Speech Language Pathology (University of Kansas)
Background: As a research officer on a project investigating discourse comprehension in individuals with aphasia, I worked intensively with individuals with aphasia and became interested in exploring technological rehabilitation options when traditional speech-language therapy methods reached a plateau. I entered my doctoral program after working for about 18 months to research novel technological options like AAC devices and brain computer interfaces for aphasia rehabilitation.
Current Interests: The current focus of my doctoral studies is to find a neural potential associated with speech intention with the long-term goal of using this neural potential as an input signal for a brain-computer interface to access an AAC device for individuals with aphasia. Finding a neural potential associated with speech intention can help in figuring out the level of deficit in naming an object in individuals with aphasia. If the deficit is at speech motor planning level in a speech production model, then this neural potential could be used as an input signal for a brain computer interface that can detect and translate this potential to command a speech generating device to say the word for the user.
Dissertation Chair: Dr. Jonathan Brumberg
Sample Presentation/Publication and Rationale: I presented ‘Can CNVs indicate intent of speech?’ at the ASHA (2018) conference. This was an initial study to identify the electroencephalography(EEG) protocol to elicit neural potential contingent negative variation(CNV). For setting up strong association of the neural potential with speech intention, I first wanted to identify different EEG protocols that can elicit maximum amplitude of the CNV. This initial research will inform the development of BCI paradigm to access an AAC device.
Link to poster: Can CNVs indicate intent of speech?(pdf)
1) How to improve technological options for aiding aphasia recovery,
2) How to recruit participants for this study with limited personal funds?