Doctoral Student Profiles
Mariajosé Bosanko is currently a third-year Ph.D. student in Communication Sciences and Disorders. She has an MA in Language Literacy and Sociocultural Studies with an emphasis in Bilingual Education from The University of New Mexico and an MA in Communication Sciences and Disorders from LSU. Additionally, she works as a speech-language pathologist for East Baton Rouge Parish School System. Mariajosé is originally from Mexico City. Her research interest include: simultaneous and sequential bilingual language development, child speech and language disorders within bilingual and second language learning contexts, and evaluation of speech and language assessment tools when working with bilingual individuals and speakers of Spanish-influenced English
Adam Hogan is a second-year doctoral student (Fall 2021) studying under Dr. Todd A. Gibson. He earned his MA in Communication Sciences and Disorders from Louisiana State University in 2004, after which he worked as a school-based speech-language pathologist for sixteen years before returning to LSU. During this time, Adam was a member of the assistive technology support teams in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and Kingwood, Texas; evaluated and treated children with complex communication needs in preschool through high school; and spent the last three years of his clinical career at a kindergarten campus in Zachary, Louisiana. His research interests include child and adult second language acquisition, second language phonological acquisition; the effects of noise on second language speech perception, & speech perception among trained & untrained listers.
Deirdre Larsen is a fourth-year doctoral student in the Department of Communication Disorders at Louisiana State University under the mentorship of Dr. Melda Kunduk. She earned a Bachelor of Science degree in 2014 from the University of Montevallo and a Master of Arts degree in 2017 from Louisiana State University. Deirdre is a certified clinician providing service to adults with voice and swallowing disorders at the Our lady of the Lake Voice Center. She previously evaluated resonance and speech sound production in children at the Our Lady of the Lake Cleft and Craniofacial Clinic. Deirdre’s research focuses on the health and disease of individuals with swallowing disorders. Current research includes optimization of treatment outcomes in head and neck cancer patients by relating radiation toxicities, patient characteristics, and physiological and functional outcomes in swallowing, taste, and cough. Deirdre is also the primary instructor for Introduction to Communication Disorders (COMD 2081).
Tahmineh Maleki graduated from her master's program in 2019 in Speech Therapy with an emphasis in the assessment of children with developmental language disorders (DLD) from Isfahan University of Medical Sciences. Additionally, she worked as a speech-language pathologist for more than 5 years after she graduated from her bachelor program in 2015 with Persian speaker school and pre-school age children. Tahmineh is originally from Iran. Her research interests are child language development and disorders empowered by such a strong study framework as evidence-based practice, late talker's children, and early acquisition and intervention.
Fatema Akhter Mitu
Fatema Akhter Mitu is a first year (Spring 2022) doctoral student in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders at Louisiana State University under the mentorship of Dr. Eileen Haebig. She earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Speech & Language Therapy from the University of Dhaka, Bangladesh (2009). Before starting her Masters’ she has been working as a clinical Speech & Language Therapist for four and half years in a spinal cord rehabilitation hospital, which provides both in-patient and outpatient therapy services to both children and adults with a wide variety of diagnoses. Additionally, she has been working as a trainer for the parents, special school teachers’ and caregivers dealing with children and adults with communication and swallowing difficulties.
She has completed her Masters’ in Interdisciplinary Social Sciences majoring in Communicative Disorders and Sciences from the State University of New York at Buffalo (2018). After completing her Masters’ she worked as a Research Assistant for a year at the Institute for Autism Research, Canisius College Buffalo. Her research interests mainly focused on language development and processing in children with autism and other neurodevelopmental disorders. It is her intention to make her fellow Bangladeshi clinicians realize that research can be more fun in this field. Moreover, evidence-based practice can be effective when researchers and clinicians work together. Fatema is also the primary instructor for Introduction to Communication Disorders (COMD 2081).
Kwaku Nyantakyi is a first-year (Spring 2021) doctoral student in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders at Louisiana State University, under the supervision of Dr. Janna Oetting. Kwaku graduated from the University of Ghana with a BA in geography and linguistics in 2017. After his Bachelor’s degree, he worked for one year as a teaching and research assistant at the University of Ghana, Department of Linguistics. He completed his MSC in speech and language therapy also from the University of Ghana in 2020. Kwaku’s research interest is in language processing in bilingual children with dyslexia and specific language impairment. He is currently in charge of assisting his mentor with research work, teaching lab courses in the D4 Child Language Lab, as well as tutoring the Introduction to Language course.
Lindsey A Parker
Lindsey A. Parker is a fifth-year doctoral candidate in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders at Louisiana State University under the mentorship of Dr. Melda Kunduk. Through interdisciplinary collaboration with the Laryngeal Imaging Lab and Our Lady of the Lake Voice Center, her research investigates multi-dimensional voice outcome measures and their clinical applications. This research has included differential diagnosis for essential voice tremor and adductor spasmodic dysphonia using laryngeal high-speed videoendoscopy, the clinical value of quantitative timing, and spatial parameters evaluating dysphagia risk from MBSS for head and neck cancer patients, and voice outcomes following repeated surgeries for recurrent respiratory papillomatosis. Lindsey graduated cum laude from Northwestern University with a BA in English Literature, and she received a MA in Communication Sciences and Disorders from LSU in 2015. She received the Certificate of Clinical Competence from the American Speech-Language Hearing Association in 2018 and works with a diverse patient population of voice disorders, dysphagia, and head and neck cancer at Our Lady of the Lake Voice Center. Lindsey has been an instructor for Introduction to Language, COMD Goes to the Movies, and Clinical Observation.
Aswathy Anakkathil Pradeep
Aswathy Anakkathil Pradeep is a third-year (Spring 2020) doctoral student in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders at Louisiana State University, supervised by Dr. Susan Duncan. Aswathy completed her MA in Speech-Language Pathology from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania (2019) and her Bachelor’s degree in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology from Manipal University, India (2017). She is interested in neuro-communication disorders and associated treatment in adults, and her research focuses on transcranial direct current stimulation and treatment of individuals with aphasia. Aswathy hails from the verdant state of Kerala, in the south of India.
Tengwen Fan is a first-year (Fall 2022) doctoral student in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders at Louisiana State University, supervised by Dr. Julie Schneider. Tengwen completed her Master’s degree in Developmental Psychology (2022) and Bachelor’s degree in Psychology (2019) in Shaanxi Normal University, China. Tengwen is interested in exploring the language development of young children with behavioral, electrophysiological and neuroimaging approaches. Tengwen is now conducting research on phonological processing and statistical learning of young children.
Ella Tabari is a research assistant and a Ph.D. student in the department of communication sciences and disorders under the mentorship of. Dr. Johari. She completed her first Ph.D. in Neurolinguistics in Universidad Autónoma de Madrid where she conducted her research in understanding Neural Signature of Bilingualism using Magnetoencephalography (MEG) technique. Currently, her research focuses on the validation of HD-tDCS for improvement of speech and limb motor control in healthy older adults and individuals with Parkinson’s disease. She is interested in employing a combination of methods from neuroscience, experimental psychology, and linguistics to develop new skills and solve new challenges in the clinical population.
Jesica R. Sykes
Jes is a doctoral student in the Department of Communication Sciences. She completed a Bachelor of Science degree in Dietetics followed by a Master of Science degree in Speech-Language Pathology from Lamar University in Beaumont, Texas. She is unapologetically autistic and is passionate about using her experiences, evidence-based practices, and research to assist in changing systems for the better. Previously, Jes worked as an ASHA-certified, Distinguished Early Professional, and ACE – awarded speech-language pathologist across various settings including pediatric home health, outpatient clinical services, and a virtual magnet school. Additionally, she consults with parents, educators, and other allied health professionals to help ensure services are truly neurodiversity affirming for the autistic and neurodivergent communities. Her research interests include participatory research, fostering affirming neurodivergent communication, and advocacy / self-advocacy skills while simultaneously validating personal identity among autistic and neurodivergent individuals. Current areas of service include treasurer for the Disability Caucus of the American Speech-Language Hearing Association, research collaborator for Research on Autism Driven by Autistic Researchers (RADAR) and is an advisory member and ongoing consultant for Making Sense of Autism, LLC. Outside of academia Jes enjoys music, reading, writing, and befriending any animal she sees!
Biraj Bhattarai is a second-year doctoral student (Fall 2022) in the Department of
Communication Sciences and Disorders at Louisiana State University under the mentorship
of Dr. Bijoyaa Mohapatra. He completed Bachelor of Audiology and Speech Language Pathology
from the Institute of Medicine (IOM), Tribhuvan University, Nepal (2018), and a Master
of Science degree in Speech Language Pathology (2021) from All India Institute of
Speech and Hearing (AIISH), University of Mysore, India. He was part of many research
projects during his master's program and has authored several scientific publications.
He was working as Speech Language Pathologist at AIISH before joining his PhD program
Biraj’s research interest in understanding cognitive and language processing in neuro-communication disorder, specifically Aphasia. His research focuses on utilizing neuroimaging technology (fNIRS) to assess neural correlates of cognition, language, and related functions in persons with aphasia.
He likes playing cricket and soccer.