Key Characteristics of CAS | A Gift of Speech

Childhood Apraxia of Speech, CAS

Childhood Apraxia of Speech is a speech sound disorder that is believed to be caused by a disruption in the motor planning or programming for speech.  There have been disagreements in the etiology and characteristics of the disorder.  The information below was developed by CASANA and

Characteristics of Childhood Apraxia of Speech CAS from

  • Limited repertoire of vowels; decreased differentiation with vowel productions; errors, especially distortions
  • Variability of errors in sounds – may create a b for a d in one situation or a t for a d in another.
  • Unusual error patterns
  • Errors increase with length or complexity of utterances.  A child maybe able to create a sound in a simple one syllable word, but not with a 2-3 syllable word.
  • The position and context of a sound may increase/decrease production accuracy.  A child may be able to produce the target utterance in one position of a word with specific sounds before and after but is unable to produce the same target accurately in a different location/context .
  •  Volitional speech is often more challenging than automatic speech and/or modeled speech.
  • Impaired rate/accuracy on diodochokinetic tasks 
(pa/pa/pa) and/or (pa/ta/ka)
  • Prosodic disturbances including rate, timing of sounds, and pauses between and within syllables may create the perception of “choppy” or monotone speech.
  • Groping or physical struggle for articulatory positions.  This may not always be present at the evaluation, but may be seen during therapy.
  • May also demonstrate “impaired volitional nonspeech movements (oral apraxia)”

“Key Characteristics of CAS” retrieved from

Other Characteristics of CAS

  • Poor speech intelligibility
  • Delayed onset of speech
  • Limited babbling as an infant
  • Restricted sound inventory
  • Loss of apparently previously spoken words

About CASANA – Apraxia-kids:  CASANA is the Childhood Apraxia of Speech Association of North America.  They are dedicated to supporting children with CAS.  The information on their site is peer reviewed by professions and is a phenomenal resource for families and clinicians like myself.