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ASHA 2023 Convention lightbulb for innovation with a jigsaw for collaboration and a Cambodian family

E.A. Draffan

ASHA Convention 2023 and new Cambodian Symbols

The ASHA 2023 Convention held in Boston, USA (Nov 9 -18th) has the theme of "Igniting Innovation" and covers over 31 different topics related to speech, language and hearing plus business and global practices.

There are huge number of Augmentative and Alternative Communication sessions and on more general topics a series of presentations about Artificial Intelligence in Communication Sciences and Disorders (CSD) for the special 2023 Research Symposium with topics about: - Breaking Barriers with AI: Google's Programs for Advancing Accessibility, Communication, and Social Inclusion Speaker: Philip Nelson (Google)

  • Speech Disorder Research in the Big-Data Era: Large-scale Databases and Speech Analytics Speakers: Mark Hasegawa-Johnson (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign), Julie Liss & Visar Berisha (Arizona State University)

  • Advances in Speech Biomarkers for Monitoring Neurological and Mental Health Speakers: Vikram Ramanarayanan ( and Emily Provost (University of Michigan)

  • Personalized Speech Recognition and Vocal Synthesis--Advancing Clinical Care for Individuals with Speech Impairments Speakers: Richard Cave (MND Association) and Rupal Patel (Northeastern University)

  • An Update on Brain-Computer Interfaces Speakers: Leigh Hochberg (Mass General Research Institute/Harvard Medical School/Providence VA Medical Center) and Jun Wang (The University of Texas at Austin)

David Banes has a series of slides on the work of Global Symbols in his Master Class that are linked to the theme of AI and its potential effect on "Universal to Global: Recognizing the Impact of Language and Culture on Symbol Design for Communities"
AI descriptions

Finally, this month we are very grateful to Alana Tran for sharing her SEA symbol set on Global Symbols. Alana began drawing her own symbols for an upcoming service project in Cambodia when she had difficulty finding ones that were culturally appropriate. Initially she did as much reading as she could online about suitable designs, but when she arrived in Cambodia she was able to get feedback from teachers and other educational staff in Phnom Penh and make changes (or entirely news icons) tailored to their needs. There are 91 symbols, several with female and male options. At present all have labels in English, but it is hoped local languages such as Khmer, can be added at a later date and this is already possible manually when using Board Builder. cambodian symbols

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