Debra Nathan, M.A., CCC
Director, Scottish Rite Childhood
Language Disorders Center
Los Angeles, California

Children can learn better communication by seeing an image of their speech via IMIDAC technology.

The Los Angeles Scottish Rite Childhood Language Disorders Center is the recipient of a most interesting and innovative donation. The full-range motion color video system (IMIDAC) created by Bro. Raymond C. Rothman, 32, and Christopher J. Lewis, provides children enrolled in speech therapy with greater awareness of their communication skills. IMIDAC technology, using a video and computer interface, enables students to film short clips of their speech and to play them back immediately. Teachers/therapists have the option of prerecording sample lessons for student viewing. After students record their attempt at a particular skill or sound, they and the speech pathologist view both recordings for comparison on the video screen.

The children of the Los Angeles Scottish Rite Childhood Language Disorders Center have benefitted from the IMIDAC in a variety of ways. Preschoolers love seeing themselves on “TV” and are very motivated to practice speech skills. Elementary school children appreciate the feedback the IMIDAC offers and learn to evaluate their own speech production, thereby increasing their self-awareness for communication skills. Adolescents often require less time in speech therapy since the IMIDAC device makes them immediately aware of specific undesirable speech behaviors.

In articulation, fluency, language, and voice therapy, the most challenging aspect is carryover, the ability to take the skill the child has learned in therapy and to use it in his or her everyday speech. IMIDAC is an effective tool in bridging this gap.