Esther Kim, PhD, MS, BSc

Associate Professor, Faculty of Rehabilitation Medicine - Communication Sciences & Disorders
Chair, Faculty of Rehabilitation Medicine - Communication Sciences & Disorders

Pronouns: she/her/hers


Associate Professor, Faculty of Rehabilitation Medicine - Communication Sciences & Disorders
(780) 492-5980
3-79 Corbett (E.A.) Hall
8205 - 114 St NW
Edmonton AB
T6G 2G4

Chair, Faculty of Rehabilitation Medicine - Communication Sciences & Disorders




PhD – Speech, Language & Hearing Sciences – University of Arizona – 2006

MS – Speech-Language Pathology – University of Arizona – 2000

BSc – Psychology – University of Alberta – 1998


Research Affiliate - Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital

Neuroscience and Mental Health Institute

Alberta Cognitive Neuroscience

Alberta College of Speech-Language Pathologists and Audiologists (ACSLPA)

American Speech-Language Hearing Association

Academy of Neurologic Communication Sciences and Disorders (ANCDS)

Aphasia Access

Background Information

After receiving her BSc (Psychology) from the University of Alberta, Dr. Kim completed graduate and post-graduate training at the University of Arizona. She has worked in several settings with adult neurogenic clients, including skilled nursing facilities, home health and the Aphasia Research Project at the University of Arizona. She joined the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders in December 2009.

Professional Interests

Dr. Kim's research focuses on investigating cognitive factors contributing to language processing (particularly written language processing) and treatments to remediate acquired language disorders. She also investigates treatment-induced neuroplasticity in adults with acquired neurological communication disorders. She is a Research Affiliate of the Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital, and a member of the Centre for Neuroscience and Alberta Cognitive Neuroscience.

Dr. Kim is also actively involved in aphasia awareness and advocacy in the community. She is co-founder of the Alberta Aphasia Camp, in partnership with March of Dimes Canada.


The ultimate goal of our research lab is to improve the quality of life for individuals affected by acquired language disorders. Research in the lab includes studies designed to investigate cognitive mechanisms underlying language processing, developing evidence-based treatments, examining methods for increasing neural plasticity and promoting quality of life through Life Participation Approach for Aphasia (LPAA) based interventions. 

We use a combination of behavioural and clinical methods to examine cognitive (e.g., attention, working memory) and linguistic (e.g., semantic, orthographic, phonologic) processing in adults with acquired and progressive language disorders, and healthy aging populations. We also use non-invasive brain stimulation techniques - specifically transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) - in conjunction with behavioural speech-language treatment to investigate neural plasticity in aphasia.

Current Research

  • Voice Adaptive Training for Adults with Aphasia (VoiceAdapt Trial)
  • Community-Based Programming for People with Aphasia
  • Enhancing neural plasticity in aphasia 

Dr. Kim is currently recruiting individuals with aphasia for these research studies. Please contact her via email ( for more information.



CSD 570 - Elective

A variety of topics will be offered. Students can register in this for credit toward the MScSLP requirement of 1 credit in elective coursework.

Browse more courses taught by Esther Kim

Scholarly Activities

Research - Community-Based Programming for People with Aphasia

This study examines the impact of education on aphasia and communication support on the participation of people with aphasia in their communities.

Research - Neuroplasticity in Aphasia: Impact of Non-Invasive Brain Stimulation

Participants will receive speech-language treatment directed towards verbal expression or reading comprehension, coupled with transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS). This study takes place in collaboration with clinicians at the Glenrose Rehabiltitation Hospital.

Research - Voice Adaptive Training for Adults with Aphasia

20200301 to 20201231

This study examines language outcomes following training with a voice adaptive tablet-based training application for naming impairments in aphasia. Participants will be randomly assigned to received training for 5 weeks using a tablet-based home program, or to a waitlist control group, who will receive the training after a 5-week waitlist period is up.

Featured Publications

Kim, Esther Sung; Suleman, Salima; Hopper, Tammy

JSLHR. 2020 June; 63 (6):1845-1860

2. Teasell, R., Salbach, N. M., Foley, N., Mountain, A., Cameron, J. I., Jong, A. D., … Kim, E. S. …& Lindsay, M. P.

International Journal of Stroke. 2020 January; 15 (7):763-788

Wilson, Carlee; Kim, Esther S

Aphasiology. 2019 November; 35 (3):314-333

Esther S. Kim, J. Renzo Garcia

Teaching and Learning in Communication Sciences and Disorders. 2019 January; 3 (2):1-20

Kim, E. S., Suleman, S. & Hopper, T.

Journal of Neurolinguistics. 2018 January;