Allison Paff (Communicative Disorders M.A. Student) Selected for Statewide Research Competition

Allison Paff, a graduate student in the M.A. program in Communicative Disorders, recently presented her team’s research at the Cal State Fullerton Student Creative and Research (SCAR) competition. She was one of ten campus-wide finalists selected to move on to the CSU statewide Student Research Competition, to be held at CSU San Luis Obispo on April 28-29, 2017.

Allison’s study is titled “Investigation of Feedback Schedules on Speech Motor Learning in Healthy Younger and Older Adults.” The authors are Phil Weir-Mayta (Ph.D. CCC-SLP), Allison Paff (B.A.), Joshua Stockton (B.A.), and Crystal Munoz (B.A). Their research investigates the impact of age and feedback frequency on the learning of a novel speech motor task. Motor learning is a relatively well-established area in limb motor literature, but very little information is known about speech motor learning, and even less is known about speech motor learning throughout the course of aging. The acquisition and retention of a novel speech task in older and younger adults were compared, and individuals received varying levels of feedback depending on their group assignment. The results demonstrate that feedback condition and age predict absolute error in a speech motor learning task. Future studies regarding speech motor learning should include older adult participants to account for age-based learning differences before any therapeutic protocols can be established for impaired populations, such as individuals with Parkinson's disease. We congratulate Allison, her research team, and their faculty mentor, Phil Weir-Mayta.

Paff Allison

Allison Paff, M.A. student in Communicative Disorders