CE Introduction Why doesn’t my client make eye contact or ask me questions? Does my client’s communication pattern indicate a language disorder or is what I’m observing just a language difference? How do I address my client’s accent? None of these questions are new for clinicians, but such questions are being asked ... Introduction
Introduction  |   March 2012
CE Introduction
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Nidhi Mahendra
    California State University East Bay, Hayward, CA
  • Yasmeen Faroqi-Shah
    University of Maryland, College Park, MD
  • © 2012 American Speech-Language-Hearing Association
Article Information
Cultural & Linguistic Diversity / Language Disorders
Introduction   |   March 2012
CE Introduction
SIG 14 Perspectives on Communication Disorders and Sciences in Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CLD) Populations, March 2012, Vol. 19, 4-5. doi:10.1044/cds19.1.4
SIG 14 Perspectives on Communication Disorders and Sciences in Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CLD) Populations, March 2012, Vol. 19, 4-5. doi:10.1044/cds19.1.4
Why doesn’t my client make eye contact or ask me questions? Does my client’s communication pattern indicate a language disorder or is what I’m observing just a language difference? How do I address my client’s accent? None of these questions are new for clinicians, but such questions are being asked much more frequently in current settings due to the rapidly increasing demographic diversity in the United States. The most recent census data attest to a population composition with vast cultural, ethnic, linguistic, and socioeconomic heterogeneity. These shifting demographics directly translate into diverse clients with varying needs and present practitioners with new challenges and opportunities—and the vital task of nurturing this diversity. Surveys indicate that most speech-language pathologists consider themselves to be inadequately prepared to handle cultural and linguistic diversity in client care (Centeno, 2009). A significant step toward meeting these emergent needs of cultural competence is educating oneself about the unique characteristics of different sociocultural groups. The expectation is that this increased awareness will propel us forward on the path to culturally competent and ethical service delivery. In this issue of Perspectives on Communication Disorders and Sciences in Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CLD) Populations, the authors have the privilege of sharing their collective expertise on the unique cultural and linguistic characteristics of individuals who are of South Asian ethnicity. It is significant to note that this issue represents the first collection of articles on South Asians in an ASHA publication. The intent in developing this issue is to provide readers with contemporary knowledge, current data, an emerging evidence base for developing best practice recommendations, and key resources for clinicians serving South Asian clients.
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