Differential diagnosis of Word Finding (WF) is necessary to plan strategic and meaningful WF intervention. It is not enough to just indicate that a learner has Word Finding difficulties. SLPs need to answer the diagnostic question, "What is the nature of the learner's WF challenge?" To address this diagnostic question, this eCourse informs the SLP of the following components needed to carry out a differential diagnosis of a learner's WF skills:
This online course is divided into 4 parts and will present Formal and Informal Procedures for the diagnostic assessment of semantic and form based Word Finding (WF) error patterns. Specifically, part 1 will present in single words and discourse contexts characteristics of three semantic and phonological based WF error patterns. Part 2 will highlight a lexical model representing the theoretical underpinnings of semantic/phonological based lexical access difficulties. Part 3 will present the new Test of Word Finding, Third Edition (TWF-3) and part 4 will present informal procedures for the identification of 3 WF error patterns. Offered for 0.25 SLP CEUs – 2.5 Contact Hours.
Course Run Time: 2:47:51
The author of this course is also author of assessment and treatment resources that are mentioned as part of this course. The author will benefit financially from the sale of these products. Presenter financial and non-financial disclosures may be found in the Presenter & Disclosures area. All material in this course is protected by copyright and may not be reproduced in any form without the expressed, written permission of Diane G. German, Ph.D.
Video PowerPoint presentation with author narration & downloadable handout.
Diane J. German, PhD, is a professor at National-Louis University where she holds the Endowed Chair in Special Education created to support her work in word finding. She is an internationally acclaimed author and researcher having published the standard in assessment instruments in word finding. Further, she has published articles, presented technical papers, and taught numerous seminars in the US, Canada, Europe, and Asia.
Financial — Diane German is a presenter of online CE courses sponsored by Northern Speech Services; receives royalties.
Financial — Diane German is the author of tests, texts, and other materials that are related to and mentioned during this online course; she benefits financially from the sale of these products.
Nonfinancial — Diane German has no relevant nonfinancial relationships to disclose.
This program is offered for 0.25 ASHA CEUs (Intermediate Level; Professional Area).
ASHA CEUs: NSS online courses are registered with ASHA and are offered for ASHA CEUs. The number of ASHA CEUs is noted above. Note that 0.1 ASHA CEU = 1 contact hour = equals 1 CEE.
ASHA CE Registry: During the enrollment process, if you select to receive ASHA credit for this course and if you provide your ASHA number, NSS will automatically submit your CEU information to the ASHA CE Registry after successful course completion (80% on post test). This submission happens once per month, during the first week of the month. For example, if you complete your course on November 7th, NSS will submit all November online course CEUs to ASHA during the first week of December. When ASHA inputs the information into their database, they will mark the course as completed on the last day of the month in which it was completed, so November 30th using this example. The certificate of completion available for you to print immediately, however, will reflect the actual completion date, November 7th in this example. Due to ASHA processing procedures please allow 2-3 weeks, from the submission date, for the course to appear on your ASHA transcript.
ASHA CEUs: Attendees must meet at least one of the following conditions in order to be eligible to earn ASHA CEUs:
If an attendee is not an ASHA member or CCC holder but meets any of the above criteria, they may inform the ASHA CE Registry of their eligibility by visiting this site.
Licensing Boards: Most state licensing boards DO accept CEUs earned online (usually classified as home-study credits). Some state boards do, however, place a limit to the number of credits that can be earned via home study/online courses. For the most current information, we suggest that you contact your licensing board or agency to verify acceptance policies and/or any credit limits related to home-study courses prior to registering for this course.
Additional accrediting agencies by which Northern Speech is an approved CE provider:
Course Completion Timeframe:
You have unlimited time to complete our online courses. You may log off and log on as often as you’d like to in order to complete all sections of a course.
However, completion dates are based on Eastern Standard Time. Therefore, if you need your CEUs by a certain date, be sure to complete the course test before 11:59pm EST on that date. For example, if you need CEUs before January 1st, you will need to complete the course test before 11:59pm EST on December 31st.
Access to course materials and content does not expire, even after completing the post test. You may continue to review course material by logging into your NSS account, clicking the My Online Courses tab, and then viewing your desired course.
Certificate of Completion:
On successful completion of the post test (80%), a certificate will be immediately available for download and/or printing. This certificate will include your name, date of completion (based on Eastern Time Zone, USA/Canada), and number of contact hours (CEUs / CEEs). Please note that CEUs are awarded on the date of successful test completion, not the date of course enrollment. Please ensure that you successfully complete the post test prior to any licensure renewal dates.
ASHA CE Registry Submission:
During the enrollment process, if you select to receive ASHA credit for this course and if you provide your ASHA number, NSS will automatically submit your CEU information to the ASHA CE Registry after successful course completion (80% on post test). This submission happens once per month, during the first week of the month. For example, if you complete your course on November 7th, NSS will submit all November online course CEUs to ASHA during the first week of December. When ASHA inputs the information into their database, they will mark the course as completed on the last day of the month in which it was completed, so November 30th using this example. The certificate of completion available for you to print immediately, however, will reflect the actual completion date, November 7th in this example. Due to ASHA processing procedures please allow 2-3 weeks, from the submission date, for the course to appear on your ASHA transcript.
Purchase orders are NOT accepted when registering for online courses. Payment must be made online in the form of a credit or debit card payment.
What is an Online Course?
Our Online Courses consist of video, audio, and/or text content and are offered for ASHA CEUs. Unlike a webinar, which requires participants to be logged on and at a computer at specific times, our Online Courses are available to you at any time, from any device, via your NorthernSpeech.com online account. You may work at your own pace and start and stop your course as you wish. Your course will conclude with a short post test. On successful completion of the post test (>80%), a printable certificate of completion is presented to you.
Northern Speech is an ASHA CE Provider and our online courses are registered with ASHA and offered for ASHA CEUs. Please note that successful completion of the online post test is required prior to the awarding of CEUs. Please contact your state licensing board for acceptance policies related to CEUs earned online.
Registering for an online course:
You may browse all online courses by clicking the Continuing Education tab above, then Online Courses. Once you find a course, click Enroll Now, and you will be asked to either log into your existing Northern Speech account or create a new online account. Once you’ve entered your account information and provided your credit card payment, your course will be immediately available to you.
Accessing your purchased course or returning to a purchased course:
You will be able to access your online course by logging into your Northern Speech account and then clicking the My Online Courses tab on your profile screen. Click the course you would like to start or to resume. From there, proceed through the course sections until you are ready to complete the post test. You do not have to complete your course all at once. You may log on and off as you wish.
Each online course concludes with a post test consisting of multiple choice or true & false questions. Scores of 80% or greater are required for successful course completion and awarding of CEUs. You may revisit course materials and retest as needed to achieve a passing score.
Number of CEUs offered:
We offer courses from 1 to 21 contact hours. Each course will note the number of CEUs offered. Please note that 0.1 CEU = 1 contact hour = 1 CEE.
State licensing boards and online CEUs:
NSS is an ASHA CE Provider and most state licensing boards DO accept ASHA CEUs earned online (usually classified as home-study credits). Some boards do, however, place a limit to the number of CEUs that can be earned via home study/online courses. For the most current information, we suggest that you contact your licensing board or agency to verify acceptance policies and/or any CEU limits related to home-study courses prior to enrolling in an online course.
Our course formats include: text, audio, video, and PowerPoint with author narration. Each course will note the format on the course description page.
Most of our online courses provide a link to download the accompanying handout as a PDF file.
Groups of 3 or more are eligible for a 20% discount on each registration on most of our online courses. To receive this discount, registrations need to be processed together via the "Group Rates" tab on the Online Course of your choice.
For our online courses to function best, we recommend that you update your computer to include the newest version of your Internet browser (Safari, Chrome, Firefox, Edge, Internet Explorer, etc.) and newest version of your computer's operating system. Also a high-speed Internet connection is recommended (cable or DSL). Speakers or headphones will be required for many of our courses as many contain audio components.
Course Cancellation Policy:
A purchased online course can be exchanged, refunded, or transferred to another individual if contact is made with NSS (via phone or email) within 30 days of purchase and the course materials have not been viewed or downloaded.
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"This course helped me make connections on where my student's specific problem lie. Learning how to clearly identify a word retrieval problem was most beneficial." – N.P. (Apr. 2020)
"I enjoyed learning more about the TWF3 and how it is administered. I liked the video case studies and examples of WF errors. I was a bit confused about the charts presented but appreciated the flow chart the most. I wish she had discussed some type of intervention strategies." – R.B. (Apr. 2020)
"The differential diagnosis of word finding types and Lexical model was most beneficial." – S.L. (Feb. 2020)
"I appreciated differentiating the 3 types of WF errors as well as its organization and how it went systematically through the information." – D.U. (Jan. 2020)
"It is helpful to have a means of applying a theoretical model to a specific area of clinical practice. I like that the course is focused and simply structured." – G.R. (Dec. 2019)
"All of this was beneficial, and I will definitely use this information in testing for differential diagnosis and was thrilled to have the part on oral reading. Good pace of lectures, very understandable." – B.H. (Nov. 2019)
"I appreciated differentiating articulation / motor-planning difficulties versus word-finding difficulties." – K.V. (Oct. 2019)
"I am currently working with a client demonstrating word finding problems and this information was extremely helpful in my differential diagnosis. I particularly liked the flow chart in the last slide, which will directly aid in therapy." – K.H. (Sept. 2019)
"I will look differently at the children who seem to have difficulty with pronouncing multi-syllabic words, yet do not appear to be searching for his words in conversation. The organization of the information was clear, and I appreciated all of the visuals." – L.S. (Sept. 2019)
"Going over the breakdown of where WF difficulties occur was really useful." – M.N.T. (Aug. 2019)
"All of it was helpful. I liked the information presented." – S.T. (Aug. 2019)
"Learning to differentiate errors in word-finding responses was most beneficial. Thorough presentation!" – E.E. (July 2019)
"I appreciated going over the steps to informal assessment of Word Retrieval as well as the clarity and review of the course." – G.G. (May 2019)
"I liked that there were lots of examples of how to differentially diagnose word-finding difficulties." – E.B. (Mar. 2019)
"It was most helpful to understand how to differentiate between word finding error patterns in a much clearer way - what this indicates about where the breakdown in the process is occurring - and how this may manifest in the classroom and when reading." – L.M. (Feb. 2019)
"The information was thorough and presented in a manner that was easy to understand and follow." – D.S. (Jan. 2019)
"The information regarding where word finding errors are likely originating from in the retrieval process was most useful. Good explanation of how to use the TWF. However, it would have been nice to have a few treatment ideas based on the different error patterns assessed. The was just very dry & a bit boring. Seems it could have used a little more pep or enthusiasm from Ms. German." – S.C. (Dec. 2018)
"The entire topic was new to me. I was fascinated by the ability to examine word finding in detail rather than just commenting "he has word finding difficulties." I loved the ability to use informal observation to determine the nature of the word finding." – L.S. (Dec. 2018)
"Differentiating the types of word finding problems was most helpful. I did not realize there were different types." – S.A. (Nov. 2018)
"I liked the specific details related to the differential diagnosis." – J.A. (Sept. 2018)
"The content presented will be quite helpful to SLPs working to differentiate speech sound disorder from, or in concert with language difficulties in young children and adolescents." – Y. H. (Aug. 2018)
"This course was extremely helpful In learning more about the research behind the TWF." – L.C. (Aug. 2018)
"A very well-done presentation on, what I feel, is a very difficult concept... Should be part of graduate school coursework!! Great information, clear organization, and excellent examples. THANK YOU!" – S.S. (Jul. 2018)
"I liked the breakdown of the 2 charts as well as the examples." – M.T. (Feb. 2018)
"The discussions on diagnosing different types of WR difficulties and writing reports that are specific to the child were most beneficial. I liked the organization of the course information." – I.B. (Dec. 2017)
"I liked the flow charts and very specific examples." – E.M. (Dec. 2017)
"I thought this was an excellent course. The information presented very well, and the visuals were exceptional." – E.C. (Oct. 2017)
"I enjoyed learning about the theoretical construct and levels of error patterns on which the TWF-3 is based." – L.T. (Aug. 2017)
"The differential diagnosis of different levels of word finding problems was most beneficial. The graphs were helpful as were the videos." – K.L. (July 2017)
"I have many students with potential word finding difficulties. This topic will assist me in performing a diagnosis." – J.M. (May 2017)
"The knowledge of the three different patterns when teachers and parents bring up 'word finding' difficulties and the demonstration videos were especially helpful." – T.O. (Apr. 2017)
"I found the model, evidence-based studies, and TWF all very beneficial. The presentation as a whole was excellent." – S.T. (Jan. 2017)
"As an evaluator of preschool children, I am more focused on their word finding as opposed to delayed expressive vocabulary development. I found this course good & easy to understand." – J.M. (Dec. 2016)
"I like the framework given for determining word finding vs receptive language problem. The video examples were very helpful. I had hoped more time would be focused on intervention." – A.S. (Nov. 2016)
"I found the examples of student responses and how they were classified by the type of WF error to be very helpful." – K.K. (Sept. 2016)
"I enjoyed the differential diagnosis of word finding errors. I liked the real-life application of case studies." – M.G. (Aug. 2016)
"I appreciated her demonstrating the step-by-step process for differential diagnosis of word-finding difficulties. The discussion of case studies was helpful." – E.B. (Aug. 2016)
"All of it was very interesting. It really made me think more about the answers students give for certain items." – L.B. (Aug. 2016)
"I found the detailed description of the 3 different WF error patterns most interesting and beneficial as a school-based SLP." – M.R. (Aug. 2016)
"I did not know word finding difficulties could be broken down with such complexity. I feel that I can use the strategies that were talked about in the videos to informally and formally evaluate students on my caseload." – B.G. (July 2016)
"I found the topic as a whole beneficial to my daily practice. I liked that I became more familiar with the TWF-3." – A.S. (July 2016)
"I have not really learned about word finding problems and this was a good introduction to the topic. By the end, I feel confident that I understand the terminology and could add it to my own lexicon. I was hoping to get even more in-depth and learn about goal writing and treatment, though." – S.P. (July 2016)
"I was only briefly familiar with the Test of Word Finding and found this to be a great way to gain appreciation for the test and what insights I would gain from giving it. I would like more information on therapy ideas and writing IEP goals to go with this." – K.G. (June 2016)
"I learned a lot. Word finding is tricky and this really helped to improve my understanding and knowledge." – R.R. (June 2016)
"The information was extremely organized and thorough. She included video examples and a lot of repetition of terms. She led us through the diagnostic process multiple times so that I feel comfortable doing this on my own." – M.W. (June 2016)
"I am looking forward to using the TOWF-3 to differentiate the types of word difficulties that my students may have. This will help focus treatment based on the error patterns identified in the assessment. I loved the video examples. Very thorough presentation of the topic!" – L.K. (June 2016)
"I appreciated the 3 types of word finding errors and how to do differential diagnosis." – C.B. (May 2016)
"The discussion on how oral reading can be negatively impacted by word finding difficulty was really helpful. I liked the speaker's clear and slower rate of speech and the diagrams/visuals." – R.G. (May 2016)
"I found the three word finding error patterns and the charts to be the most beneficial for my daily practice. I liked that the information was explained in detail, case studies were analyzed and compared to charted learned materials and then we learned how the test connected to the learned materials. I thought a little bit of carrying over the learned material and testing results into therapy goals and strategies would have been touched on." – E.S. (May 2016)
"I liked scoring the test and the theoretical concepts behind the test's construction. Also, the videos and examples were very helpful." – S.R. (May 2016)
"I appreciated the different s/s of word finding problems. I liked the videos and case studies." – C.H. (Apr. 2016)
"The clearly and distinctly differentiated types of word finding along with video clips of students demonstrating those specific error patterns were most beneficial. I liked the incorporated theoretical research to support assertions about assessment protocol." – S.B. (Mar. 2016)
"This webinar provides in-depth information about word finding difficulties. The instructor is very knowledgeable on this topic and presents the information in a clear manner." – A.M. (Feb. 2016)