Leading Researcher/Head of Lab

Dr. Heather Flowers

Heather Flowers is a speech-language pathologist, clinical researcher, and an assistant professor at the University of Ottawa. She completed a Master of Education at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education and a Master of Health Science in Speech-Language Pathology at the University of Toronto. Subsequently, she undertook PhD studies at the University of Toronto including supplementary training at the Institute for Clinical and Evaluative Sciences (Sunnybrook Campus, Toronto).

Her current research interests include:

  • Understanding neuroanatomical relationships between swallowing and communication functions
  • Identifying the frequency and recovery patterns of swallowing and communication impairments in stroke patients
  • Developing efficacious interventions for swallowing impairments that also promote gains in communicative functions
  • Translating knowledge from observational and intervention studies in the form of scoping and systematic reviews of the literature

Research Associates/Invited Researchers: Former

Dr. Mona Ebrahimipour (June 2016-May 2017)

PhD Students: Present

Nalia Juarez-Gurgel (November 2016-Present)

Nalia is a Ph.D. student in the School of Rehabilitation Sciences at the University of Ottawa. Her thesis takes an interdisciplinary approach to understanding the post-stroke recovery process, focusing on the relationship between oral health and post-stroke recovery.
Subsequent to obtaining a Doctorate in Dental Surgery (DDS) from the State University of Campinas (Brazil), Nalia completed a Master of Science (M.Sc.) in dental prosthesis at the São Leopoldo Mandic Faculty of Dentistry in Campinas, Brazil. Nalia has a certificate of Residency in Dental Implants from the Brazilian Dental Association, and has been practicing dentistry and overlooking the oral health of adults and persons with disabilities since 2002.

Marie-France Perrier (September 2016-Present)

Master’s Clinical Program Students: Former

Renée Desrochers (May 2017-April 2018)

Renée graduated from the School of Rehabilitation Sciences at the University of Ottawa in 2018 with a Master of Health Sciences in Speech-Language Pathology. Renée’s thesis observed the usage of dietary interventions for dysphagia in post-stroke patients. She is currently a registered member of the College of Audiologists and Speech-Language Pathologists of Ontario and works for the Catholic School Board of MonAvenir in the Greater Toronto Area.

Erica Graveline (May 2017-April 2018)

Erica obtained her Master of Health Sciences in Speech-Language Pathology from the School of Rehabilitation Sciences at the University of Ottawa in 2018. Her honours thesis focused on the feasibility of a screening test for detecting aphasia in acute care. Currently she is working as a speech-language pathologist for Active Communication Therapy (a private clinic that provides health services to persons in the Ottawa area).

Laurie Jalbert (May 2017-April 2018)

Laurie graduated with a Master of Health Sciences in Speech-Language Pathology from the School of Rehabilitation Sciences at the University of Ottawa in 2018. Her thesis studied dietary interventions for dysphagia after stroke. After graduating, Laurie was employed by the Integrate Health and Social Services Centre of Outaouais (CISSO), a private speech-language pathology clinic in Quebec. She is particularly interested in providing therapy to children with delayed speech and writing development.

Cloé Lévesque (May 2017-2018)

Cloé completed her Master of Health Sciences in Speech-Language Pathology at the School of Rehabilitation Sciences at the University of Ottawa in 2018. Her thesis focused on the feasibility of detecting aphasia in acute care through the usage of a screening test. Presently Cloé is working as a speech-language pathologist for the Fer à Sept-Îles School Board in Quebec.

Master’s Clinical Program Students: Present

Amélie Charlebois

Stéphanie Chicoine

Audréamne Garard

Arian Larivière-Ponton

Bachelor’s Honours Students: Former

Rachel Lee (2017-2018)

Rachel completed her honour’s thesis with Dr. Flowers in 2017-2018, centring on Parkinson’s Disease and dysphagia. After completing her Bachelor of Health Sciences at the University of Ottawa, Rachel was hired in the Deconeuro Lab as a clinical research coordinator, volunteers with March of Dimes and Action Potential Services, and has plans to pursue a career in healthcare.

Gloria Zuljevic (2017-2018)

Gloria completed her undergraduate honour’s thesis under the guidance of Dr. Flowers, concentrating on the development of a language screening tool for normalization in healthy persons. Gloria has a Bachelor of Health Sciences from the University of Ottawa and is currently studying aging and health as a Master’s student at Queen’s University. In the future, Gloria plans on pursuing a career in rehabilitative healthcare.

Matea Zuljevic (2017-2018)

Matea completed her honour’s thesis with Dr. Flowers, focusing on current clinical practice behaviours of speech-language pathologists for oral care in patients with post-stroke dysphagia. She obtained her Bachelor of Health Sciences at the University of Ottawa in 2018. Presently Matea is a Master’s student at the University of Waterloo, studying public health and health systems, with hopes of working in the public health sector in the near future.

Bachelor’s Students: Present

Shainuka Kannathas

Kannika Hour