Leora Cherney was the perfect choice to serve as the invited editor for this issue on recent advances in aphasia treatment. She is not only an expert in treatment research for aphasia, she also conveys a philosophy that goes beyond the linguistic issues that define it. As Cherney says in her issue editor Foreword, the impact of aphasia extends far beyond the linguistic problem; thus, it is essential that treatment approaches do so as well. Several articles describe treatments aimed directly at the core impairments that characterize aphasia and review the research behind them.
Kendall and Nadeau (2016) base their phonomotor treatment on the phonological representations of words in language; Edmonds (2016) bases the Verb Network Strengthening Treatment (VNeST) on syntactic elements; and Kaye and Cherney (2016) focus on the discourse level, with the use of script templates. Elman (2016) extends the focus beyond particular treatment approaches by providing an historical account of Life Participation Approaches to Aphasia and introducing aphasia centers as a different paradigm addressing the broader issues (spotlight article for free access).
Finally, Babbitt, Worrall, and Cherney (2016) review studies aimed at the question of who benefits from an Intensive Comprehensive Aphasia Program (ICAP) when an array of different approaches might be applied, but in an intensive manner. It is a wonderful sampling of recent advances in treatment for persons with aphasia. I encourage you to read, enjoy, and ask new questions about translating research to practice in a way that will affect people’s language systems and lives.
Nickola W. Nelson