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How AI is helping children overcome their speech disabilities

The idea immediately appealed to brothers Alex and Cosmin, who founded Ascendia after seeing how their mother, a teacher, struggled to meet all her students’ needs with limited resources. What started as a personal passion project has flourished in the last decade to become a multinational company operated by 33 staff in nine countries. So far, Ascendia has created over 1,100 hours of educational content supporting students, parents and teachers alike. As Cosmin Malureanu puts it, “our goal is to get teachers comfortable with new technologies, so they can prepare the next generation for the jobs of the future, not those of the past.”

With the support of Alex and Cosmin, Daniela and her team set about creating a solution to help children working to overcome their speech disabilities – a solution now known as Timlogo.

Timlogo is an interactive, digital speech development tool that uses artificial intelligence (AI) to analyse children’s pronunciation and diagnose their specific speech issues, and then recommend the most relevant course of exercises to correct these. The tool’s offering also learns and adapts over time, meaning that as children improve, the suggested exercises evolve too.

Most importantly, Timlogo is designed to be fun, integrating games, characters and stories that spark a child’s imagination and hold their attention. Teacher and speech therapist Dragan Georgeta explains: “Many children become anxious when they struggle to pronounce certain sounds. But in Timlogo, they are introduced to cartoon characters who tell a story around each sound and encourage them to join in and attempt to pronounce it.” This gamification creates a feeling of inclusion and boosts children’s confidence, something that is key when it comes to overcoming speech difficulties.

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