Sofia Vallila Rohter, PhD, CCC-SLP

Photo of Sofia Vallila Rohter, PhD, CCC-SLP
Associate Professor, Co-Director of the Cognitive Neuroscience Group
Communication Sciences and Disorders
Research: Cognitive Neuroscience Group
(617) 724-3824
Office Location: 
Shouse - 428

Sofia Vallila Rohter is Associate Professor in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders in the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences. She is also Co-Director of the Cognitive Neuroscience Group. She also teaches Anatomy and Physiology of the Speech, Language, and Hearing Mechanism in our online prerequisite course offerings.

She received her PhD from the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology, Program in Speech and Hearing Biosciences and Technology in 2014, and joined the full-time faculty of the MGH Institute September 2015. Dr. Vallila Rohter teaches graduate courses on phonetics, acoustics and the neural bases of speech, language and hearing.

In her research, Dr. Vallila Rohter aims to better understand the underlying mechanisms contributing to relearning in individuals with aphasia. Using neuroimaging and behavioral methods, she explores how nonlinguistic cognitive systems might contribute to success with therapy. She examines the behavioral and neural strategies engaged when individuals are faced with novel learning tasks, further examining how manipulations to task, stimuli and context can facilitate or hinder learning. The broad goal of her research is to improve clinicians’ abilities to tailor treatment to individuals, improving the predictability and efficacy of treatment for aphasia.

Clinically, Dr. Vallila Rohter practices as a speech-language pathologist in acute care as part of the Rehabilitation team at Brigham and Women’s Hospital.

Research Interests

Aphasia Rehabilitation
Category Learning
Feedback-based learning
Feedback processing
Executive Functions
Strategy Development
Individual Differences
Neural organization of language
Neural substrates of learning


Selected Publications:
Des Roches, C., Vallila-Rohter, S., Villard, S., Tripodis, Y., Caplan, D., & Kiran, S. (submitted). Evaluating treatment and generalization patterns of two theoretically motivated sentence comprehension therapies.

Vallila-Rohter, S., & Kiran, S. (2015). An examination of strategy implementation during abstract nonlinguistic category learning in aphasia. Journal of Speech Language and Hearing Research.

Vallila-Rohter, S., & Kiran, S. (2013). Nonlinguistic learning in individuals with aphasia: effects of training method and stimulus characteristics. American Journal of Speech Language Pathology, 22(2), S426 - 37.

Vallila-Rohter, S., & Kiran, S. (2013). Non-linguistic learning in aphasia: evidence from a paired associate and feedback based task. Neuropsychologia, 51(1), 79-90.

Book Chapters
Vallila-Rohter, S
& Kiran, S. (2015). Diagnosis and treatment of semantic disorders. In A. Hillis (Ed.), The Handbook of Adult Language Disorders, 2nd Edition. New York, NY: Psychology Press.

Heaton, J. & Vallila-Rohter, S. (2015). Chapter 1: Anatomy and physiology of communication and swallowing. In A. Johnson & G. Lof (Eds.) PRAXIS: Speech-Language Pathology Examination Study Guide. Evanston: TherapyEd.

See curriculum vitae for complete list of publications and presentations.


BA, Romance Languages, UNC-Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC
MS, Linguistics, Georgetown University, Washington, DC
PhD, Speech and Hearing Biosciences and Technology, MIT, Cambridge, MA

Curriculum Vitae