Katherine Hustad, PhD

Waisman Center
University of Wisconsin-Madison
1500 Highland Ave
Madison, WI 53705-2280
 
Phone: 608-265-9977
Email: hustad@waisman.wisc.edu
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Last Updated: December 08, 2016

Katherine Hustad
 

Discipline Coordinators: Speech-Language Pathology
 
Discipline(s): Speech-Language Pathology
 
AUCD Council Membership: No Council Membership
 
Research: My primary interests center around individuals with significant speech intelligibility problems associated with dysarthria, especially those with cerebral palsy. My research has three main themes: 1.) understanding variables that influence speech intelligibility, including factors related to the listener, the communicative context, and the speaker; 2.) augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) interventions to enhance communication effectiveness for individuals with reduced speech intelligibility; and 3.) longitudinal development of speech, language, and communication in young children with cerebral palsy.

Two sets of studies are currently ongoing in my laboratory. The first focuses on speech intelligibility in adults and teens with cerebral palsy. Specifically, we are examining the impact of listeners? linguistic knowledge on the intelligibility of speech produced by individuals with dysarthria. In addition, we are also examining the influence of AAC strategies such as alphabet supplementation on dysarthric speech from both perceptual and production perspectives. Collectively, these studies will provide clinical information that validates AAC strategies that supplement speech by documenting improvements in intelligibility and explaining the underlying bases for those improvements. These studies will also provide theoretical information that furthers our understanding of the many variables associated with intelligibility.

The second set of studies, currently in the beginning phases, focus on speech development in children with cerebral palsy. Very little is known about the course of speech development in children with cerebral palsy and about which children will or will not develop functional speaking abilities. Research in my laboratory is currently seeking to characterize the speech of children with cerebral palsy beginning between the ages of 24 and 48 months. These children will be followed longitudinally for a four year period to determine how speech changes with development. Data collected from these children will be used to try to identify variables that predict functional speech outcomes. Results of this research will have important intervention implications for children with cerebral palsy?if variables that predict the development of functional speech can be identified, then interventions can be tailored more specifically to the individual child (i.e. those children who do not appear to be on a path to developing functional speech can receive AAC interventions sooner, rather than the more typical ?wait and see if speech develops? approach). This research will also serve to advance a comprehensive theory of speech intelligibility that identifies specific variables that contribute to intelligibility in children with dysarthria and specifies how these variables change over time.

Vita/Bio

My primary interests center around individuals with significant speech intelligibility problems associated with dysarthria, especially those with cerebral palsy. My research has three main themes: 1.) understanding variables that influence speech intelligibility, including factors related to the listener, the communicative context, and the speaker; 2.) augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) interventions to enhance communication effectiveness for individuals with reduced speech intelligibility; and 3.) longitudinal development of speech, language, and communication in young children with cerebral palsy. Two sets of studies are currently ongoing in my laboratory. The first focuses on speech intelligibility in adults and teens with cerebral palsy. Specifically, we are examining the impact of listeners? linguistic knowledge on the intelligibility of speech produced by individuals with dysarthria. In addition, we are also examining the influence of AAC strategies such as alphabet supplementation on dysarthric speech from both perceptual and production perspectives. Collectively, these studies will provide clinical information that validates AAC strategies that supplement speech by documenting improvements in intelligibility and explaining the underlying bases for those improvements. These studies will also provide theoretical information that furthers our understanding of the many variables associated with intelligibility. The second set of studies, currently in the beginning phases, focus on speech development in children with cerebral palsy. Very little is known about the course of speech development in children with cerebral palsy and about which children will or will not develop functional speaking abilities. Research in my laboratory is currently seeking to characterize the speech of children with cerebral palsy beginning between the ages of 24 and 48 months. These children will be followed longitudinally for a four year period to determine how speech changes with development. Data collected from these children will be used to try to identify variables that predict functional speech outcomes. Results of this research will have important intervention implications for children with cerebral palsy?if variables that predict the development of functional speech can be identified, then interventions can be tailored more specifically to the individual child (i.e. those children who do not appear to be on a path to developing functional speech can receive AAC interventions sooner, rather than the more typical ?wait and see if speech develops? approach). This research will also serve to advance a comprehensive theory of speech intelligibility that identifies specific variables that contribute to intelligibility in children with dysarthria and specifies how these variables change over time.