Memphis Speech and Hearing Center

Memphis Speech and Hearing Center


A gorgeous day to celebrate Memphis Speech and Hearing Center!
Memphis Speech and Hearing Center is hosting an Intensive Summer Reading Program for elementary school-aged children who are struggling with reading and writing. If you are interested, please click the link below for more information about the program and registration process.
If you are looking to make an appointment please go to Memphis Speech and Hearing Center or call 901-678-2009

University-based clinic for language, speech, & hearing healthcare. MSHC is the clinical training lo

The Memphis Speech and Hearing Center (MSHC) was established in 1947 by the Board of Directors of The Memphis Speech and Hearing Center, Inc. to provide a full range of clinical services to individuals with communication disorders. Since 1967, the Center has been affiliated with the University of Memphis, and is the site of the UofM's School of Communication Sciences and Disorders. State-of-the-ar

Operating as usual


Bluff City Speech Pathology
is co-owned by University of Memphis alumna Lydia Perkins, M.A. CCC-SLP, BCS-S, and Sydnee McCoy, M.S. CCC-SLP, graduate of the University of Mississippi. Based out of Collierville, TN, the practice provides online services, home visits, and clinical education and training. “We have worked together for a long time in the acute care setting, and wanted to expand our clinical experience beyond that,” Perkins said.

Services for clients include diagnostics and treatment for a range of acquired speech and language disorders, including aphasia, dysarthria, and apraxia of speech, as well as for cognitive impairment, dysphagia, and pediatric feeding disorders.

Bluff City Speech also invests in their fellow clinicians by providing clinical education and training in dysphagia. “Initially, we set out to operate in the private practice setting, part time, for a change of pace, but are now focusing more on providing virtual services with a possible platform for dysphagia education with FEES & MBS case studies (still in the planning stages).” Currently, Bluff City offers in-person, supervised FEES passes for certification, as well as virtual consultation and coaching sessions for new clinicians.


Just a few weeks ago, Dr. Oller and colleagues published an article, "S*x differences in infant vocalization and the origin of language," in iScience, an interdisciplinary journal that provides open access to significant scientific research.

Oller, D.K., Gilkerson, J., Richards, J.A., Hannon, S., Griebel, U., Bowman, D.D., Brown, J.A., Yoo, H., Warren, S.F. (2023). S*x differences in infant vocalization and the origin of language. iScience, vol. 26(6).

For an overview of the findings in context, check out this news article: 08/04/2023

Changes ahead for MSHC! We are changing our operational systems for scheduling, record keeping, and billing. It's exciting!
Please note that August will be a transition time. Patients/clients will not be scheduled for the fall semester until after labor day.

Please bear with us as we continue to find better ways to provide care to the community. We will be posting updates on our website regularly: 8/3/2023: MSHC will continue to serve all traditional Medicare and Medicaid patients (including TennCare) as well as those who pay out of pocket without interruption. For those with commercial insurance, the clinicians will be out of network until we can get them reinstated. This includes any commer...

Photos from Down Syndrome Association of Memphis & the Mid-South's post 07/19/2023
How American schools fail kids with dyslexia 06/18/2023

Reading is amazing. Learning a written "code" allows us to access language with our eyes. This skill does not come naturally. In order to decode words, new connections have to be built between the visual system and the language centers in the brain.

Kids learning to read need explicit instruction and lots of practice to connect individual speech sounds to letters, then blend these sounds into words. After decoding a word enough times, the brain processes it very rapidly. If someone has difficulty learning this foundational skill of rapid decoding, this undercuts success in all areas of reading. This is often the case for students with dyslexia.

To learn more, check out this fascinating podcast from APM Reports: "Hard to Read:
How American schools fail kids with dyslexia."

How American schools fail kids with dyslexia There are proven ways to help people with dyslexia learn to read, and a federal law that's supposed to ensure schools provide kids with help. But across the country, public schools are denying children proper treatment and often failing to identify them with dyslexia in the first place.


Providing health information in clear, plain language is vital to health outcomes. As communication professionals, SLPs and audiologists can help clients by creating clear language and auditory environments that promote understanding.

Check out this ASHA article for basic tips and resources for developing plain language materials!

For more resources, here is a central page with links to health literacy resources, organized by topic:


“It’s not that autistic people lack empathy. Rather, their different neurotypes and experiences may make it harder for nonautisic people to understand them—and vice versa.”

Check out this excellent article, “Revealing the Double Empathy Problem,” where mom and SLP Laura DeThorne shares how knowing her autistic son changed her perspective on autism. It is well worth the read!


Happy Pride Month!
Did you know that speech-language pathologists play an important role in gender-affirming healthcare?
Learn more about our scope of practice on ASHA's practice portal. 🏳️‍🌈🗣
Check out MSHC's gender affirming voice program:


According to the Alzheimer’s Association, “Dementia is a general term for loss of memory, language, problem-solving and other thinking abilities that are severe enough to interfere with daily life. Alzheimer's is the most common cause of dementia.” Other diseases that cause dementia include Lewy body dementia, multiple small strokes, frontotemporal lobar degeneration, Parkinson’s disease, and Huntington’s disease.

Dementia affects many aspects of daily living, including language and communication. Communication involves attention, memory, and processing of language and non-verbal cues, all of which may be impaired in dementia. Specific language difficulties can include problems with finding words and combining them meaningfully. An SLP may work with an individual with dementia on language and other skills like attention, memory, problem-solving, and higher-level cognitive skills to support independence and quality of life.

An important way SLPs may help people with dementia is by coaching family members on how to communicate well with their loved one. These 5 communication tips are a helpful starting place for friends, family, and caregivers of people with dementia.

To learn more, check out these online resources:

Dementia | ASHA

Dementia and language | Alzheimer’s Society -start

Enhance your communication with people living with dementia


Paul Simon, we get it. Sudden can be devastating at any age. Some of us have been there, too...and is here to help you & anyone dealing with !


Right hemisphere brain damage (RHD) occurs when a stroke, tumor, infection, or traumatic brain injury damages the right side of the brain. The right side of the brain controls thinking skills that are important in everyday life and communication, including attention, memory, reasoning, and problem solving (American Speech-Language-Hearing Association).

Problems with attention, organization, and memory can also affect communication. For example, a person with RHD may not focus well during a conversation; they may have trouble planning out a story or giving directions; they may not remember information that is important for the conversation.

The damage to the right side of the brain can also cause difficulties with movement and perception, especially on the left side of the body. For example, a person with RHD may have left-side neglect, where they do not see people or things on their left side.

Communication remains essential for everyday activities and interpersonal connection. These five tips offer a starting point for communicating effectively with people with RHD. See the resources below for more information.

Right Hemisphere Brain Damage -



“The Disability Visibility Project is an online community dedicated to creating, sharing, and amplifying disability media and culture.”

The project is an open collection of essays and other artistic expressions from disabled people. Listening to each other's stories is an important first step to forming understanding and uplifting relationships between people who are different from one another. Take some time to explore the collection!

If you prefer to listen, here is the Disability Visibility Podcast:


With our voice, we communicate not just words, but also our emotions, opinions, identity, and more. Voice disorders bring unique challenges because voice is an important part of a person’s identity.

“Your vocal folds are inside your larynx, or voice box. When you talk, air moves from your lungs through the vocal folds to your mouth. The vocal folds vibrate to produce sound. Anything that makes it harder for the vocal folds to vibrate can cause a voice problem.” (American Speech-Language-Hearing Association)

Voice disorders may result from damage to the vocal fold tissue. Chronic cough, for example, irritates the vocal folds. Another example is nodules or polyps, benign (non-cancerous) growths that result from overuse of the voice.

Other voice disorders result from problems with the nervous system that controls the vocal folds. In spasmodic dysphonia, the muscles in the vocal folds spasm, producing a jerky or hoarse sounding voice. The vocal folds may work well for other functions, like swallowing and coughing, but not for speaking. According to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, "Your voice may sound jerky, shaky, hoarse, or tight. You may have times when you cannot make any sounds at all. You may also have times when your voice sounds normal.” (ASHA)

People with voice disorders, like everyone, want to connect and communicate. When talking with someone with a voice disorder, keep these three tips in mind. See the links to learn more about voice disorders and how you can best support an acquaintance or loved one who has a voice disorder.

How Does the Human Body Produce Voice and Speech?

Voice | ASHA

Share Your Voice: Gwen - Living with Spasmodic Dysphonia

Voice Therapy Helps Teacher Return to Singing | Duke Health


Did you know hearing loss affects people of all ages and backgrounds? If you're experiencing hearing loss, talk to your doctor or an audiologist!

Communication is important to our everyday lives. Using good communication strategies when you or someone you know has hearing loss can help improve overall communication. To learn more about hearing loss and effective strategies or more information, see the resources below.

Journey of Sound to the Brain | NIH

Hearing Loss | ASHA

Communication tips for talking to people with hearing loss


Throughout recovery, family and friends need to partner with their loved one with aphasia, adjusting their own habits to achieve effective, supportive communication.

Learn more:
Aphasia | ASHA

How to communicate with someone with Wernicke's aphasia

Randy's aphasia - "it's a long journey, but I will push on"

Fluent (Wernicke's) Aphasia


Communication differences can cause misunderstanding between autistic and neurotypical people. Both communication partners need to respect the other’s different values, communication, and way of thinking.

Autism and Communication in Adults

Photos from Memphis Speech and Hearing Center's post 04/23/2023

Gorgeous day to celebrate and support MSHC. Thanks to all who showed up and to all who donated to keep the Client Assistance Program going strong.


The 2nd Annual MSHC Virtual 5K is happening!
This Saturday we celebrate the culmination of the event. If you haven't signed up, please use the code or link. If you can't join us, please consider a donation.
Proceeds go to support the Client Assistance Program, which can help patients receive the services and devices they need to communicate with confidence!


Makes plans to join CSD alumna, Janine Peca, for her wonderful training on working with individuals on the autism spectrum. CEUs available. Email [email protected] to register and for more information.


Every year on April 16, voice health professionals worldwide recognize World Voice Day. In honor of the day, CSD’s resident voice expert, Dr. Miriam van Mersbergen has been talking to experts in other countries to learn about desirable traits in voices and what makes a voice 'beautiful' in different cultures. Over the next few weeks, we plan to share details of each discussion, so watch this space. We'll be hearing from:

- a South African Choral academic,
- a speech language pathologist and voice trainer from Brazil and
- a voice researcher from India


CSD is pleased to announce that Charles Ratcliff will be presenting at the upcoming NEDxStudents Research Forum, which takes place Wednesday, April 5th, and Thursday, April 6th from 3-5 p.m. in the 2nd Floor Commons of Ned R. McWherter Library.

Charles’ presentation, which is entitled Ask yourself: An Introduction to Self-Directed Speech, the Neglected Cognitive Tool, will take place at 3pm on Wednesday April 5th. His talk describes self-directed speech as “an instrument for personal improvement in areas such as self-directed learning, emotion regulation, and social communication” and is based on research which he has done in CSD’s Voice, Emotion, and Cognition lab.

For more information about the NEDxStudents Research Forum, follow this link to their website:

Head and Neck Cancer 03/21/2023


Head and neck cancer (HNC) involve tumors in the nasal cavity, mouth (including the tongue, lips and jaw), throat or larynx. Because of their location, treatment of these cancers has serious impacts on speech, voice and swallowing.

Post-surgery and/or radiation, the mechanisms responsible for swallowing may be damaged. Swallowed food or liquid might pass into to the trachea (windpipe) and to the lungs, leading to aspiration and possibly pneumonia. SLPs play a vital role in making sure that the patient gets adequate nutrition and hydration while avoiding aspiration.

Voice and speech may also be affected by cancer treatment. In the most severe case, the larynx (voice box) may be completely removed. In this case, the SLP will work with the patient on speaking without a larynx, for example using a prosthesis. Other voice rehabilitation may involve learning to coordinate breath and voicing in the most efficient way, or other techniques for restoring voice function through exercises and strategies.

The SLP gives vital support to HNC patients as they work to regain quality of life by restoring control over some of life’s most fundamental tasks – eating, drinking and communicating.

Further Reading: ASHA’s page on the role of SLPs in HNC

Head and Neck Cancer Head and neck cancer includes malignant tumors that most commonly arise from the moist squamous cell mucosa or lining of the head and neck regions.


Here is some updated information on our next Aphasia Boot Camp.

Treating Hearing Loss May Lower Dementia Risk 03/08/2023

Treating Hearing Loss May Lower Dementia Risk Hearing aid use was associated with a 32% lower prevalence of dementia in people with moderate to severe hearing loss, according to research from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. 


Congratulations to our very own Dr. Kimbrough Oller and Dr. Irena Lasiecka, who have been elected to the 2022 class of The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), becoming the first UofM faculty members to receive one of the most distinguished honors within the scientific community!

For more on this honor ➡️


MSHC will be closed on 2/1/2023.
Stay safe and warm!


MSHC is closed today 1/31/23.

Julie Washington’s Quest to Get Schools to Respect African-American English 01/20/2023

Interested in the issues, ideas, emotions, and opportunities involved in conversations about code-switching? This 2018 article in The Atlantic is worth the read. Dr. Julie Washington, PhD CCC-SLP, researches code-switching, calling for respect for nonstandard dialects and the ability to shift between dialects.

Julie Washington’s Quest to Get Schools to Respect African-American English The speech pathologist believes that helping kids switch seamlessly between dialects is a key to their success.

National Winter Sports Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) Awareness | Patient Care 01/20/2023

Winter sports are a great way to stay active in the cold months, and while we tend to think of snow as soft and forgiving, snowboarding, skiing and ice skating actually account for a large proportion of head injuries from sports. Although we don’t get a lot of snow in Memphis, icy days can be a real hazard, so this is a good time to be aware of how important it is to protect your dome, and the valuable brain that sits inside it. Whatever winter activities you are participating in, be cautious, and wear a helmet for any high-speed or high-impact sports, and be aware of the signs of concussion.

National Winter Sports Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) Awareness | Patient Care Winter brings winter sports, which bring the risk of traumatic brain injury (TBI). So, before your young athlete hits the slopes or ice rink, make sure you know what a TBI looks like.


In the recently released 2022 UofM President's Report, audiology student Carley Halley was featured in her rotation through the MSHC vestibular clinic, supervised by Dr. Eileen Smith.
See the full issue here:


What is Tummy Time?
Tummy Time is one of baby’s first exercises—and the most important!
Tummy Time is the period during the day your baby spends awake and on their stomach. It is a crucial exercise for baby’s motor, visual, and sensory development.
Baby can begin Tummy Time as a newborn. They can continue to do Tummy Time throughout their first year.


Families and friends of young children, now is a good time to start a daily habit of reading aloud! Due to the importance of reading aloud, the Read Aloud 15 MINUTES National Campaign encourages parents and caregivers to read aloud to children at least 15 minutes a day starting at birth! Check out their website for more information and resources, like great book recommendations for different ages.

Want your school to be the top-listed School/college in Memphis?

Click here to claim your Sponsored Listing.


The Memphis Speech and Hearing Center (MSHC) was established in 1947 by the Board of Directors of The Memphis Speech and Hearing Center, Inc. to provide a full range of clinical services to individuals with communication disorders. Since 1967, the Center has been affiliated with the University of Memphis, and is the site of the UofM's School of Communication Sciences and Disorders. State-of-the-art research laboratories and a graduate education program, combined with the Center's well-respected clinical program, make it one of the premiere speech and hearing facilities in the Mid-South.

The Center's professional staff provides speech, language, and hearing evaluations and offers treatment programs tailored to individual needs. A wide array of diagnostic equipment and materials makes it possible to evaluate communication problems experienced by clients of any age, from infants to adults. Based on evaluation results, clinicians work with clients, parents, and families to develop appropriate, functional treatment plans.




4055 N Park Loop
Memphis, TN

Opening Hours

Monday 8am - 4:30pm
Tuesday 8am - 4:30pm
Wednesday 8am - 4:30pm
Thursday 8am - 4:30pm
Friday 8am - 4:30pm
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