Barbara Hodson Cycle Approach

Barbara Hodson Cycle Approach: The Cycle Approach, developed by Barbara Hodson, is designed to address the unique needs of individuals with complex communication disorders, particularly those with highly specialized vocabulary demands. Hodson’s approach comprises several phases that revolve around targeted vocabulary cycles.

Table of Content

  1. Introduction
  2. The Cycle Approach
    1. Cycle Approach Applications
    2. Cycle Approach Steps
  3. Comparing Core Vocabulary and Cycle Approaches
  4. Conclusion
  5. FAQs about Barbara Hodson Cycle Approach
  6. References

The Cycle Approach

The Cycle Approach complements the Core Vocabulary Approach. It introduces additional vocabulary to expand an individual’s communication capabilities once core vocabulary words are mastered. 

Incorporating New Words: The Cycle Approach introduces new words and phrases systematically. These words are selected based on the individual’s interests and needs, allowing for personalized language development.

Cycle Approach Applications

Implementing these language-learning approaches depends on various factors, including the individual’s age, communication disorder, and specific goals. Consulting a speech-language pathologist is crucial to determine the most suitable approach.

Cycle Approach Steps


Barbara Hodson Cycle Approach

The Cycle Approach consists of the following phases: 

Step 1: Vocabulary Selection

Identify specific vocabulary needs based on the individual’s communication goals.

Step 2: Vocabulary Teaching

Teach the selected vocabulary items intensively, incorporating various activities.

Step 3: Vocabulary Use

Encourage the practical application of newly learned vocabulary in real-life scenarios.

Step 4: Vocabulary Expansion

Expand the vocabulary to include additional words and phrases as communication skills develop.

Comparing Core Vocabulary and Cycle Approaches

While both approaches aim to enhance language skills, the Core Vocabulary Approach emphasizes simplicity and a limited set of words, whereas the Cycle Approach caters to individuals with specialized vocabulary requirements. Choosing the right approach depends on the individual’s unique needs and goals.

Choosing the Right Approach

The choice between the Core Vocabulary Approach and the Cycle Approach should be based on individual requirements. It’s essential to consider factors such as the individual’s communication goals, the complexity of their vocabulary needs, and their age. Consulting a professional is the best way to make an informed decision. 


In the realm of language development for individuals with communication disorders, the Core Vocabulary Approach and the Cycle Approach both offer valuable strategies. The Core Vocabulary Approach simplifies language learning by focusing on a core set of words, while the Cycle Approach, pioneered by Barbara Hodson, addresses the unique needs of individuals with complex vocabulary requirements. Ultimately, the choice between these approaches should be tailored to the individual’s specific needs and goals.

FAQs about Barbara Hodson Cycle Approach

  1. Which approach is better for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD)?

The choice between the Core Vocabulary Approach and the Cycle Approach for children with ASD depends on their individual communication needs. Some may benefit from the simplicity of the Core Vocabulary Approach, while others with more specialized vocabulary requirements may find the Cycle Approach more suitable. 

  1. Can these approaches be used for adults with communication disorders?

Yes, both approaches can be adapted for adults with communication disorders. The choice between them should be based on the individual’s specific communication goals and requirements. 

  1. Are there any online resources for learning these approaches?

Yes, there are several online resources, courses, and materials available for learning and implementing both the Core Vocabulary Approach and the Cycle Approach. It’s advisable to consult speech-language professionals for guidance on choosing appropriate resources. 

  1. How long does it typically take to see improvement using these approaches?

The timeline for improvement varies from individual to individual. Consistent practice and guidance from speech-language professionals are essential for optimal results.


  • SPEECH CORRECTION An Introduction to Speech Pathology and Audiology 9th Edition Charles Van Riper [Book]
  • Articulation and Phonological disorder Speech Sound Disorders in Children 8th Edition – John E Bernthal [Book]
  • Assessment in Speech Language Pathology A Resource Manual 5th Edition, Kenneth G. Shipley, Julie G. McAfee [Book]
  • Manual on Developing Communication Skill in Mentally Retarded Persons T.A. Subba Rao [Book]

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Barbara Hodson Cycle Approach


December 19, 2023

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