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Laura Hurd Awarded First Place
in Distinguished Master's Thesis Competition

RELEASED: Dec. 6, 2006

Laura HurdEAU CLAIRE — Laura Hurd, Eau Claire, was recently awarded first place in the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire's Distinguished Master's Thesis competition for her thesis titled "A Comparison of Language Production, Language Comprehension, and Cognitive Functioning in Identical Twins with Williams Syndrome." Hurd received her master's degree in communication disorders in May 2006.

Each year, faculty members at UW-Eau Claire are invited to nominate exceptional quality theses, with judging provided by a Graduate Council faculty committee. Professor of communication sciences and disorders Dr. Kristine Retherford, Hurd's thesis adviser, submitted her paper to the competition, describing it as "uniformly strong in the categories of clarity, scholarship, methodology, as well as a contribution to the field."

Hurd presented her results at the 2005 American Speech, Language, and Hearing Association's National Convention. She also completed two additional post hoc analyses on the data collected in her thesis, which was presented at the 2006 ASHA convention. Hurd said she has a high interest in this population and already has plans to complete more research projects in the future.

The Distinguished Master's Thesis award includes a $200 cash prize, and Hurd, who currently works for CESA-10 as a speech-language pathologist in the Gilmanton school district, will also have her thesis submitted to the Midwestern Association of Graduate Schools thesis competition for next spring.

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NW

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