How can everyday trouble caused by hearing impairment or speech difficulties be overcome?

Minna Laakso investigates the effect of various communication disorders on everyday conversational situations and the effectiveness of interventions targeted at such difficulties.

What are your research topics?

I study conversational interactions and, in particular, how various communication disorders affect everyday situations that involve speech. What kind of problems relating to hearing, speaking and understanding arise in connection with different disorders, and how are problems handled together? I use videos as research material.

Where and how does the topic of your research have an impact?

My research produces new information on the means used to handle problems related to hearing, speaking and understanding in everyday situations. For example, how people with impaired hearing check poorly heard speech and how others involved in conversations take difficulties in hearing into account. Or how a person with a language impairment looks for words or modifies their speech to be more understandable to others.

What is particularly inspiring in your field right now?

I am interested in the impact of interventions targeted at problems associated with speech, language and hearing, and how results start to be seen also outside the measurements taken after the interventions, in everyday situations.