Dr Gregory Lof: Abstracts


Please read the following information outlining Dr Gregory Lof’s Masterclass, Keynote and Workshop presentations.

Masterclass Presentation:  Updating some “old” techniques used for children with speech sounds disorders


This master class will begin with an overview of the terminology currently used in speech sound disorders as well as the prevalence and social implications of this type of disorder.  Then four topics will be presented that have a long history in the field of speech-language pathology. First, the historical perspective will be addressed and then a different way of thinking about these will be presented.  Discussion after each topic will be encouraged. 

The four topics are:

Topic 1: Speech sound developmental norms: Should they be used for eligibility criteria and treatment target selection?

Topic 2: Phonological processes: are they specific enough to guide treatment? What are some alternatives?

Topic 3: Stimulability: This old idea can be used to help build a phonetic inventory

Topic 4: Speech perception assessment: This can be done in a valid way


Learning objectives

By the end of the master class participants will be able to:

·         Reinterpret speech sound developmental norms

·         Use phonological patterns instead of phonological processes to describe production errors

·         Use stimulability enhancement techniques to increase phonetic inventories

·         Design a speech perception task specific to a child’s production error


·         Knowledge about working with children with speech sound disorders

This master class would be relevant for practitioners working with children who have speech sound disorders, as well as students with academic knowledge of articulation and phonological disorders.


Keynote Presentation: Should we get clinicians to be more like scientists (and scientists more like clinicians)?

In almost all helping professions, there is an obvious gap between what the scientist does and what the clinician does.  But there can also be a divide in what the scientist believes and what the clinician believes, as well as how the scientist approaches a problem and how the clinician approaches a problem. With the push for evidence-based practice, this researcher-clinician separation appears to be widening instead of narrowing.  Perhaps the evidence-based practice model needs to be broadened to become more of a “science-based practice” model, especially when there is often a lack of research evidence to guide practice.  To espouse this model, clinicians need to be able to distinguish science from pseudoscience, to use appropriate levels of skepticism when encountering new treatment approaches, and to use the principles of scientific inquiry so clinicians can gather valid “practice-based evidence.”  There must also be an understanding as to why and how clinicians and scientists think differently before the two can eventually participate together for the best outcomes of clients.

Workshop: Two Hot Topics: Non-Speech Oral Motor Exercises (NSOME) and Childhood Apraxia of Speech (CAS)


Two topics will be addressed during this session. First, the use of Non-Speech Oral Motor Exercises (NSOME) to change speech sound productions continues to be discussed and debated by researchers and clinicians.  In many parts of the world (especially in the USA) a large number of speech-language pathologists use these isolated exercises even though the theory, logic and evidence does not support their use.  This presentation will present the theoretical and practical reasons why NSOME should not be part of the therapy repertoire if the desire is to have children produce articulate speech. The available research evidence will also be summarised.

The second topic will deal with Childhood Apraxia of Speech (CAS).  This often over-diagnosed clinical label is used for children who exhibit severe speech sound production problems.  In 2007, the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association published a technical report that better defines the disorder.  This presentation will take a close look at some of the main points presented in this document, as well as offer some suggestions for assessment techniques and summarise a treatment method called “integral stimulation.”

Learning objectives:

By the end of the workshop participants will be able to:

·         Discuss the controversial use of NSOME

·         Evaluate the research addressing NSOME

·         Interpret the major points made in the 2007 ASHA technical report on Childhood Apraxia of Speech (CAS)

·         Use assessment techniques and implement treatment approaches for CAS  


·         Knowledge about working with children with speech sound disorders

This session will be relevant for practitioners working with children who have speech sound disorders and children suspected with having childhood apraxia of speech.  Students with academic knowledge of articulation and phonological disorders will also find this topic interesting.


Learn more about Speech Pathology Australia's National Conference in May 2016