Center for Speech, Language and Hearing Disorders

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For the community

SUNY Cortland’s Center for Speech, Language and Hearing Disorders provides services to children and adults with a variety of speech, language, voice, swallowing, cognition, and hearing delays or disorders. Graduate student clinicians provide free evaluation and therapy services under the supervision of certified speech-language pathologists across the following areas:

Pediatric and School-Aged Speech and Language Disorders

Early and frequent intervention is the best course of action for any child suspected of having delayed or disordered speech and language. Problems pronouncing the sounds in words, expressing thoughts and feelings, and understanding others can directly impair a child's ability to communicate. Issues with saying and hearing sounds correctly can also impact how a child is able to read and write later on in their schooling. Evaluations and therapy will be provided to prioritize each child's areas of need and develop a plan to help the child's communication skills thrive.

Brain Injury Related Speech, Language, and Cognitive Disorders

Traumatic brain injuries, strokes, and diseases can cause individuals of any age to lose their communication and thinking skills. This clinic offers individualized assessment and therapy whether the problem involves speaking clarity, recalling words, understanding others, reading, writing, planning, remembering, or regulating emotions and actions to be socially appropriate. Client goals for therapy take center stage as their therapy program will be specifically designed to help them live as successfully and independently as possible.

Voice Disorders

Individuals of all ages may experience problems with their voicing abilities. Whenever a voice concern has persisted beyond two weeks, it is highly recommended to seek a referral to an Ear, Nose, and Throat (ENT) doctor who can view the voicing mechanism to determine the exact cause of the problem. You can request your ENT to send their medical findings to our clinic where we can treat your problem to help it resolve as quickly as possible and decrease the risk of it returning.

Athletes, in particular, may experience a closed-off sensation in their throat in the midst of intense physical exertion without any explanation. This is often mistaken for asthma. If this is the case, seek a referral to an ENT to determine if you have exercised-induced laryngeal obstruction (EILO). If so, a plan of care can be easily set up at our clinic to address it so this problem can be overcome for good.

Stuttering and Cluttering Disorders

Society can be especially cruel to individuals who have a hard time with their forward flow of speech. If you or anyone you know is experiencing difficulties with their "flow" or fluency of speech, please let them know that the graduate clinicians at the SUNY Cortland Speech, Language and Hearing Clinic can help them. The goal of this therapy is to help people from all ages on their journey toward confident and successful communication.

Accent Modification

At our clinic, we believe that each person's accent is a representation of their beautiful linguistic and cultural background. Some individuals may decide that they would like to acquire a new accent or modify their current accent to fit occupational or societal pressures to increase how easily they are understood. We respect each client's motivations and can provide expert assistance helping them increase their speaking repertoire.

Swallowing Disorders

If anyone has suffered from difficulty eating and swallowing, a condition called "dysphagia", they know how critical it is to receive quality care. We provide exceptional swallowing therapy services for individuals of all ages. Whether it be a child who has been classified as a "picky eater" (e.g., often associated with autism spectrum disorder), someone recovering their swallow skills after a stroke, or individuals with a history of head and neck cancer, we are at your service. We can also work closely with the speech-language pathologists at Guthrie Cortland Medical Center to refer clients in need of swallowing imaging studies called "Modified Barium Swallow Studies" or "Fiberoptic Endoscopic Evaluations of Swallowing". Our approach to dysphagia management is collaborative, person-centered, and evidence-based.

Gender Affirming Voice Services

Transitions Voice Services are dedicated to individuals who want to use a healthy, normal voice in their chosen professional, personal, and gender roles. These services are designed to educate and train clients to produce an optimum voice in a sustainable manner so that clients can present themselves in a way that they are comfortable with across situations and settings. Sessions are typically once a week for 60 minutes in duration. If the clinic is over-enrolled, sessions may be conducted in small groups if clients agree.

Parkinson Voice Project® SPEAK OUT!® and LOUD Crowd® Services

According to research, up to 89% of people with Parkinson’s disease begin to have trouble talking and up to 95% start having difficulty swallowing. To help slow these problems down, start therapy as soon as possible. Being a part of SPEAK OUT!® and LOUD Crowd® can help improve the way Parkinson’s affects your voice and swallow.

What is SPEAK OUT!® and LOUD Crowd®?

The SPEAK OUT!® and LOUD Crowd® programs were developed by the Parkinson Voice Project in Richardson, TX. SPEAK OUT!® is a therapy designed specifically for people with Parkinson’s disease to improve their voice and swallowing. Muscles in the throat can become weak because they’re not used with purpose and strength. SPEAK OUT!® and LOUD Crowd® teach how to use those muscles differently for speaking and swallowing so talking and eating stay healthy and strong longer. In this program, speech is changed from talking like always to doing it better! SPEAK OUT!® is usually completed in 12 sessions across four weeks. In only four weeks, people say they’ve improved their speaking, their ability to be heard, and their overall quality of life.

When SPEAK OUT!® is finished, people can join the LOUD Crowd®, a group therapy that meets once a week to keep tuned up and improving. But the best parts are working with our therapists and students, plus being with other people who are doing the same thing.

The Speech, Language and Hearing Center is located in the Professional Studies Building on the university's campus. It is the clinical training site for graduate students in the Communication Disorders and Sciences Department. All clinical services are free and supervised by New York state-licensed, ASHA-certified speech-language pathologists and audiologists. The American Speech-Language Hearing Association (ASHA) is the national accrediting body for the professions of speech-language pathology and audiology. 

For appointments or more information, contact the Communication Disorders and Sciences Department at 607-753-5423. 

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We want your feedback!

If you have participated in therapy at our Center for Speech, Language and Hearing Disorders, we would love to hear about your experiences. Please complete our online Client Satisfaction Survey.

For SUNY Cortland students

The Center for Speech, Language, and Hearing Disorders is the campus training site for graduate student clinical experiences in the Communication Disorders and Sciences Department. Graduate students may also have the opportunity to provide community-based outreach services at local preschools, schools, or adult care facilities. Clinical experiences begin the first semester of the graduate program. This hands-on learning experience is invaluable for externships and future career goals.

The Master of Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders education program in speech-language pathology at SUNY Cortland is accredited by the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, 2200 Research Boulevard, #310, Rockville, MD 20850, 800-498-2071 or 301-296-5700.

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Contact Us

Graduate Coordinator: Deborah Sharp
Department Office: Professional Studies Building, Room 2201
Phone: 607-753-5423
Fax: 607-753-5940