How the Fast ForWord Programs Help with Auditory Processing Disorder

Picture of Peter Barnes
Peter Barnes
Auditory Processing Disorder, Fast ForWord

Fast ForwordFast ForWord programs are proven to develop auditory processing skills. LearnFast recorded a video interview with Devon Barnes, speech pathologist and Auditory Processing Disorder (APD) specialist and asked her explain.

Key points from the interview included:

  • Fast ForWord trains multiple aspects of auditory processing including:
    • Auditory discrimination
    • Auditory memory
    • Following instructions
    • Receptive language
  • Neuroimaging shows physical brain changes after Fast ForWord
  • Tests confirm improvements in auditory processing

Watch the video interview:



Prefer to read the video transcript? Here it is.

How the Fast ForWord Programs Help with Auditory Processing Disorder

Interviewer: Devon, why does the Fast ForWord program work so well when dealing with auditory processing disorder?

Devon Barnes: Well, the first consideration that we make when we're evaluating the efficacy of any program is, has it come out of research? And Fast ForWord came out of over 30 years of neuroscience research before it was developed. Since that time, it's now been 14 years since it was developed, it's had many innovations, many improvements.

Now, there are 10 Fast ForWord programs, encompassing a huge number of skills, including intensive training for those children with auditory processing disorder.

Interviewer: So after that many years of research and now this many years of it actually being used, have we seen any results that are worth talking about?

Devon Barnes: Over 250 studies have been done into the Fast ForWord programs with amazing results in some of those studies, even studies looking with neuroimaging.

Studies looking at brains of students, pre and post the program, and seeing the actual, physical changes we've made in brains of students with language and reading disorders. So, we can actually measure brain changes after the program.

Interviewer: So, after this many years of working with learning difficulties, why did you choose Fast ForWord over the other products?

Devon Barnes: Well, number one, because it has come out of many years of very well conducted neuroscience. And number two because these programs simultaneously develop so many skills.

They develop all manner of language skills including auditory discrimination, vocabulary building, grammar, syntax, morphology, every aspect of our language, and also written language - reading and spelling, sequencing skills, but in addition to that, the programs also intensively train cognitive skills.

So, they're very much increasing memory, attention, sequencing, and processing.

And there are very few programs--well, there are no other programs that I know of that simultaneously incorporate the development of all of those skills.

Interviewer: So, if a child has auditory processing disorder, the program's not specifically written for that, but it can be used to treat that?

Devon Barnes: Absolutely, because the Fast ForWord program intensively trains aspects of auditory processing, particularly auditory discrimination, auditory memory, following instructions, receptive language, and those skills are intensively trained five days a week for eight to 12 weeks. At the end of that time, we can actually now see that we've rewired the brains of those students in those areas.

The research has shown the exercises not only achieve physical changes in the brain, improved wiring of the brain, but also we can prove with post-testing that they've improved the function of the child.

So, their oral language improves, their comprehension, their auditory processing improves, and there's lots of research to show that.

Interviewer: Devon, thanks for your time.

Devon Barnes: My pleasure.

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