People

AAC Lab Members

Head shot of Rajinder Koul

Director Dr. Rajinder Koul, PhD.

Dr. Rajinder Koul is the Chair of the CSD department, the Houston Harte Centennial Professor, and the founding Director of the AAC Lab. He holds a Ph.D in Speech-Language Pathology with an emphasis in augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) from Purdue University and has 24 years of research and clinical experience in the area of augmentative and alternative communication. His research efforts have primarily focused on understanding the symbol, referent, and instructional variables that influence graphic symbol learning in persons with severe communication impairment as a consequence of developmental or acquired disabilities. Within this broad area, he has focused on synthetic speech perception, role of synthetic speech output on graphic symbol learning, and efficacy of AAC intervention in persons with aphasia.

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Tiffany Chavers, MS, CCC-SLP

Tiffany Chavers is a doctoral student and certified speech-language pathologist studying under the mentorship of Dr. Rajinder Koul. Her research interests include assessment and intervention for individuals who communicate by augmentative and alternative means. Specifically, Tiffany is interested in effective ways for individuals with ALS to communicate using eye gaze.

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Prarthana Shivabasappa., Ph.D.

Prarthana Shivabasappa completed her Ph.D. in Speech-Language Pathology at All India Institute of Speech and Hearing, India. She is currently a postdoctoral fellow in the lab. Her research interests include language acquisition, assessment, and intervention in bilingual children with developmental language disorders.

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HeeBaek Shin, Ph.D.

HeeBaek Shin is a post-doctoral fellow in AAC Lab. He completed his Ph.D. in voice disorders at the Hallym University, Korea. His background is in voice disorders and motor speech disorders. In the lab, HeeBaek hopes to learn how to develop and apply AAC for patients. It will be a very valuable experience to him when he goes back to his country.

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Lauren Henchey

Lauren Henchey is a 2nd year Masters student in Speech-Language Pathology. Her research interests include AAC intervention for individuals with developmental and acquired communication disorders.

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Alex Novoa

Alex Novoa is a bilingual Spanish-English speaker from El Salvador and Fort Worth, Texas. She has three years of teaching experience and is currently working on her Masters degree in Speech-Language Pathology at UT Austin. Her research interests include metacognition as it relates to language learning in bilinguals with SLI. Alex is assisting the doctoral students with EEG research and is very excited to be a part of the lab!