for speech therapists but also for parents, educators and most importantly for children.” Fernandes, 2011
Using Evidence Based Practice to guide the use of apps for Articulation
With the release of touch devices by Apple, inc and the development of several applications that target speech and sound disorders, speech therapists have the opportunity to deliver engaging therapy sessions. The feedback heard from speech therapists on how these devices have signiﬁcantly improved the quality and efﬁciency of their services does not directly translate into the awareness of how these applications are not only a fun therapy tool that will maintain the student’s attention and interest for longer periods of time, but are also the result of the integration between evidence based research and one of the most advanced pieces of technology of the century. With over 14 applications for articulation on the app store, speech and language pathologists have the opportunity to deliver more entertaining articulation sessions that provide automatic feedback to us as clinicians as well as to the student. Articulation applications range from basic memory games to more complex apps that were designed to analyze and determine patterns in speech errors.
Barbara Fernandes, M.S; CCC-‐SLP is a practicing trilingual speech All rights reserved to Geek SLP and language pathologist in the Dallas area. Barbara is the founder and CEO of Smarty Ears and has created over 45 applications for speech therapists. Barbara Fernandes is also the person behind GeekSLP.com a FREE blog, app and video podcast teaching SLPs how to implement technology into their practices.
For Speech Therapy
Sunny Articulation Phonology Test
The Sunny Ar/cula/on Phonology Test (SAPT) is an individually administered qualita/ve clinical tool for screening, iden/ﬁca/on, diagnosis and follow-‐up evalua/on of ar/cula/on skills in English speaking individuals. The Sunny Ar/cula/on Phonology Test can be used with individuals of all age groups. The Sunny Ar/cula/on Phonology Test is compa/ble with the iPhone, iPod Touch & the iPad.
This is not a test for determining eligibility- it is not standardized. This is a test used
for identifying patterns of speech errors.
The Sunny Ar+cula+on Test can be used to: -‐ Collect informa/on regarding an individual’s ar/cula/on skills; -‐ Supplement data of a standardized ar/cula/on measure; -‐ Determine the presence of an ar/cula/on disorder; -‐ Measure treatment eﬃcacy; -‐ Determine a follow up therapy plan; -‐ Quick administra/on of ar/cula/on screening; -‐ Screens ar/cula/on skills to determine needs for further assessment.
Features of the Sunny Articulation Phonology Test:
a. Ability to enter student’s name and track progress over /me; b. Tests all phonemes of the English language including clusters; c. Oﬀers two op/ons: Screening & Full Assessment d.Ability to record student’s produc/on with the same tool you are using to administer test; e.Complements informa/on of standardized measures; f. E-‐mail test results immediately aLer administra/on;
by: i. Manner ii.Phoneme
Features v. Error
It provides immediate posi/ve feedback to
students throughout the test administra/on; Sample recording of target word is available as you touch each image; Compa/ble with the iPod Touch, iPhone & iPad; Ability to add notes on the app during the assessment.
Understanding the Sunny Articulation Phonology Test:
Transcribed word on top of the screen Note Taking capabilities
Sunny is an universal application which makes it fully compatible with the iPhone, iPod touch and the iPad.
How to enter the data on the Sunny Articulation Phonology Test:
1. As soon as you hear that the student is making an error on a specific sound; click on the green transcribed phoneme. A new window will pop-up and ask you to select one of the options: a. Deleted b. Substituted c. Distorted d. A specific phonological process
Simply select the error accordingly and go to the next image.
Automatic analyses of speech errors is a dream come true to speech pathologists. The Sunny Articulation Phonology Test provides a detailed analyses of the child’s speech abilities that can be e-mailed or printed right after the assessment containing information in six categories: 1. Position in the word; 2. Manner of Articulation 3. Voicing Features 4. Errors within specific words 5. Place of articulation 6. Types of Errors/ Phonological processes 7. Overall intelligibility
The Results (continuation):
This is a view of the results screen for manner of articulation. On the example provided the student is 60% accurate when producing liquid sounds. When you look closely you notice that majority of the errors were on the final position of the /r/ phoneme; therefore the problem in this case is not the fact that the sounds are liquids, but specifically final /r/.
Note the list of the transcribed words targeted. The phonemes in green are phonemes produced accurately; the phonemes in red were missed. The error/phonological process is presented next to the word.
The Voicing tab allows therapists to identify if articulation difficulties are related to voicing features of the phonemes.
The error type tab allows clinicians to identify the types of errors demonstrated by client.
The EVIDENCE: “Phonetic placement has been shown to be effective for teaching a child (Powel, Elbert, Miccio, Strike-Roussos, & Brasseur, 1998). how to say a new sound.”
This is a 3D demonstration of all sounds in the English language.Speech Trainer 3D is a tool designed to help individuals to practice every sound in the English language, including vowels and consonants. With detailed 3D animations that demonstrate the correct positioning of the tongue, lips, and mouth, it is a great model for children and adults who wish to work on learning to pronounce the English sounds correctly. This is a great visual tool for individuals who have suffered a stroke and are relearning speech, children with speech delays, or even as a tool for learning English as a second language. Speech Trainer 3D demonstrates the sounds in two views: Front and Side View. Speech Trainer uses the International Phonetics Alphabet, which is the best way to represent each sound. Speech Coach has 32 sounds represented; 23 consonants and 7 vowels. With this application speech pathologists can help students visualize manner and placement for all sounds in English.
Using the camera on the iPad 2 to provide feedback:
Speech Trainer uses the iPad 2 front camera as a video mirror to provide student’s an opportunity to visualize themselves while producing each sound.
“Correct placement is essential to progress.”
Bauman-Waengler (2004); Secord (2007)
Articulate it! allows Speech Therapists to set specific goals for each student.
Articulate it! and the Evidence:
We know what works...
Articulate it! is an application designed to help children practice their pronunciation s k i l l s . Articulate it! provides over 1 thousand target words, with associated images and audio modeling organized into three main categories: Phonemes, Phonological Processes, and Mode of Articulation.
Home practice has always been a challenge for speech therapists that usually have to find time on their already limited agenda to set up homework, and lists of words to send for home practice. ASHA, 2004 demonstrated that home practice leads to significantly faster progress and generalization. Articulate it! not only provides an immediate list of words for practice that can be sent home to facilitate generalization, but with the app store parents also have access to tools for at home practice which can
be shared on a daily basis with SLPs for monitoring prog ress and generalization. While applications provide a more practical and contextualized therapy session it also has its pitfalls: the need for ongoing research as new technology is developed and the temptation of the SLP to forget that they are still the therapist. Innovation in any field will first face the lack of research. They are almost in opposite sides of the spectr um. However, as more therapists use it, keep data, and explore its potential, we will soon be able to demonstrate the evidence of the therapy tool of the new millennium.
Mass practice is essential to progress (Skelton, 2004). With over 1 thousand target words in very portable and organized placed, speech pathologists can provide drill therapy and mass practice to students, while keeping data and engaging the student. 2.According to Ertmer & Ertmer, 1998, Cognitive monitoring of speech production is essential to progress.
TIP: Articulate it! also allows for
Articulate it! provides two ways to guide students to monitor their productions: Students are able to check correct or incorrect for each time they produced the words which allows them actively monitor their production. Students are also able to record their own voice during practice and play it back for immediate feedback. It is also possible to compare their own productions to the production of an adult speaker built in the application as they touch the image. 3.It does appear that the decision to work on patterns of speech errors is more efﬁcient and effective than teaching sounds one at a time (Almost & Rosenbaum, 1998; Bernhardt & Major, 2005; Hodson & Paden, 1983, Major & Bernhardt, 1998; Pamplona, Ysunza, & Espinoza, 1999) Articulate it! is the only application that allows Speech Therapists to group sounds by Manner of Articulation. We have also the selected words based on specific phonological processes: such as devoicing, weak syllable deletion, etc..
individual goal selection, and individual target’s in a group setting; therefore when trying to build cognitive monitoring, clinicians can also facilitate that group members monitor each other’s productions.
Over 1 thousand pictures and target words;
Note taking capability: allows SLPs and parents to take notes during practice.
Ability to track multiple students at the same time with separate goals;
Articulate it! contains over 1 thousand images in all sounds of the English language! Let's take a closer look at the main features of Articulate it:
Audio recordings for every word present on this app! You child can practice saying their sounds on their own by repeating the voice on the app;
Ability to group sounds by Manner of articulation or phonological processes;
Extremely speciﬁc results screens- give you percentage based on phonemes/ position in the words/ which words were missed and more...
Contains ALL consonants in the English language;
Built in voice
recording allows the children to compare their productions with the audio recording;
Note taking capability: allows SLPs and parents to take notes during practice.
Record the voice of your student as you practice:
Target word/phrase and image
List of students on the session
Using Articulate it to implement data driven therapy and establish
Speech and Language Pathologists are able to access a very detailed result summary after each session. Articulate it! analyses the data, and saves all the sessions and all the voice recordings from the sessions. Speech Therapists are able to e-mail the data immediately after the therapy session. This data can be used to demonstrate progress, and share with parents. One very handy feature on Articulate it! is “ Words to Work on” section, which were collected based on each session. These words can be transformed into a immediate home work list. If more than one student was present on the session, each student will have their own results summary. This data will be saved on the device until the therapist chooses to delete it. This is the end of paper and pencil tallying!
1.E-mail results : Keep a back up of your data. You never know when something could happen to your iPad or iPhone; 2. Review words after the session; 3. Send home the list of words practiced as home work to optimize practice;
Articulate it! allows you to e-mail the results instantly though email. If you have recommended this application to parents; you can ask them to share the results of every practice with you. This way you can monitor carry over of targeted skills.
Articulation Scenes comes with 72 stunning built-in scenes and over 1200 practice words. Each scene contains 4 separate activities: 1.Find the hidden items: Allows children the opportunities to listen to targeted words and find them on each scene. 2.Tap and say it: Children tap on the items on the scene, which are isolated allowing the therapist to track and monitor their productions. 3.The movie theater: Children get the opportunity to listen to a story using the target words. 4.The production room: This is the activity that allows children to either create their own stories, record them and continue to practice.
Articulation Scenes includes features that are not generally found in any other articulation apps, which make it very unique. The ability to target the phonemes at the word level is a given on any scene, the app includes models for word level practice. Production can easily be prompted at the phrase and sentence level by addressing target phonemes in the context they appear. The production room also provides a story level sample story for each scene. The students have two options to practice correct pronunciation and also narrative skills.
Comparing Articulation Therapy Apps:
When choosing an app for your articulation therapy, many times speech therapists feel tempted to search for the app with the most features. It is important to compare the features, and analyze them to understand which features are important to you as a clinician. Many speech therapists do not need an application that will provide group therapy features such as Articulate it, and will be fine with an app that only allows for individual therapy. I have provided a table that compares two articulation applications developed by Smarty Ears to serve as a starting pointing when shopping for your articulation application on the app store. Sometimes, you will see that just as you probably have more than one deck of cards, you will also want to purchase more than one articulation application.
Total number of images: 1600
Levels of practice:
word & sentence
word, conversation, narrative, reading.
All age groups
Number of activities:
Phoneme selection mode:
phoneme, manner of articulation & phonological processes
phoneme, position in the word
Built in voice recorder?
“The flexibility of the menu was what seemed to grab public school therapists interest the most, particularly the ability to work with multiple students. "You mean I can have one student working on phonological process while the other is working on a specific sound?" said one therapist in disbelief as she watched the app automatically take turns between the two students for whom she had selected different goals. "How many students can I work with at once?" she immediately asked energetically imagining its practicality in her classroom. Articulate it! in it’s current version allows up to four students with specific goals for each student including one or more phonemes, one or more types of speech errors or one or more mode of articulation.”
Source: New iPad™ Apps for Speech Therapy and Communication were a Highlight of ASHA 2010 Convention
R Intensive SLP was developed as a result of “intensive” requests made by our Speech Therapists. Smarty Ears is aware of the high incidence of students seen for their difficulties with /r/. This phoneme is one of the hardest phonemes for children to master. The speech-language pathologist in conjunction with the parents can use this application for helping the child practice correct pronunciation of the various types of /r/. This application can give children the motivation they need to continue practice and eventual mastery of this phoneme.
R Intensive contains 3 exciting activities: 1.Flashcards: Allows practice of the r at the word, phrase, and sentence levels. Multiplayer mode supports 1-4 players with individual targets for each student. 2.Matching game: 4×5 rows of cards (20 card decks) make working on your favorite type of R a skill of memory and articulation. Supports 1-4 players per game. 3.Guess What game: students will have fun guessing which R word is described, while at the same time practicing their articulation. If the description clue is ever too difficult simply tap on the hidden image to reveal the answer. Supports 1-4 players.
Other little things that make this app great:
a.Store, review, and email “report cards” from sessions. b.Print report cards directly from the app (when using an air ready printer) c.Student report cards feature easy to read graphs for the “flash card” activity that make analyzing results and progress simple and clear. d.Import a student photo, or choose from one of 50 quality avatars to represent the player. e.Quick play feature allows those unconcerned with student profiles or data tracking a quick way to start a session. f.Multiplayer capability-All three activities (flashcards, matching, and guess what) can support up to four players. g.Easy to use, intuitive user interface h.Build in video tutorial
None of the apps on this document require WI-FI connection. Once you download them to your device you will not need to be connected to the internet to use them in therapy.
I am a bilingual speech pathologist, and for those of you who work with Spanish-speaking children you know how frustrating it can be trying to get ready for therapy. Most of the time we are limited to two options: live translation of English materials or spending hours creating our own Spanish materials. The limited resources in Spanish pushes us to creating our own materials on a daily basis. This can be very difﬁcult for us with an already very limited time on our hands to serve so many children. That’s why I created Smarty SpanishArtik!
This app allows therapists and parents to work on speciﬁc sounds. It works like ﬂashcards. It contains over 500 ﬂashcards in it separated by speciﬁc phonemes, mode of articulation, and phonological processes. This is a very useful app not only for bilingual therapists, but also for English-speaking clinicians who should work on speech errors in both languages when treating children with articulation delays.
Results are tracked overtime and can be printed or emailed.
Smarty Speech-Spanish is an universal application which makes it fully compatible with the iPhone, iPod touch and the iPad.
These results can be shared between therapist and parents.
Match2Say is the matching game. While children play they say the words and improve their articulation skills at the same time.
1. Each deck of cards represents a speciﬁc sound; 2. Contains all different types of “r” sounds;
3. Audio recording for all images with different voice characters; 4. Several difﬁculty levels; 5. Over 1500 images in the whole app; 6. Contains a set for /s/ and /r/ clusters; 7. Universal app: Fully compatible with the iPhone, iPod Touch and the iPad.
What are people saying about Match2Say:
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