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Funded Projects

Grant Status: Completed

Grant Title: Training Program for Pediatric CommunicationDisorders

Project Director(s):

Ronald Bradley Gillam
Utah State University
Communicative Disorders & Deaf
1000 Old Main Hill
Logan, UT  84322-1000
Phone: (435) 797-1704
FAX: (435) 797-0221
Email: ron.gillam@usu.edu


A shortage of SLPs & AuDs who can provide care to children-including those with special health care needs, in a culturally competent, community based, family centered way is compounded by the lack of PhDs who train in these service areas & can affect change through research & public policy

Goals and Objectives:

Goal 1: To strengthen and broaden trainee and fellow leadership skills in MCH principles, in addition to clinical and didactic experiences related to pre-professional training in SLP and Audiology disciplines Objective 1: Make didactic, clinical, leadership, and research activities available to trainees. Objective 2: Develop Individualized Leadership Development Plans (ILDP) with each trainee. Objective 3: Conduct case study and problem-based learning seminars integrating Leadership Competencies. Goal 2: Trainees and fellows will receive multiple opportunities for interdisciplinary training and practice. Objective 1: Trainees will provide evaluation, and intervention services in designated clinical sites with emphasis on collaboration with professionals, families, community organizations, and state and federal agencies Objective 2: Trainees will provide evaluation and intervention services in designated clinical sites within multiple service delivery models Goal 3: Trainees and fellows will increase their knowledge and understanding of public health issues relative to children with communication disorders and their families. Objective 1: In interdisciplinary teams, conduct activities to strengthen the public health infrastructure at the community level including: community needs assessments, administrative structures, planning activities, and evaluation of programs Objective 2: Learn about medical needs and services from health care professionals and families. Goal 4: Trainees and fellows will understand the clinical research process and the relationship between clinical research and evidence-based practice. Objective 1: Mentor and support long-term trainees as they participate in research activities with other faculty and trainees and conduct independent research. Objective 2: Trainees will complete IRB certification in areas of interest.


Doctoral students (PhD and AuD) take 2 interdisciplinary courses and 1 course on multicultural issues as well as specific coursework on evidence based practice and research methodology. They also take additional coursework in two of six context specialization areas: Developmental Speech-Language Disorders, Deafness/Hard of Hearing, Neurodevelopmental Disorders, Assistive Technology, Autism Spectrum Disorders, and Cultural and Linguistic Differences. Trainees will obtain approximately 325 hours of clinical experiences in a variety of health care, educational, and social services settings where children with communication disorders are assessed and/or treated. These clinical experiences have been arranged carefully to provide trainees with experiences that provide practical, real-world knowledge about leadership, interdisciplinary training/practice, cultural competence, delivering family centered care, public health, research, emerging issues, and MCH/Title V and related legislation. All trainees and fellows complete an Individualized Leadership Development Plan (ILDP) that is used to document their progress toward acquiring the competencies and completing their personal goals during this program. Trainees' and fellows' progress are monitored by an executive committee comprised of the PI/Program Director, the Co-PI, the Coordinators, and the Content Area Directors.


USU-FLISPA collaborates with MCHB programs on the USU campus (URLEND and NCHAM) as well as other USU entities (CPD, Dept. of Psychology, Dept. of Special Ed., ASSERT and Sound Beginnings) provides depth in didactics & clinical experiences for trainees. Within the region this grant works closely with State of Utah Department of Health, Bureau of Children with Special Health Care Needs & the Ogden City School District). Students receive education, leadership, & clinical experiences at these sites


USU-FLISPA utilizes several data collection and tracking mechanisms including: a database on a password protected confidential website that allows individual trainees to enter their required leadership didactic, clinical, and research assignments. A second area on the website has been designated for faculty to enter MCHB-Administrative data and also worksheets for NIRS data collection.

Experience to Date:

During the 2010-2011 year, we had 10 long-term trainees [6 Master's level Speech-Language Pathology (SLP) trainees, 1 PhD SLP trainee and 3 Doctor of Audiology (AuD)]. Additionally, this year we had 16 short-term SLP and 6 short-term AuD trainees. All trainees were provided with information on the critical issues of health care, education, and clinical research particularly in rural areas. During the 2010-2011 year, FLISPA was awarded $30,000 to support training in Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) from the Autism CARES Act (CAA). These funds were disseminated to FLISPA from our partner program URLEND. These additional funds allowed FLISPA to recruit and support 3 medium-term ASD trainees. These trainees (1 AuD, and 2 Master's level SLP) had previously been exceptional FLISPA trainees. They completed 150 additional hours of specialized didactic, clinical and research-leadership activities. Funds were also used to support additional faculty time in the coordination of the clinical experiences and direction of the research-leadership projects. FLISPA is on target to accomplish all stated 5-year goals and has accomplished and is continuing to make progress on all annual activities.

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