Soo-Eun Chang, Ph.D.
Soo-Eun Chang, Ph.D., is an assistant professor in the department of communicative sciences and disorders at Michigan State University. Dr. Chang received her master’s degree and clinical training in speech and hearing sciences at Vanderbilt University, and her doctoral degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She then continued her training as a postdoctoral research fellow at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), in the Intramural Research Program of the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS). Dr. Chang is currently conducting an NIH-funded longitudinal investigation into brain development in children who stutter. The aims of this research are to find neural bases of early childhood stuttering and to find sex-specific brain development trajectories that lead to recovery versus persistence in stuttering. Results from this investigation are expected to contribute to finding biological markers for persistent stuttering and developing novel treatment.
Using Brain Imaging to Unravel the Mysteries of Stuttering
While researchers have made great strides in understanding stuttering in adults, the neural basis of stuttering in children largely remains a mystery. We do not yet know why up to 80 percent of children who stutter recover without intervention, nor do we know how to distinguish those who will recover without intervention from those who will not. However, recent findings support the idea that early intervention can alter or normalize brain function before stuttering-induced changes become hardwired.