Day 10: Learn the Lingo

Day 10: Learn the Lingo! Know what you're looking at and what to expect when reading through the program planner! Some handy tips for setting your schedule. Find this post and more by @speechykeenslp over at

Reading through the planner can be overwhelming! What do all of these different types of sessions really mean? How can you pick good ones and avoid some Lemons? Here are some explanations and my top tips for setting up a stellar schedule!

1 and 2 Hour Sessions
  • ASHA’s Definition:
    Seminar sessions are intended to provide in-depth, continuing education for speech-language pathologists and audiologists, and speech-language-hearing scientists. Emphasis is on clinical applications and research advances, backed by appropriate levels of evidence. Content is specifically tailored to fit either a one or two hour time period.

    My Experience:

  • 1 hour sessions are the most common. The content in these sessions can differ greatly! This can be a review of research, shirt consist and with great takeaways. Or perhaps it’s a new way to do therapy! It could be a single technique, a session packed with information or a total snooze fest.
  • There are fewer 2 hour sessions than 1, they are harder to get accepted! 2 hour sessions have to really defend the amount of time they need to share content. This doesn’t guarantee that they are better, but it’s good to give them a look over!
  • If you get part way into a 2 hour session and it isn’t what you expected, you can always switch over to a 1 hour session for the 2nd hour and not lose that CEU window entirely!
    Be sure to note your thoughts on these sessions – you will be asked to rate them when you submit your CEUs after convention and these ratings hold some serious sway!
Short courses
  • ASHA’s Definition:
    Short Courses are ticketed courses with an additional fee for attendance. Short Courses provide instruction with emphasis on clinical applications and/or science backed by appropriate levels of evidence. Material being presented must be at the intermediate level or above. Course materials (handouts) will be distributed as a CD that is only available to ticket holders.

    My Experience:

  • These sessions are 3 hours long. The majority of the time they are invited speakers, so they’ve been vetted for you!
  • These are very focused sessions – typically on one specific topic. If the topic sounds interesting, and you’ve heard the speakers are good, I would encourage you to consider a short course!
  • Take note of the ASHA description – this material is for intermediate and above! If you are exploring an area that you have little experience in, a short course may not be the best option.
  • Make sure to set your schedule before considering a short course! I have had to miss a highly desired 1 hour session for a short course because I hadn’t set my schedule first!
Technical Sessions
  • ASHA’s Definition:
    Technical Research
    A Technical Research session is a 20-minute presentation of research or research in progress. The purpose is to communicate scientific information in an efficient form. A 10-minute question and answer period follows the scientific presentation.

    Technical Clinical
    Technical Clinical Sessions, modeled after Technical Research Sessions, will consist of a 20-minute oral presentation that focuses on the technical aspects of a specific diagnostic or therapeutic strategy by the clinician. Developed as “how to” programs, they emphasize the applied, clinical aspects of the professions. The clinical presentation will be followed by a brief 10-minute question and answer period to allowing the presenter to clarify information for the audience.

    My Experience:

  • These sessions are very “to the point”. There is little fluff. It can either be extremely helpful or extremely dry.
  • Sometimes they put on by companies wanting to share their product/services and different applications of their research/product.
  • Sometimes they are also great “how-to” sessions for different skill sets not directly related to therapeutic intervention.
  • The research ones often offer little “application”, but are good indicators of what research is being done in an area without you needed to read a paper or listen to an hour long talk. They get you the information quickly!
  • Be sure to check the “level” of these sessions – sometimes it may seem like “greek” if it’s above your current understanding of a topic!
Poster Sessions

My Experience:

  • There will be a hall dedicated to posters. Each poster will only be on display for a specific time frame.
  • Within that time frame, there is an even smaller window in which the poster presenter will be there to answer questions and explain their poster. This small window is the ONLY time in which you can claim ASHA CEUs. So be sure you check closely when adding a poster to your schedule!
  • Each poster count as “15 minutes” towards your convention CEUs. So dedicate and hour and see four!
  • Be sure to take note of what posters you see – you will need to know their numbers to submit your CEUs after convention!
  • If you have some down time and want to browse the posters, you can wander through the rows and read them without concern for CEUs! Many are quite thorough and have the contact information for the presenter so you can e-mail them after convention.
Twilight Series
  • Although these count as “1 hour sessions”, their timing involves interesting considerations for attendees. Scheduled later in the evening (6:30 pm), many overlook these sessions in a rush to get to dinner. But these session offer a much more intimate experience that shouldn’t be missed. The groups are usually smaller, the atmosphere more relaxed and everyone is clearly interested in the topic to stay late. This often leads the lively discussions, audience participation and an overall great experience. I would strongly encourage you to put at least new twilight session on your schedule, and not just because one of my talks were scheduled at this time!
What’s coming up next?

Over the next three days I will be giving you a peek into which sessions I’ll be attending and why they stood out to me! Now keep in mind, I work with school aged children in my private practice. So my session choice will reflect that setting! But I’m hoping my explanation for choosing these talks should be helpful to you, regardless of your setting! See you tomorrow for my Thursday ASHA picks!

What session are you looking forward to the most?

– Tara, the Speechy Keen SLP


Tara Roehl owns and operates a private telepractice clinic in Colorado focusing on social cognition, executive functioning and the use of technology in therapy. Previously she has worked in Illinois, California, Rwanda and the Philippines in both public schools and private practices.

Be sure to hear Tara during her four presentations at ASHA ‘14!

  • Session 1115: Camp Confidence: From Zero to Hero
    [Thursday 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm]
    This presentation will address current bully/shame cultures and introduce participants to therapy techniques for building self-confidence in students dealing with speech and language delays while addressing their therapeutic goals using active and engaging activities including games, iPad apps, and life skill tasks.
  • Session 1212: iPad to iPlay 2.0: Teaching Play Through Apps for Preschoolers
    [Thursday 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm]
    This presentation will introduce participants to popular tablet gaming apps and creative adaptations to improve active participation in therapeutic activities for the development of problem-solving, speech and language development, interactive play, pragmatics, executive functioning skills and behavior modification. Applicable for preschoolers and adaptable for older clients.
  • Session 1441: Get Out of That Box! Four Creative Mold-Breaking Models of Private Practice
    [Friday 3:30 pm – 4:30 pm]
    This presentation will introduce participants to four unique models of private practice. Four clinicians will share their history, mission, and their unique service models. This session will encourage participants to develop professional resilience and shift service-delivery patterns as we face healthcare reform and other trends that affect reimbursement.
  • Session 1768: iPad to iPlay 2.0: Teaching Play Through Apps for Elementary Through Middle School
    [Saturday 2:30 – 3:30]
    This presentation will introduce participants to popular tablet gaming apps and creative adaptations to improve active participation in therapeutic activities for the development of problem-solving, speech and language development, interactive play, pragmatics, executive functioning skills, and behavior modification. Applicable for elementary to middle school clients
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  1. SpeechyKeen SLP » #ASHA15 Tips and Tricks: Session Types

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