Transforming Voice and Communication with Transgender and Gender-Diverse People: An Evidence-Based Process

First Edition

Adrienne B. Hancock, Linda L. Siegfriedt

Details: 300 pages, B&W, Softcover, 7" x 10"

ISBN13: 978-1-63550-089-9

© 2020 | Available

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Transforming Voice and Communication with Transgender and Gender-Diverse People: An Evidence-Based Process is written for speech-language pathologists and voice teachers to guide transgender and gender-diverse people through communication transformations. It follows a chronological progression from preparations through techniques, acknowledging all gender presentations throughout the text. A client-centered process is emphasized through case examples illustrating each step.

The first section, “Start Smart,” begins with a chapter about developing and monitoring the provider’s self-awareness because a mindful provider is crucial for the safety and success of the process. Information about the populations is provided next to develop the provider’s cultural humility and sensitivity. This section closes with practical considerations for working with marginalized populations and ways to mitigate barriers to their accessing care. Service delivery models for five types of settings are described by practicing speech-language pathologists who developed successful programs.

The second section, “Press On,” guides the provider through the best practice standards for gender-related voice and communication services. Procedures and provided forms are tailored to the circumstances and needs of the client and extend the assessment beyond basic vocal function. Three chapters dedicated to the phases of intervention highlight the importance of taking time to establish a collaborative and informed evidence-based plan and prepare the client’s body and mind before launching into direct voice work. Stimuli lists, photographs, and figures are provided to assist the client’s practice.

The final section, “Finish Strong,” offers several real case examples of navigating the more unique challenges in this process. Five essays about communication transformation written by gender diverse people end the book on an inspirational note.

Clients who wish to transform their voice and communication navigate physical, mental, and emotional work. This text is a guide for speech-language pathologists and voice teachers to inform and facilitate transformation. Throughout the book, real examples from the authors and colleagues demonstrate how this work can be done well with informed, thoughtful planning. Extensive resources available on a PluralPlus companion website include fillable forms and videos of techniques and clients progressing through the presented process.


The most striking aspect of the book is the authors’ evident care and compassion for those who have had the courage to undergo transition treatment. Transitioning involves a really tough journey and we are reminded of this throughout – in fact, it is this care and concern which inspires the whole guide. Suggesting mindfulness as a useful starting point, they begin by setting out in detail how voice practitioners themselves should become aware of their own attitudes and prejudices before attempting to help transitioners. We are reminded that biological differences between genders are actually very small and much of what we think of as gender difference is in fact cultural. The way male and female communication involves not just voice but choice of words, prosody and facial expressions are discussed. Posture, body tensions (especially tongue root) and the alteration of resonance spaces also come in for exploration. […]
The authors emphasise that learning to accept the developed birth voice is an important step on the way towards learning how to adjust it. Altering resonance and raising or lowering pitch is then just a way of exploring and encouraging a particular vocal quality. It does not have to feel false. […]The positive lessons are there for us all to learn: voices do inevitably adjust themselves, perhaps through accommodating illness or simply through the aging process. However, we can still create authenticity and be ourselves.”

—Deborah Hudson, in Communicating Voice (Autumn/Winter 2020)




Terminology Used In This Book


Part I. Start Smart

Chapter 1. The Mindful Provider

Chapter 2. Cultural Considerations

Chapter 3. Practical Planning


Part II. Press On

Chapter 4. Assessment

Chapter 5. Intervention Phase 1: Get ready…

Chapter 6. Intervention Phase 2: Get set…

Chapter 7. Intervention Phase 3: Go!


Part III. Finish Strong

Chapter 8. Facilitating Progress

Chapter 9. Completion and Connection

Chapter 10. Important Voices



Adrienne B. Hancock

Adrienne B. Hancock, PhD, CCC-SLP (she/her) is an Associate Professor at The George Washington University and a speech-language pathologist. Her clinical perspective informs the broad scope of her research covering the production and perception of transgender people’s voices, psychosocial impacts of vocal situations, and effectiveness of interventions. Dr. Hancock was awarded funding by NIH and has authored over 35 peer-reviewed research articles and several international invited presentations with colleagues and students. She leads the voice and communication group for the 8th edition of the WPATH Standards of Care. As a contributor and advocate for evidence-based, person-centered care, The Washington Post called her “a pioneer in the field.”

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Linda L. Siegfriedt

Linda L. Siegfriedt, MED, CCC-SLP (she/her) is a clinical educator and director of Transgender Voice and Voice Disorders Programs at The George Washington University. She is also a private practitioner and the founder of Vocal Self, LLC. For more than 30 years, Mrs. Siegfriedt has been a voice specialist in the areas of transgender voice and voice disorders at voice centers, otolaryngology practices, universities, and hospitals. Her holistic approach integrates traditional voice methodology with mindfulness and other mind-body practices. Mrs. Siegfriedt advances the quality and access to transformative voice work through her supervision initiatives as well as her presentations at national conferences, ASHA headquarters, and webinars. She has been seen on the TLC Network Series Lost in Transition and quoted in the PBS News Hour and The Washington Post

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Purchase of Transforming Voice and Communication with Transgender and Gender-Diverse People: An Evidence-Based Process comes with access to supplementary materials on a PluralPlus companion website.

To access the materials, you must register the access code printed on the inside cover of your book on the companion website.

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