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Research Assistant Professor

Dr. Geist is a certified speech-language pathologist with an emphasis in augmentative and alternative communication (AAC). Prior to joining the research faculty at UNC, she worked in direct service, consultation, and product development, with her efforts concentrated on intervention approaches that target communication, language, and literacy outcomes for individuals with complex communication needs. Her research interests center on leveraging technology in the delivery of effective intervention. She is currently a co-PI on multiple federally funded research and development projects.


  • Ph.D., Nova Southeastern University, Computing Technology in Education
  • M.S., Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Speech-language Pathology
  • B.S., Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Speech-language Pathology

Credentials and Licensures

  • ASHA Certificate of Clinical Competence (CCC), Speech-language Pathology
  • Pennsylvania State License, Speech-Language Pathology
  • Certificate in Distance Learning Design and Development
  • Assistive Technology Application Certificate

Selected Publications


  • Erickson, K., Geist, L., Hatch, P., & Quick, N. (in press). The challenge of symbolic communication for school-aged students with the most significant cognitive disabilities. In B. Ogletree (Ed.), Augmentative and Alternative Communication: Challenges and Solutions. Plural Publishing.
  • Cross, R., Erickson, K., Geist, L., & Hatch, P. (in press). Vocabulary selection. In L. Lloyd & D. Fuller (Eds). Principles and Practices in Augmentative and Alternative Communication. Slack Publishing.
  • Geist, L., Erickson, K., Greer, C., & Hatch, P. (2020). Enhancing classroom-based communication instruction for students with significant disabilities and limited language. Exceptionality Education International, 30, 42-54
  • Geist, L. (2020). Classroom-based communication instruction: The Project Core implementation model. Closing the Gap Solutions Annual Resource Directory, 38, 3-8.
  • Erickson, K., Geist, L., Hatch, P., & Quick, N. (2019). The Universal Core Vocabulary [Technical Report]. Chapel Hill, NC: Center for Literacy & Disability Studies, Department of Allied Health Sciences, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
  • Erickson, K., Geist, L., & Hatch, P. (2019). Impact of self-regulated strategy instruction integrated with SOLO® Literacy Suite. Assistive Technology Outcomes and Benefits, 11, 17-28.
  • Erickson, K., Geist, L., & Hatch, P. (2017). AAC buy-in at home. The ASHA Leader, 22, 46-51.
  • Erickson, K. & Geist, L. (2016). The profiles of students with significant cognitive disabilities and complex communication needs. Augmentative and Alternative Communication, 32(3), 187-197.
  • Geist, L., Hatch, P., & Erickson, K. (2014). Promoting academic achievement for early communicators of all ages. Perspectives on Augmentative and Alternative Communication, 23, 173-181.
  • Wright, P., & Geist, L. (2013). Selecting effective interventions for individuals with ASD. Autism Network Journal, 3(2), 1-5.
Lori Geist
  • Address

    321 South Columbia Street

    Suite 1100 Bondurant Hall

    Chapel Hill, NC 27599-7335