Production of /r/

Did you see The Entire World of R in the June 27, 2011 cover story of Advance Magazine for Speech-Language Pathologists?

The authors Lila Carson, Susan Miller and Karen Noll from Valdosta State University in Valdosta, Georgia present some very useful information on how to use vowel drills to facilitate /r/ production.

We were very pleased that they used The Entire World of R Advanced Screening as their pre- and post-test assessment. The Entire World of R Advanced Screening looks at 32 different types of /r/, including vocalic /r/ and /r/ blends in multiple contexts and complexities. The assessment provides detailed information to determine present level of performance for an initial baseline. This information from the screening is invaluable in selecting intervention targets and monitoring the response to treatment. Data from the screening as the article displays is sufficiently rich enough to collect data for a research study. We feel this is the most comprehensive evaluation tool for /r/ and the authors apparently agreed.

What has been your experience with The Entire World of R Advanced Screening? How has it help you in your evaluation and treatment?


  1. Hey, I have a question, and couldn’t see where to post it other than here. I was reviewing a Got R Problems powerpoint presentation that talks about the 8 variations of /r/, but I am not sure where the /r/ in the words arrange, around, arrive, arouse, arrears, array, etc. would fit in that schema. Can you help me out? Thanks.

    • Hi John-

      I am going to take a stab in the dark with these words. Since these words aren’t /r/ blends in the initial position, I would teach the /r/ in your word list (s) as prevocalic /r/’s as the /a/ is produced separately than the /r/. Christine

  2. I see a student who has been working on changing his /l/ for /r/substitution for 2.5 years (he is now 7years old). He can make the r correctly in sentences but has no carryover to conversational speech. I have never seen such a stubborn tongue tip! He uses much muscular effort to maintain the correct production of r. Though I do not see any structural abnormality, would it be wise to have him evaluated at a medical setting?

    • Hi Becky-
      I would recommend administering The Entire World of R Elicitation Probe for prevocalic /r/ to see exactly which vowel + prevocalic /r/ to assess what is happening with your student. Many times the lack of carryover is a result of an ineffective elicitation technique such as utilizing er to elicit prevocalic /r/. This can lead to even further rounding of the lips versus retraction of the lips which is the goal of therapy.

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