Clinical Providers and Staff

Catherine Off

Associate Professor

Contact

Education

Ph.D. -  2008 - Department of Speech & Hearing Sciences - University of Washington

M.S. - 1999 - Communication Disorders - University of Wyoming

B.A. - 1996 - Linguistics - University of California-Berkeley

Courses Taught

Currently Teaching:

CSD 430, Sr. Capstone, Advanced College Writing (undergraduate)

CSD 565, Aphasia and Acquired Apraxia of Speech (graduate)

CSD 566, Acquired Cognitive-Communication Disorders (graduate)

CSD 688, Master's of Science Capstone (graduate)

Research Interests

Aphasia

Language

Spoken Language Production

Apraxia of Speech

Stroke Rehabilitation

Intensive Comprehensive Aphasia Programs

Caregiver Training and Support

Treatment Intensity and Dosage

Mild Traumatic Brain Injury

Cognitive-Communication Assessment and Treatment

Projects

Current Project #1: Big Sky Aphasia Program: Patient, Caregiver, and Student Training Outcomes

Intensive comprehensive aphasia programs (ICAPs) are a relatively new service delivery model for stroke rehabilitation. ICAPs typically provide a minimum of three hours of therapy per day for two weeks, with some programs providing as many as four to six hours a day over a period of four to five weeks. Daily therapy typically includes individual sessions, group sessions, computer-based therapy delivery, and community outings. Persons with aphasia (PWA) enrolled in an ICAP may receive as many as 120 hours of focused language therapy over the span of one month, whereas a person in a standard therapy model receives approximately 8 to 12 hours of therapy in the same time frame. While research of the ICAP model is in its infancy, initial efficacy studies indicate positive patient outcomes across a variety of impairment-based and psychosocial domains.

The Big Sky Aphasia Program at the University of Montana is designed to meet the criteria for an ICAP and has been designed with clearly defined intensity parameters, a concern for client, caregiver, and clinician perspectives, and a focus on comprehensive therapy that addresses multiple modalities using strategies and recreational opportunities individualized to the PWA. The goals of this project are: (1) to measure patient speech and language outcomes at the impairment and participation levels of the WHO-ICF model, (2) to assess patient and caregiver satisfaction with the Big Sky Aphasia Program; (3) to assess graduate student clinician training outcomes in terms of skills acquisition and clinical competencies; and (4) to assess caregiver wellness and mental health outcomes.

Caregiver outcomes are currently being evaluated with funding support from the 2016-2017 CTR-IN Mini Grant sponsored by the National Institutes of Health (#16-746Q-UM-MG26). The project title is The Well Caregiver: Fostering Caregiver Health to Support Aphasia Outcomes. The Principle Investigator is Catherine Off. The Co-Investigator is Kirsten Murray, Department of Counselor Education. 

Field of Study

Speech-Language Pathology

Health Sciences

Neurorehabilitation

Selected Publications

Invited Presentations

Off, C.A. (April 15, 2016). Research that improves lives: Harnessing the power of neuroplasticity to improve language function for survivors of stroke & brain injury. Keynote presentation at the University of Montana Conference of Undergraduate Research (UMCUR). Missoula, MT.

Off, C.A., & Griffin, J.R. (April 12, 2016). Adapting patient provider communication for patients with communication disorders. WWAMI first year medical student training. Bozeman, MT.

Off, C.A. (March 15, 2016). Sounds, science, and brains: The amazing changing brain. Virtual presentation to sixth graders in Hamilton, MT. We Are Montana in the Classroom. Missoula, MT.

Off, C.A. (October 11, 2014). Innovative aphasia intervention: Optimize treatment outcomes through principles of neuroplasticity, caregiver support, and telepractice. Presentation at the Washington Speech-Language-Hearing Association Annual Convention, Kennewick, WA.

Off, C.A., Kennedy, A. (April, 2014). It’s never too late: Brain change after injury. Student in Communication and Hearing Working in Action (SCHWA) Advocacy and Awareness Day, University of Montana, Missoula, MT.

Off, C.A. (November 1, 2012). Stroke rehabilitation and neural plasticity. Presentation and panel participant for The Mind and Body Panel at the inaugural Research Spotlight, University of Montana, Missoula, MT.

Off, C.A. (August, 2012). Neurogenic Communication Disorders: Aphasia and Traumatic Brian Injury. Presentation at the Montana Speech-Language-Hearing Association Summer Institute, Missoula, MT.

International Presentations

Off, C.A., Rogers, M.A. (June, 2006).  Three Methods of Quantifying the Quality of Communication in Aphasia.  NIDCD Fellows poster presented at the annual Clinical Aphasiology Conference, Ghent, Belgium.

National Presentations

Off, C.A., Lauria, A., Colstad, M., Hinther, V., & Kanning, C. (November, 2015). Intensity & dosage for student learning: Benefits of training in an Intensive Comprehensive Aphasia Program. Poster presented at the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association annual convention, Denver, CO.

Baylor, C., Oelke, M., Hunsaker, E., Off, C.A., Wallace, S., Pennington, S., Barner, A., and Yorkston, K. (November, 2015). Measuring communicative participation for people with aphasia: Validating the Communicative Participation Item Bank (CPIB). Seminar presentation at the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association annual convention, Denver, CO.

Smith, S., Rice, S., Off, C.A., and Yonovitz, A. (November, 2015). Cortical electrical responses occurring prior to speech initiation. Poster presented at the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association annual convention, Denver, CO.

Off, C.A., Milman, L., and Lauria, A. (May, 2015). Psychometric perspectives of ICAP outcome measures: a triangulation of researcher, clinician, and client perspectives. Platform presentation at the Clinical Aphasiology Conference, Monterey, CA.

Off, C.A., and Griffin, J. (November, 2014). Within and across-session naming under the microscope: How dosage and stimulus variables influence naming performance. Technical research presentation at the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association annual convention, Orlando, FL.

Griffin, J., and Off, C.A. (June, 2014). Treatment intensity and the effect of repetition priming on naming performance in individuals with anomia. Poster presentation (NIDCD Research Symposium) at the Clinical Aphasiology Conference, St. Simon’s Island, GA.

Eandi, M., Off, C.A., and Baylor, C. (November, 2013).  Reliability of proxy respondents who report communicative participation for persons with aphasia (PWA). Poster presented at the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association annual convention. Chicago, IL.  

Off, C.A., Jackson, C.A., Einholz, H., Cummings, P., and  Langan, M. (November, 2012). Intensive communication practice for individuals with aphasia: better with therapy? Poster presented at the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association annual convention. Atlanta, GA.

Jackson, C.A., Off, C.A., Cummings, P.D., Malka, K., Monahan, N., Sartipi, S., Simon-Weiner, A., and Eiholzer, H. (November, 2011). Intensive aphasia communication workshops with student volunteers. Poster presented at the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association annual convention, San Diego, CA.

Off, C.A., Kavalier, H., Rogers, M.A., and Spencer, K.A. (November, 2008). Anomia & Stimulus Dosage: Investigating the Influence of Repetition during Picture Naming. Technical paper presented at the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association annual convention, Chicago, IL.

Off, C.A., Kavalier, H., Rogers, M.A., and Spencer, K.A. (May, 2008). Repetition Priming and Anomia: An Investigation of Stimulus Dosage. Poster presented at the annual Clinical Aphasiology Conference, Jackson Hole, WY.

Off, C.A. (November, 2005).  Investigating the Time Course of Phonological Encoding Through Motor Programming. Student technical paper presented at the ASHA annual convention, San Diego, CA.

Off, C.A., Rogers, M.A., and Alarcon, N.B. (November, 2002).  Quantifying the Quality of Communication in Aphasia.  Poster presented at the ASHA annual convention, Atlanta, GA.

Off, C. A., and Thompson, C. L. (November, 1999).  Subcortical Lesions and Language: A Conversational Discourse Analysis.  Poster presented at the ASHA annual convention, San Francisco, CA.

State Presentations

Niland, M.R., Off, C.A., Eandi, M., Murray, K., HInther, V., Colstad, M. (October, 2015). Developing an intensive comprehensive rehabilitation and wellness program for individuals returning to campus with mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI). Poster presented at the Montana Speech-Language-Hearing Association annual convention, Billings, MT.

Powers, E.C., Wilkening, L., Off, C.A. (October, 2015). Big Sky Aphasia Program: Patient psychosocial and caregiver outcomes. Poster presented at the Montana Speech-Language-Hearing Association annual convention, Billings, MT.

Off, C.A. (October, 2014). Reaching rural Montana: Developing a telepractice program for speech-language pathologists. Poster presented at the MSHA annual convention, Missoula, MT.

Colstad, M., Hinther, V., Kanning, C., and Off, C.A. (October, 2014). Big Sky Aphasia Program: Client, Clinician, and Caregiver Outcomes. Poster presented at the MSHA annual convention, Missoula, MT. Note: This poster was awarded “Best Undergraduate Poster” at the MSHA 2014 Annual Convention.

Griffin, J., Off, C.A., Kennedy, A., Glaspey, A., Gerdes, J., Engen, J., and Jones, M. (October, 2013). Neuroplasticity, dosage, and repetition priming effects in individuals with stroke-induced aphasia.  Poster presented at the MSHA annual convention, Bozeman, MT.

Haas, A., Olson, J., Peterson, S., and Off, C.A. (October, 2013). TBI prevention in Montana. Poster presented at the MSHA annual convention, Bozeman, MT.

University Presentations

Colstad, M., Hinther, V., Kanning, C., and Off, C.A. (April, 2015). Big Sky Aphasia Program: Language and Psychosocial Outcomes for Stroke Survivors.  Poster presented at the University of Montana Conference of Undergraduate Research (UMCUR), Missoula, MT.  Note: this poster was awarded “Best Humanities Poster” for the 2015 UMCUR Poster Presentations.

Jones, M., Engen, J., and Off, C.A. (April, 2014). Neuroplasticity, dosage, and repetition priming effects in individuals with stroke-induced aphasia. Poster presented at the University of Montana Conference on Undergraduate Research (UMCUR), Missoula, MT.

Riordan, R. and Off, C.A. (April, 2014). Telepractice in speech-language pathology. Poster presented at the University of Montana Conference on Undergraduate Research (UMCUR), Missoula, MT.

Eandi, M., Off, C.A., Baylor, C., Glaspey, A.M., and Garthwait, C. (April 13, 2013). Reliability of proxy respondents who report communicative participation for persons with aphasia (PWA). Poster presented at the University of Montana Graduate Student and Faculty Research Conference, Missoula, MT.

Publications

Publications

Slovarp, L., King, L., Off, C.A., and Liss, J. (2016). A pilot study of the tongue pull-back exercise for improving tongue-base retraction and two novel methods to add resistance to the tongue pull-back. Dysphagia, 30(6). DOI 10.1007/s00455-016-9693-y.

Baylor, C., Oelke, M., Hunsaker, E., Off, C.A., Walalce, S., Pennington, S., Bammer, A...Yorkston, K. (2016). Validating the Communicative Participation Item Bank (CPIB) for use with people with aphasia: a Differential Item Functioning analysis. Aphasiology, DOI: 10.1080/02687038.2016.1225274.

Off, C.A., Griffin, J.R., Spencer, K.A., and Rogers, M.A., (2015). The impact of dose on naming accuracy with persons with aphasia. Aphasiology. DOI: 10.1080/02687038.2015.1100705.

Rogers, M.A., Off, C.A., Silkes, J., Potts, A., Kenny, A., and Pompon, R.H. (2006, abstract).  The effect of repetition priming on picture naming accuracy and latency in individuals with aphasia.  Brain and Language, 99, 212-213.

Off, C.A. (2003).  Positron emission tomography and single photon emission tomography.  Perspectives on Neurophysiology and Neurogenic Speech and Language Disorders, 13 (1), 34-38.

Dissertation

Off, C.A. (2008). Repetition priming and anomia: An investigation of stimulus dosage (Doctoral Dissertation, University of Washington).  Retrieved from ProQuest Digital http://proquest.umi.com/pqdweb?did=1604560761&sid=2&Fmt=2&clientId=48297&RQT=309&VName=PQD

Master's Thesis

Off, C.A. (1999). Subcortical lesions and language: A conversational discourse analysis (Master’s Thesis). Retrieved from  ProQuest Digital http://proquest.umi.com/pqdweb?did=1306823441&sid=2&Fmt=2&clientId=48297&RQT=309&VName=PQD.

Affiliations

American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA)

American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), Special Interest Group (SIG) 2: Neurophysiology and Neurogenic Speech and Language Disorders

Academy of Neurologic Communication Sciences and Disorders (ANCDS)

University of Montana's Brain Initiative

Academic and Scientific Advisory Board of the University of Montana's Neural Injury Center

Steering Committee for University of Montana's Health and Medicine (UMHM) Initiative

Specialized Skills

Speech-Language Pathologist (national certification and state licensure)

Honors / Awards

Honors & Awards

University of Montana Faculty Service Award (2017): The Montana Faculty Service Award recognizes a faculty member who has a history of providing superior, effective service that benefits The University of Montana.

State Clinical Achievement Award (2016): Granted by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Foundation (ASHFoundation) in September 2016 for the state of Montana. This award is granted to speech-language pathologists who demonstrate advancement of knowledge in clinical practice as evidenced by significant recent accomplishment within the past six years. Each state association is asked to nominate one individual from within the state.

Award for Continuing Education (ACE): Granted by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association in June 2015. This award is granted to speech-language pathologists who earn more that 70 hours of continuing eduction in a 36 month period.

Fellowship Award: NIDCD Fellowship to attend the NIDCD-supported “Research Symposium in Clinical Aphasiology” at the Clinical Aphasiology Conference in Jackson Hole, WY. In addition to financial support, this fellowship provided mentorship activities and seminars for young researchers.  June 2008.

Travel Award: The Graduate School Fund for Excellence and Innovation (GSFEI), $500. This travel award provided financial support to attend the Clinical Aphasiology Conference in Jackson Hole, WY to present a poster. June 2008.

Fellowship Award: NIDCD Fellowship to attend the NIDCD-supported “Research Symposium in Clinical Aphasiology” at the Clinical Aphasiology Conference in Ghent, Belgium. This fellowship also provided mentorship activities and seminars for young researchers. June 2006.

Travel Award: The Graduate School Fund for Excellence and Innovation (GSFEI), $500. This travel award provided financial support to attend the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association annual convention to present a student technical paper titled: Investigating the Time Course of Phonological Encoding through Motor Programming. San Diego, CA. November 2005.

Award: Graduate student researcher, NIH Institutional Training Grant 05T32DC0003-13. Monthly stipend of $1300 and training necessary to complete a pre-dissertation project titled, Investigating the Time Course of Phonological Encoding through Motor Programming: Effects of Word Frequency and Repetition.

Hobbies

Hiking, trail running, gardening, skiing and snowboarding