Speech Therapy -> Phonology


Phonology can be described as an aspect of language that deals with rules for the structure and sequencing of speech sounds. A phonological disorder may be characterized as a child who has numerous phoneme errors that can usually be grouped into categories (phonological processes), and they are usually not linked to oral motor difficulties and/or normal development.

Minor focus areas

Activity List(s)

Visual Schedule Cards

Related Disorder(s)

  • Speech sound disorders - Speech sound disorders is an umbrella term referring to any difficulty or combination of difficulties with perception, motor production, or phonological representation of speech sounds and speech segments—including phonotactic rules governing permissible speech sound sequences in a language.
  • Childhood apraxia of speech - Childhood apraxia of speech (CAS) is a disorder that involves difficulty in making speech sounds voluntarily and stringing these sounds together in the correct order to make words. A person with childhood apraxia of speech is not intellectually impaired. Speech pathologists assess, diagnose and support people with CAS.
  • Motor Speech Disorders - Dysarthria can be related to neurological damage, however it can be related to many other causes. Dysarthria is a motor speech disorder above all. A dysarthria diagnoses can come from a weakened Parkinson’s patient, a anatomy damaged TBI patient, a stroke patient with cranial nerve and strength deficits, etc).


Goal Bank

  • Luke will decrease gliding errors over a 6 week therapy period. 0


Therapists who selected this major focus area as their top area of expertise.

  • Heather McCrillis

    Heather McCrillis

    Therapist CCC-SLP

    I love working with PreK and elementary school students. I really enjoy working with children who...

    • Sidekick Therapy Partners Sidekick Therapy Partners
  • Erika Baldwin

    Erika Baldwin

    Therapist CCC-SLP

    Hi everyone! I've been been working for Sidekick Therapy Partners as a speech-language pathologis...

    • Sidekick Therapy Partners Sidekick Therapy Partners
  • Victoria Odell

    Victoria Odell

    Therapist CF-SLP
    • todell@mysidekicktherapy.com Personal Practice
    • Sidekick Therapy Partners Sidekick Therapy Partners

Reference links

  • Red Flags For Speech-Language Impairment In Bilingual Children 1 Author: Scott Prath On ASHA Wire - Red Flags for Speech-Language Impairment in Bilingual Children Differentiate disability from disorder by understanding common developmental milestones.
  • Bilingual Language Development Video 1 Author: Kathy Kohnert - YouTube Video on Bilingual Language Development by Kathy Kohnert
  • Language Difference vs Language Disorder: Assessing English Learners 1 Author: Carol Westby and Kimberly Murphy - Video available Language Difference vs Language Disorder: Assessing English Learners Carol Westby, Bilingual and Multicultural Services, Albuquerque, NM Kimberly Murphy (Host), Old Dominion UniversityFollow Document Type Presentation Publication Date 5-20-2020 Abstract To a large extent, determining whether an English learner has a language/learning disability is a process of elimination. There are no tests that can definitely tell us whether the student has a language/learning disability. Inappropriately identifying an EL student as having a language/learning disability can result in stigmatization or reduced access to academic content, but waiting too long to identify a student who truly has a language/learning disability can be the beginning or the extension of a cycle of communicative, academic, and/or social failure. Assessment of EL learners requires collaboration between classroom teachers and speech/language pathologists. This session will cover (1) factors that complicate the assessment of English learners; (2) multi-tiered systems of support (MTSS) and performance-based assessment; (3) process assessments, and (4) dynamic narrative assessment. Comments This professional development webinar was presented by Dr. Carol Westby for speech-language pathologists in Virginia. It was funded by the Virginia Department of Education and hosted by Dr. Kimberly Murphy, Old Dominion University.
  • Nonword Repetition Tasks For Dynamic Assessment or Bilingual Evaluations 1 Author: LeadersProject - Nonword Repetition Tasks (NWRT) can be used as a dynamic assessment as opposed to static assessment. NWRTs assess phonological working memory, speech perception, phonological assembly, and short term memory. These skills can have an impact on phonological awareness, word learning, and overall language acquisition. NWRTs are a useful tool to identify children/students with developmental language disorders because they are less culturally and linguistically biased than standardized language tests, as they do not call upon a child’s/student’s prior knowledge as many standardized tests do. Rather, NWRTs ask the child/student to repeat a series of nonwords of differing syllable length and complexity of sound combinations, thereby assessing linguistic abilities that have not been taught or learned previously. Nonword repetition tasks have been analyzed by number of consonants correct or number of items correct. There are different NWRTs for several languages, which contain phonemes specific for that particular language.
  • Bilingual (English/Spanish) Therapy Materials By Bilinguistics 1 Author: Bilinguistics - Downloads and resources for providing bilingual therapy (Spanish/English)
  • The Effect of Dose Frequency On Treatment Efficacy For Children With Speech Sound Disorders 1 Author: Kristen Marie Giesbrecht - Speech-language pathologists (SLPs) are urged to make evidence-based treatment decisions, but it is challenging to determine the appropriate intervention intensity for children with speech sound disorders (SSD) due to limited published information. This study is a single subject, multiple baseline design that compares the phonological changes of four preschool children (4;0 to 4;9) who received therapy either twice a week or four times a week for a total of twenty, 50-minute sessions.
  • How Do Phonological Processes Differ Between Spanish and English? 1 Author: Scott Prath - Description of how do Phonological Processes differ Between Spanish and English.
  • Evaluation of Bilingual Children- Considerations 1 Author: Alejandro E. Brice and Roanne G. Brice - An overview of considerations when evaluating bilingual (Spanish/English) children
  • Bilingual (Spanish/English) Evaluation Resources 1 Author: Bilinguistics - Dozens of speech, language, fluency, and other evaluation resources for bilingual evaluations
  • Language In Brief 1 Author: The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association - Language is a rule-governed behavior. It is defined as the comprehension and/or use of a spoken (i.e., listening and speaking), written (i.e., reading and writing), and/or other communication symbol system (e.g., American Sign Language).
  • Bilingual Service Delivery 1 Author: ASHA - Information and resources regarding bilingual service delivery by SLPs (from ASHA)
  • Spanish Phonemic Inventory 1 Author: ASHA - Spanish Phonemic Inventory and Facts about Spanish Phonemes by ASHA
  • Learning Two Languages: Bilingualism 1 Author: ASHA - Information and resources for SLPs and parents of bilingual children
  • Multilingual, Multicultural, Bilingual Resource Link For SLPs 1 Author: ASHA - Link includes ASHA resources and information related to evaluation and treatment of clients from linguistically and culturally diverse backgrounds. Link includes ASHA resources to: Accent Modification Bilingual Service Delivery Collaborating With Interpreters, Transliterators, and Translators Cultural Competence Voice and Communication Services for Transgender and Gender Diverse Populations Dynamic Assessment Micro Course Cultural Competence Self Assessment Phonemic Inventories and Cultural and Linguistic Information Across Languages Collaboration With Interpreters: Securing Positive Outcomes Practical Assessment and Treatment Strategies for English Language Learners with Language Impairments Serving Clients From Diverse Backgrounds: Speech-Language Difference vs. Disorder Langu Continuing the Dialogue on Dialect: Positive Steps Toward Less Biased Assessments of Children Who Speak African American Englishage and Identity--Shifting Away from a Deficit Perspective on African American English Información en español
  • The Link Between Language and Spelling: What Speech-Language Pathologists and Teachers Need to Know 3 Author: Carol Moxam - SLPs have expertise in the key speech and language domains such as phonology, morphology, and semantics and are therefore well placed to play an important role in supporting learners in making links between these domains in relation to spelling development and intervention.
  • Articulation and Intelligibility Norms For Spanish and English 1 Author: Bilinguistics - Articulation and Intelligibility Norms for Spanish and English by Bilinguistics
  • Speech Development In Spanish and English: What the Differences Mean to SLPs 1 Author: Bilinguistics - Speech Development in Spanish and English: What the differences mean to SLPs by Bilinguistics
  • Prosodic Patterns In Children’s Multisyllabic Word Productions 2 Author: Margaret M. Kehoe - This paper reviews results from a series of studies that examined the influence of metrical and segmental effects on English-speaking children’s multisyllabic word productions. Three different approaches (prosodic structure, trochaic template, and perceptual salience) that have been proposed in the literature to account for children’s prosodic patterns are presented and evaluated. An analysis of children’s truncation or syllable deletion patterns revealed the following robust findings: (a) Stressed and word-final unstressed syllables are preserved more frequently than nonfinal unstressed syllables, (b) word-internal unstressed syllables with obstruent onsets are preserved more frequently than word-internal syllables with sonorant onsets, (c) unstressed syllables with non-reduced vowels are preserved more frequently than unstressed syllables with reduced vowels, and (d) right-sided stressed syllables are preserved more frequently than left-sided stressed syllables. An analysis of children’s stress patterns revealed that children made greater numbers of stress errors in target words with irregular stress. Clinical implications of these findings are presented and additional studies that have applied a metrical approach to clinical populations are described.
  • School-Aged Children's Phonological Accuracy In Multisyllabic Words On a Whole-Word Metric 2 Author: Glenda K. Mason - Phonological accuracy in MSW production was differentiated for elementary school–aged children with TD and PPD, using a whole-word metric. To assist with the identification of children with ongoing PPD, the metric has the ability to detect weaknesses and track progress in global MSW phonological production.
  • The Complexity Approach to Phonological Treatment: How to Select Treatment Targets 3 Author: Holly L. Storkel - There are a number of evidence-based treatments for preschool children with phonological disorders (Baker & McLeod, 2011). However, a recent survey by Brumbaugh and Smit (2013) suggests that speech-language pathologists are not equally familiar with all evidence-based treatment alternatives, particularly the complexity approach. The goal of this clinical tutorial is to provide coaching on the implementation of the complexity approach in clinical practice, focusing on treatment target selection. Incorporating the complexity approach into clinical practice will expand the range of evidence-based treatment options that clinicians can use when treating preschool children with phonological disorders.
  • Children's Consonant Acquisition In 27 Languages: A Cross-Linguistic Review 2 Author: Sharynne McLeod and Kathryn Crowe - The aim of this study was to provide a cross-linguistic review of acquisition of consonant phonemes to inform speech-language pathologists' expectations of children's developmental capacity by (a) identifying characteristics of studies of consonant acquisition, (b) describing general principles of consonant acquisition, and (c) providing case studies for English, Japanese, Korean, and Spanish. Children across the world acquire consonants at a young age. Five-year-old children have acquired most consonants within their ambient language; however, individual variability should be considered. https://www.theinformedslp.com/review/that-one-time-a-journal-article-on-speech-sounds-broke-the-slp-internet