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College of Health Professions

Undergraduate research advisors in the health professions:

  • Email:

    Phone: 512-245-6578

    Research Interests:  Child language development and disorders.

    Bio: Dr. Domsch received her undergraduate degree from Valparaiso University, her Master's from UT-Austin, and her Ph.D. from Vanderbilt University. Her research is in the area of child language development and disorders. Her current interest is in the efficacy of interventions for the development of complex syntax in school-age children. She has worked with undergraduate students who wish to present at state and national conferences.

  • Email:

    Research Interests: My two lines of research are (1) language learning and intervention for preschool-age to elementary-age children and (2) clinical decision-making. Under the language learning and intervention line, I focus on improving existing assessment and intervention strategies for young children who are members of a monolingual English population and from culturally and linguistically diverse populations. For example, in early language intervention, speech language pathologists provide clinical populations with multiple examples of language targets, often including familiar toys during the sessions. This focused stimulation strategy is highly effective for nouns, but significantly less effective for verbs. I draw on cognitive theories of learning to try and enhance focused stimulation’s effectiveness. In a recent publication, I found that by selecting toys with similar shapes to use in language therapy, SLPs can dramatically increase the number of ver bs typically developing toddlers acquire in a short intervention. In future studies, I will test whether clinical populations with strong visual-spatial skills experience a similar boost in verb learning. 

    My clinical decision-making line has two sub-lines. In one sub-line, I research how master clinicians and teachers of culturally diverse and/or special populations select materials for language intervention with children at the emerging and developing stages of language development. Currently, my research focuses on storybooks read aloud to pre-readers. In future studies, I will expand to selection of toys for different types of language targets and selection of assistive technology devices for a range of clinical profiles. For studies in this sub-line, I apply a methodology adapted from the field of sensory and perception research (e.g., wine tasting, olive oil tasting, salt tasting). In my application of this methodology, a panel of expert clinicians or teachers sort storybooks into ranked stacks based on how difficult they think the storybooks would be for preschoolers to understand when read aloud. Expert clinicians and teachers described each stack globally as well as wh y they assigned each storybook to a particular stack. From transcriptions of the explanations, I derive a glossary of book characteristics using content analysis. I create a difficulty-level scale using a multivariate analysis technique that simultaneously analyzes book sorts and glossary terms. These empirically derived difficulty-level systems provide an evidence-based tool that new professionals and parents can use to select storybooks. 

    In the other clinical decision-making sub-line, I study how biasness affects the clinical judgements of professionals and students in Communication Sciences and Disorders serving clients/patients of all ages across sub-specialties. This sub-line is important because 14% of the U.S. population is foreign born and within the next 30 years the U.S. will no longer have one ethnic or racial majority. The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association’s membership is largely female (95.30%), monolingual (93.46%) and white (92.10%), making the cultivation of cultural sensitivity and competence among its members a critical need. 
    My faculty research profile is here.
    My research website is here.

    Bio: I was raised in Houston, Texas. Upon graduation from high school, I attended college at the University of Oklahoma where I earned a Bachelors of Arts in Letters. Upon graduation for my undergraduate studies, I worked as a commercial real estate appraiser and underwriter for nine years in Houston and Austin. In the spring of 1997, I began a Masters of Arts degree in Communication Sciences and Disorders, specializing in Deaf Education at the University of Texas at Austin. Upon graduation and completion of my teaching certification, I worked for Austin Independent School Districts' Regional Day School for the Deaf in a total communication classroom (speech, English sign code, picture communication) for children in kindergarten through second grade. In the fall of 2006, I began doctoral study in Communication Sciences and Disorders at the University of Texas at Dallas specializing in Child Language Development and Disorders. I completed requirements for my license in Speech Language Pathology in 2008 and my doctoral degree in August 2013. Texas State University hired me as a lecturer faculty member in the fall 2013 and as a tenure-track faculty member in the fall 2014.

  • Email:

    Phone: 512-245-2662

    Research Interests: Hearing, hearing loss, ears, speech perception.

    Bio: I have been a practicing audiologist for 30 years and have worked in the Department of Communication Disorders for 25 years. I see clients and supervise graduate student in the Speech-Language-Hearing Clinic in addition to teaching classes in acoustics, speech perception, anatomy/physiology of the ear, neuroanatomy, hearing testing and aural rehabilitation (hearing aids, cochlear implants, therapy). I have been a second reader and a supervising faculty on two other Honor's projects and successfully helped a student a SURF grant and an outside award to support her research.


  • Email:

    Phone: 512-245-2562

    Research Interests: Antibiotic resistant microbes continue to be a major threat to both healthcare and community. Healthcare associated infections (HAIs) have become increasingly difficult to manage. My research with HAIs primarily examines MRSA prevalence in environments and diverse populations, while also examining how people learn and adapt to the condition. I also continue to conduct research in the zoonotic realm, primarily rabies. My teaching and research are integrated between clinical microbiology & MDx.

    Bio: Please see: for the best "personal interests."

    You may also visit:  for our CLS program site.

    I am on Linkedin, Twitter (@RodneyRohde), ResearchGate, and we have a CLS Facebook Page.