Auditory Processing Disorder (APD)

What is APD?

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Children with APD have difficulty understanding speech in noisy environments, following directions, and discriminating between speech sounds.  In school, children with APD may have difficulty with spelling, reading, and understanding information presented verbally in the classroom. A multidisciplinary team approach is critical to fully assess and understand the cluster of problems exhibited by children with APD. And thus, a teacher or educational therapist may shed light on academic difficulties; a psychologist may evaluate cognitive functioning in a variety of different areas; a speech-language pathologist will measure receptive and expressive language skills and auditory comprehension skills however only a trained audiologists can conduct the tests needed to make a diagnosis of of APD.

The SLP’s Role in the Assessment and Treatment of APD

Speech Language Pathologists can help kids with auditory processing difficulties in the following ways:

  • Improve perception and production of individual sounds (phonemes) in words, which can help with reading skills
  • Increase sound blending and segmenting skills
  • Teach rhyming skills
  • Develop active listening skills, such as asking a person to repeat directions
  • Use language appropriately in social situations



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