Melanie Fried-Oken, Ph.D.

Oregon Health & Science University UCEDD
Institute on Development & Disability
Oregon Health & Science University
707 SW Gaines St.
Portland, OR 97239
Phone: 503-494-7587
Email: [email protected]
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Last Updated: September 30, 2021

Melanie Fried-Oken

Leadership: Co-UCEDD Director
Principal Investigator
Primary Activity Coordinators: Research Director
Discipline Coordinators: Assistive Technology
Specialty Resource Contacts: Augmentative and Alternative Communication
Assistive Technology
Neurogenic Communication Disorders
Speech-Language Pathology
Project/Program/Clinic Contacts: REKNEW: Reclaiming Expressive Knowledge in Everyone with Communication Impairments
Translational Refinement of Adaptive Brain-Computer Interface System for Locked-In Patients
Discipline(s): Speech-Language Pathology
Assistive Technology
AUCD Council Membership: No Council Membership
Research: Augmentative and alternative communication
Assistive Technology
Neurogenic communication disorders
Education: Ph.D., Boston University: Interdisciplinary Study of Language Behavior
M.A., Northwestern University: Speech-Language Pathology
B.A., University of Rochester
Service: American Speech-Language-Hearing Association
International Society for Augmentative and Alternative Communication
United States Society for Augmentative and Alternative Communication
Rehabilitation Engineering Society of North America


Melanie Fried-Oken, Ph.D., CCC/Sp is a certified speech-language pathologist and a leading international clinician and researcher in the field of Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) where she provides expertise about assistive technology for persons with acquired disabilities who cannot use speech or writing for expression.

She is co-author of the book Speaking Up and Spelling It Out, a collection of essays written by adults with disabilities using speech technology. Dr. Fried-Oken has a number of federal grants to develop, evaluate and add knowledge to the field about communication technology for persons with Alzheimer's disease and primary progressive aphasia, locked-in syndrome, ALS and other neurodegenerative diseases, and older adults. Additionally, she participated in podcasts and webinars related to assistive technology for adults with complex communication needs. Dr. Fried-Oken has worked with the UCEDD and community-based disabilty organization, AT Lab at Community Vision, to produce a series of videos on telehealth for people with I/DD who rely on AAC, and to publish symbol-based patient decision aids for people with I/DD and emergent literacy skills. 

She sits on a number of national and local boards, is a member of an NIH standing committee, and is an active editorial consutant for journals related to Augmentative and Alternative Communication, assistive technology and speech-language pathology. 

Recent Publications:

Peters, B., Bedrick, S., Dudy, S., Higger, M., Kinsella, M., Mclaughlin, D., Erdogmus, D. & Fried-Oken, M.. (2020). SSVEP BCI and eye tracking use by individuals with late-stage ALS and visual impairments. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 14, 457.

Fried-Oken, M., Kinsella, M., Peters, B., Eddy, B., Wajokeowski, B. (2020). Human visual skills for brain-computer interface use: A tutorial. Disability and Rehabilitation: Assistive Technology.

Eddy, B., ..... Fried-Oken, M. (2019). Trends in research participant categories and descriptions in abstracts from the International BCI Meeting series, 1999 to 2016. Brain-Computer Interfaces (BCI). DOI:10.1080/2326263X.2019.1643203

Light, J., McNaughton, D., Beukelman, D., Fager, S. K., Fried-Oken, M., Jakobs, T., & Jakobs, E. (2019). Challenges and opportunities in augmentative and alternative communication: Research and technology development to enhance communication and participation for individuals with complex communication needs. Augmentative and Alternative Communication. 35(1). DOI: 10/1080/07434618.2018.1556732.

Fager, S. K., Fried-Oken, M., Jakobs, T., & Beukelman, D. R. (2019). New and emerging technologies for adults with complex communication needs and severe motor impairments: State of the science (Special Issue]. Augmentative and Alternative Communication, 35(1). DOI: 10.1080/07434618.2018.1556730

Oken, B., Memmott, T., Eddy, B., Wiedrick, J., & Fried-Oken, M. (2019). Vigilance state fluctuations and performance using Brain-Computer Interface for communication. Brain-Computer Interfaces. 10.1080/2326263X.2019.1571356

Fried-Oken, M. (2018). Person-centered approaches to communication participation and
engagement for individuals with primary progressive aphasia and dementia. Seminars in Speech & Language, 39(3): 195-196.

Mooney, A., Beale, N., & Fried-Oken, M. (2018). Group communication treatment
for individuals with primary progressive aphasia and their partners. Seminars in Speech & Language, 39(3).

Mooney, A., Bedrick, S., Noethe, G., Spaulding, S., & Fried-Oken, M. (2018). Mobile
technology to support lexical retrieval during activity retell in primary progressive aphasia. Aphasiology, 1-27. DO1: org/10.1080/02687038.2018.1447640

Peters, B., Higger, M., Quivira, F., Bedrick, S., Dudy, S., Eddy, B., ... & Erdogmus, D. (2018). Effects of simulated visual acuity and ocular motility impairments on SSVEP brain-computer interface performance: an experiment with Shuffle Speller. Brain-Computer Interfaces, 5(2-3), 58-72.

Frontera, W. R., Bean, J. F., Damiano, D., Ehrlich-Jones, L., Fried-Oken, M., Jette, A., ... &
Ottenbacher, K. J. (2017). Rehabilitation Research at the National Institutes of Health: Moving the field forward (executive summary). Neurorehabilitation and Neural Repair, 31(4), 304-314.
Note: This article appeared in 6 additional journals

Chavarriaga, R., Fried-Oken, M., Kleih, S., Lotte, F., & Scherer, R. (2017). Heading for new             shores! Overcoming pitfalls in BCI design. Brain-Computer Interfaces, 1-14.

Childes, J.M., Palmer, A. D., Fried-Oken, M., & Graville, D. (2017). The Use of Technology for Communication after Total Laryngectomy: A Mixed Methods Study. American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology.0.1-17

Orhan, U., Nezamfar, H., Akcakaya, M., Erdogmus, D., Higger, M., Moghadamfalahi, M., ... &            Fried-Oken, M. (2016). Probabilistic simulation framework for EEG-based BCI design. Brain-Computer Interfaces, 1-15.

Peters, B., Mooney, A., Oken, B. & Fried-Oken, M. (2016). Soliciting BCI user experience feedback from people with severe speech and physical impairments. Brain Computer Interfaces. DOI:10.1080/2326263X.2015.1138056

Fried-Oken, M., Beukelman, D., and Hux, K. (2012). Current and future AAC research considerations for adults with acquired cognitive and communication impairments. Assistive Technology, 24: 56-66.

Fager, S., Beukelman, D., Fried-Oken, M., Jakobs, T., Baker, J. (2012). Access Interface Strategies. Assistive Technology, 24: 25-33.

Rowland, C., Fried-Oken, M., Steiner, S., Lollar, D., Phelps, R., Simeonsson, R., Grandlund, M. (2012). Developing the ICF-CY for AAC Profile and Code Set for Children Who Rely on AAC. Augmentative and Alternative Communication, 28(1), 21-32.