The Speech Guy

Tech Savvy Speech Therapy

Top 10 Reasons for using iPad in therapy

A few years ago if someone asked what type of speech-therapy tools I used with my patients, I would often tell them: dolls, blocks, bubbles, balls, flashcards and such. But now I typically tell them it’s the iPad. The topic of ‘iPad’ is currently huge among speech-language pathologists. Try reading through blogs or forums without seeing whole threads or discussions dedicated to using the iPad during speech-language therapy. So what are the benefits of using a tablet over the traditional materials?

10)  Developers are constantly improving apps, so the apps can evolve with your client.

9)   Regardless of the child’s age or ability level, the iPad can be accessible through voice or touch.

8)  Apps can easily be incorporated into playing, reading, writing, spelling, grammar, songs and video.

7) Many apps offer free or ‘lite’ versions, so before a therapist makes a big purchase they can sample the program’s features then determine if it’s worth the money.

6 ) There are many apps that offer the ability to record a child’s productions to save for later comparison. With this option, you can allow your client to do self-rating and go back to double-check their speech.

5) Parents can help their child participate in school lessons to reinforce education at home, and games and activities can draw in friends and classmates, eliminating isolation.

4) Apps that are skill-focused often make great tools for quick criterion-referenced assessments or dynamic assessments of a given skill, without needing to prepare lots of supplies ahead of time.

3) The data-tracking capabilities of app-compatible devices allow therapists to focus on the task at hand. You can then email the session data to the client’s caregivers or yourself to include in SOAP notes.

2) Apps can target apraxia, articulation, language, play skills, pragmatic skills, functional communication and more – all in one device. No more lugging around 12 different sets of flashcards.

1) iPads are cool! Many of my clients, children with autism, could care less if I took out scissors, paper and crayons – and most of the time these end up on the floor. Children are simply more motivated by interacting with the iPad than paper–and–pencil activities

Have other reasons?  Should this be a longer list? Please leave your suggestions  in the comment sections and I’ll make an updated list !

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16 Responses

  1. Sara says

    great!

    smilespeech.blogspot.ca

  2. graceglimmers says

    I am VERY interested in the ipad for diagnostics and treatment. Do you have a favorite preschool evaluations? I am an SLP working in Florida. I want to continue to build a private practice, and in my eyes this seems the way to go.

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  3. Ismael says

    Guys, any we mean ANY communication about Feedly for iPad would be great. There are a great deal of us cotinnually checking the app store with no luck. I understand you had to re-submit, but where are you in the process?Had the re-submission happened? Are you still working on the fixes Apple asked for? Do you have a ballpark idea about when we can expect Feedly for iPad?

    • Joseph says

      do you have the whole iFamily now? I shouldn’t laugh, I’m an Apple adcdit too and bought a new Macbook pro last weekend now all I need is the firewire connection so I can actually use it properly! Enjoy, it’s really nice when you get an Apple product and you have to peel back’ the layers to get at it, it just screams quality^^

  4. adornalee says

    According to me it is very nice that you are using iPad in a the speech therapy, as today’s generation Don’t like to play with doll, bubble. New technologies more attract them.

    Speech Therapy

  5. C says

    Any preferences between the iPad 2 or 3?

  6. Alysia says

    One more :) I use it with my middle schoolers with autism/aspergers as an easy way to video record small groups interacting socially. I incorporate into my pragmatic lessons on good/not so good conversation skills; eye contact, personal space, etc., topic maintenance, perspective taking, etc. We talk about these skills, I record, then each child is given a two sided card with a red sad face & green happy face while they watch to identify the not so good skill that was used.
    Also, for my higher functioning kids, we develop video modeling clips on desired-undesired behaviors, etc.
    I vaguely remember therapy without an iPad & never want to go back!!!

  7. Alysia says

    While working with children with autism, the iPad helps to serve their often needed or desired structure, as the iPad’s timing of responses, voice output, etc. become predictable & quickly admired by these children. Also, it serves as an amazing reinforcer. Most children will complete any presented task when followed by even two short minutes of use at the end of the session. Of course if the introduction of the reinforcement needs to be sooner, shorter intervals of its use are allowed too. The versatility is there to when & how you utilize the iPad.

  8. GeekSLP -Barbara (@GeekSlp) says

    Great post Jeremy!

  9. Anonymous says

    How do you use with groups of 5? I’m thinkin I need some more IPADS!!! :)

    • Alysia says

      I use it to facilitate turn taking skills by allowing short intervals of individual time or by playing a game (of course a learning game) in which the app allows for turn taking. I also use it to provide short stories both verbally & pictorially.

      • tibituj says

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      • Yati says

        It is nice to find some decent conetnt for once, I was getting sickof the absolute drivel I come across recently, you deserve respect for posting readable and informative material.

  10. devon (@huxuu) says

    gFlashcards for ipad is very good flashcards app. I use it for my art classes.