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by Liliana Diaz
February 25, 2021
We already know that bilingualism is not static and it exists on a continuum in which one's proficiency is constantly changing over time. In some cases, bilingual people might be more dominant in one language when compared to the other (this is perfectly normal). As speech language pathologists, we need to be able to determine exactly where our bilingual student falls on the bilingual continuum by measuring the his/her language dominance in both languages. Why is this important and how do we do this you may ask? I will answer your questions down below:
The Importance of Measuring Language Experience & Dominance
How do I Measure a Bilingual Student's Language Experience & Dominance in Both Languages?
The best way to measure a bilingual student's language experience and dominance in both languages is by collecting an in-depth language history. The language history will allow you to gain an understanding of the student's use and exposure of both languages. You can obtain an exact percentage of the student's language use and exposure in both languages by determining who the child lives with, their relationship to the child, the languages spoken and heard by the child each hour of the day. Once you have all the information over a week's span, you can calculate the average percentage of use and exposure of both languages. There is an exact formula that you can follow to obtain the percentages. I created a visual chart, formula document with step-by-step instructions and data organization chart which is available for free download in the freebie library (click here for formula and chart). It will walk you through exactly through the formula. Once you have this information, you will be able to see exactly where your student falls on the continuum and mention it in your report.
Based on the information, you should be able to figure out whether your student is a functional monolingual English (FME), functional monolingual other (FMO), bilingual English Dominant (BED), balanced bilingual (BL), bilingual other dominant (BOD), or functional monolingual other (FMO). Remember, a bilingual evaluation is always needed for BED, BL, and BOD students. So where do your students fall on the continuum?
November 04, 2022
I will send you an email directly. However, ensure that you are calculating the time from the moment the student wakes up to the moment the student goes to bed. For example, the student’s day might look like from 7AM to 8PM.
So I’m trying to do the math and maybe I’m doing something wrong. 80% of 168 comes out to 134.4 hours. So if I’m understanding right, they have to speak (or hear) a language 134.4 hours or 19.2 hrs out of each day to be FME or FMO. Where is sleep in this? Who talks for that many hours? Is this hours that they “may” talk or have the opportunity to talk because I don’t know anyone who talks for 19 hrs. This seems an impossible standard to meet and everyone would fall in the needing bilingual evaluation category. Do you add the hours for talking and hearing together then divide it? Please help.
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by Liliana Diaz
January 12, 2023
Perhaps you recently got assigned to a new school or site that consists of a large bilingual and/or multilingual caseload, and perhaps you're not bilingual. Not speaking the student's language can be quite overwhelming and stressful (trust me, I've been there!). I know the feeling of not quite knowing where to start in intervention, or not knowing how to support your students. Well luckily, bilingual SLP, Ingrid Owens-Gonzalez has some important tips to share with all SLPs. Here are 3 things Monolingual SLPs can do to support bilingual populations today.
by Liliana Diaz
December 12, 2022
Finding good CEUs can be difficult especially when you want to find relevant courses that are affordable and applicable to your current job setting. If you are coming towards the end of your ASHA CEU cycle, or if you simply want to learn more about best practices when working with culturally and linguistically diverse students then keep reading because I have compiled a list of great CEU courses/providers that every bilingual (& monolingual) SLP should look into.
by Liliana Diaz
August 31, 2022
Welcome! I am Bilingual Speechie and this is my speech therapy blog! Here you will find bilingual (English & Spanish) resources & activities for speech language therapy! I am here to make the lives of all bilingual SLPs easier!
My name is Liliana Diaz-Vazquez and I obtained my bachelor’s degree in communication disorders in 2012 and my master’s degree in speech language pathology at Saint Xavier University in 2014.
I am a certified, licensed bilingual speech language pathologist (SLP) currently practicing in Chicago, Illinois. I have a passion with working with the bilingual population! I specialize in pediatrics with children ranging in ages from 1-18 years old and I predominantly serve bilingual and predominately Spanish-speaking students in general education programs, blended preschool programs and low-incidence programs.
I currently work full time in the public-school setting and part time in early intervention. I also run my own blog and create all sorts of bilingual resources/activities which I use with my own clients. I have extensive experience treating and evaluating a variety of disorders. I have worked with children with autism, Down syndrome, cognitive impairments, learning disabilities, apraxia, fluency disorders, language disorders and developmental delays.
My areas of expertise include augmentative/alternative communication (AAC), bilingual language development and the assessment and treatment of language delays/disorders in bilingual children.
I am a certified member of the American Speech-Language and Hearing Association (ASHA) since 2014, a member of the Illinois Speech and Hearing Association (ISHA) since 2014 and maintain licensure in the state of Illinois.
Aside from working with families and children, I am a part time foodie! Follow me on social media to check out all my food adventures within Chicago!