Major Department

Speech Pathology and Audiology


College of Liberal Arts & Sciences


BA (Bachelor of Arts)

Session and Year of Graduation

Spring 2017

Honors Major Advisor

Amanda Van Horne

Thesis Mentor

Alison Lemke


This case study examines types of picture confrontation naming errors observed in an 8 year old child with a history of right hemisphere brain tumor and resection. The child was thought to either have language functions located his right brain hemisphere (switched dominance), or to have mixed hemispheric dominance for language, and so represents an atypical case. A period of intensive language therapy utilizing approaches aimed at strengthening semantic networks for word-retrieval was completed. The child showed progress on goals related to semantic network strengthening, but formal test scores using picture stimuli indicated marginal improvement. Further analysis of test error types was completed, revealing a continued high percentage of errors that were visually related. Visually related naming errors would be more typically expected after right hemisphere damage, reflecting a visual agnosia. Conclusions about this child’s individual brain organization are reached. Implications for assessment and treatment of word-retrieval and/or vocabulary learning deficits in cases of switched or mixed language dominance are discussed. Potential influences of visual processing on semantic access are also discussed.

Total Pages

17 pages


Copyright © 2017 Sharon Serper