Mining the 2004 ASHA Convention Abstracts

By Judith Maginnis Kuster

The bad news: the 2004 ASHA convention and its wonderful learning opportunities for nearly 12,000 people attendees is over. The good news: the 2004 ASHA convention is NOT completely over, and for the 90,000 ASHA members who were unable to be in Philadelphia there are over 750 Convention handouts freely available online ( Even if you attended the convention but missed a particular session, you still have access to its information.

Handouts, posters and PowerPoint presentations are available in various formats - Adobe Acrobat, Word, and PowerPoint. Some larger files are "zipped," (compressed into smaller, more quickly downloaded files). To access the handouts, you may have to download extra (free) software. The following have become pretty standard tools and may already be installed.:

The ASHA site includes a chart that estimates download time based on file size and type of internet connection. If you are downloading through a slow modem (phone connection) be sure no one picks up an extension or you'll have to restart what may be a long download time. For example, if you are connecting through a modem that downloads at 56 Kbps (kilobits per second) a file that is labeled as 5MB will take over 12 minutes to download. The same file will take 27 seconds if you have a T1 connection.

As you explore, be sure to scroll down to the last section - the three hour short courses. Many provide treatment ideas including:

There is more good news, although it will take more effort to find the treasures buried there. Many handouts from the 2002 and 2003 ASHA convention presentations are also online. For handouts from the 2002 convention, you must join the Community of Science (COS) site (it is free). Go to" and then find the abstract of the session you are interested in. Some of the abstracts have handouts. For example, the Justine Joan Sheppard et al. abstract on "SLPS in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit" has their 80 slide PPT attached and SC18, a "Stuttering Master Class: Advanced Training--School-Age Stuttering Therapy" includes a 52 slide PPT.

The 2003 convention handouts are freely available to anyone, but are listed by session number, not title, so you'll need a Convention book to find what you are looking for in a timely manner. ( I explored a few of the shortcourse handouts and found several gems, including:

After you have finished mining the ASHA convention handouts, another site to explore, the Council of Academic Programs in Communication Sciences and Disorders, features annual conference proceedings from1997 through 2004, including outlines and entire speeches as well as PPTs presented. (
Judith Kuster is in the department of speech, hearing, and rehabilitation services at Minnesota State University, Mankato. Contact her by email at All of Kuster’s Internet columns are on the ASHA Web site in HTML format with active links, although URLs change and there is no guarantee that links from previous articles are still functional.

Kuster, JM, Mining The 2004 ASHA Convention Abstracts, ASHA Leader, December 14, 2004, p. 26