Ground-Breaking App for Individuals with Word Finding Difficulties

Dallas, TX (March 22, 2012) – Approximately one million people in America (one out of 275 adults) suffer from some form of Aphasia and/or Apraxia. As a result, the majority of these individuals face word finding difficulties, the inability to think of and retrieve the right words. Clinicians have created several evidence-based cueing strategies for word finding. However, it has been difficult to pinpoint a universal approach that is suitable for patients as each individual’s case is different and requires mixed or combined approaches for successful treatment. Therefore, it is essential to have a tool that incorporates each of these approaches in order to effectively help patients with various levels of communication.iName it is the first app to provide patients with a simple, systematic way to retrieve target words depicted in a realistic visual scene and enhanced by the five types of evidence-based cueing strategies. Each target word can be elicited by one or more of the available cues. iName it enables speech therapists to use a combination of the cueing options to meet the needs of a wide range of patients with varying communication levels.Published by Smarty Ears, iName it was created by certified Speech-Language Pathologists, Elizabeth Begley and Mary Pitti to assist individuals with word finding difficulties that are secondary to Aphasia and/or Apraxia. “This app is essential for every SLP who works with people who have Aphasia. The app targets basic functional words that people use on a daily basis. The target words are found in attractive visual displays that are realistic. The user has several cueing methods to choose from when trying to elicit the target word. This app is bound to be your favorite in your collection,” states Mary Pitti, Clinic Program Director and Clinical Assistant Professor in the Department of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology at Ithaca College. iName it includes fifty word finding items that are typically found in the household and around the community. By using the household visual scenes such as the garage, kitchen, bathroom, and living room, patients’ word finding skills will significantly improve. “Clients can select a room in the house and then work with a therapist, spouse, or alone, to name relevant items in the room. While the target item becomes central in the screen, the context of the room is always visible in the background. In addition, the ‘adult look’ of the items and scenes will appeal to older individuals who often reject childlike or cartoon images. This app encourages and reinforces multiple practices both in the therapy setting and at home,” says co-author, Elizabeth Begley of the Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) Clinic at the College Station Medical Center. iName it can be used by speech-language pathologists, family members, and individuals with word finding difficulties. The easy-to-use app is designed for adults, but it is appropriate for all ages. “I am amazed at the number of adult clients who buy iPads and are just looking for appropriate apps to aid in their language recovery.  iName it can be an excellent adjunct to regaining naming competence,” Begley adds. iName it is currently available for $14.99 and can be purchased from the iTunes app store: The app is compatible with the iPad running iOS 4.0 or above. For more information about Smarty Ears or iName it, please visit or email us at [email protected].

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