Blog Archives

Neural circuitry associated with two different approaches to novel word learning

Skilled reading depends upon successfully integrating orthographic, phonological, and semantic information; however, the process of becoming a skilled reader with efficient neural circuitry is not fully understood. Short-term learning paradigms can provide insight into learning mechanisms by revealing differential responses to training approaches. To date, neuroimaging studies have primarily focused on effects of teaching novel words either in isolation or in context, without directly comparing the two. The current study compared the behavioral and neurobiological effects of learning novel pseudowords (i.e., pronouncing and attaching meaning) trained either in isolation or in sentential context. Behavioral results showed generally comparable pseudoword learning for both conditions, but sentential context-trained pseudowords were spoken and comprehended slightly more quickly. Neurobiologically, fMRI activity for reading trained pseudowords was similar to real words; however, an interaction between training approach and reading proficiency was observed. Specifically, highly skilled readers showed similar levels of activity regardless of training approach. However, less skilled readers differentiated between training conditions, showing comparable activity to highly skilled readers only for isolation-trained pseudowords. Overall, behavioral and neurobiological findings suggest that training approach may affect rate of learning and neural circuitry, and that less skilled readers may need explicit training to develop optimal neural pathways.

from Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience

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Spectrographic analysis of the voice: effect of visual training on the reliability of evaluation

CONCLUSION: Visual training improved inter and intra-observers reliability in spectrograms interpretation.

from Revista de Sociedade Brasileira de Fonoaudiologia

Effect of Nonlinguistic Auditory Training on Phonological and Reading Skills

Conclusion: The results suggest a link between verbal and nonverbal skills, in addition to corroborating studies regarding the existence of a critical learning period.

from Folia Phoniatrica et Logopaedica

Written Language Disorders: Speech-Language Pathologists’ Training, Knowledge, and Confidence

Conclusion: Our findings provide information about SLPs’ training, knowledge, and confidence about written language beyond anecdotal reports and fill research gaps regarding SLPs’ preservice and professional development needs. Predictors of confidence are discussed.

from Language, Speech and Hearing Services in Schools

Transfer of Task-Switching Training in Older Age: The Role of Verbal Processes

This study investigated the influence of verbal self-instructions (VSI) on the transfer of task-switching training in older adults (56–78 years). We applied an internally cued switching paradigm in a pretest–training–posttest design. Training-related improvements were not modulated by VSI. Transfer (the pretest–posttest reduction of switch costs) was most pronounced when participants applied the VSI at posttest after practicing the switching task without VSI. The results indicate that in contrast to transfer of executive control training, transfer of (verbal) strategy training seems to be limited and that VSI is most beneficial when the task-switching abilities are already well practiced.

from Psychology and Aging

Social care for deafblind children and adults 2009

Aims: This guidance is issued under Section 7 of the Local Authority Social Services Act 1970. (This means that Local Authorities must follow it unless there are exceptional reasons not to do so.) The guidance is relevant to all local social services staff and requires specific actions to be taken such as identifying and keeping records on deafblind people in catchment areas.

Intended audience: Social services staff, support workers.

Publication history information: Published 23 June 2009.

Access: Available to the general public.

from the National Library for Health

Cleft Audit Protocol for Speech (CAPS-A): a comprehensive training package for speech analysis

Methods & Procedures: Thirty-six specialist speech and language therapists undertook the training programme over four days. This consisted of two days’ training on the CAPS-A tool followed by a third day, making independent ratings and transcriptions on ten new cases which had been previously recorded during routine audit data collection. This task was repeated on day 4, a minimum of one month later. Ratings were made using the CAPS-A record form with the CAPS-A definition table. An analysis was made of the speech and language therapists’ CAPS-A ratings at occasion 1 and occasion 2 and the intra- and inter-rater reliability calculated.

Outcomes & Results: Trained therapists showed consistency in individual judgements on specific sections of the tool. Intraclass correlation coefficients were calculated for each section with good agreement on eight of 13 sections. There were only fair levels of agreement on anterior oral cleft speech characteristics, non-cleft errors/immaturities and voice. This was explained, at least in part, by their low prevalence which affects the calculation of the intraclass correlation coefficient statistic.

Conclusions & Implications: Speech and language therapists benefited from training on the CAPS-A, focusing on specific aspects of speech using definitions of parameters and scalar points, in order to apply the tool systematically and reliably. Ratings are enhanced by ensuring a high degree of attention to the nature of the data, standardizing the speech sample, data acquisition, the listening process together with the use of high-quality recording and playback equipment. In addition, a method is proposed for maintaining listening skills following training as part of an individual’s continuing education.

from the International Journal of Language and Communication Disorders

Establishing a Public School Dysphagia Program: A Model for Administration and Service Provision.

Conclusion: SLPs should be proactive in providing dysphagia services to students in the schools. A procedure that is adopted by a school system for all of its employees to follow will offer direction and guidance. This system-supported procedure may provide assurance that dysphagia services are being provided in a professionally acceptable manner. Ongoing staff development and training is essential. A system can implement dysphagia services using existing staff, when possible, and policies and procedures that have been approved by the system. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]

from Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools

Training and Self-Reported Confidence for Dysphagia Management Among Speech-Language Pathologists in the Schools.

Conclusion: Findings support continuing education as a correlate to self-reported confidence to treat dysphagia in the school setting among SLPs in Virginia and its contiguous states. Further research is merited to ascertain if these findings reflect national trends. Quantifiable, costeffective, and evidenced-based dysphagia training, consultancy, and management models are needed if school-based SLPs are to meet the increasing challenges of their diverse caselo

from Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools

Treatment for lexical retrieval using abstract and concrete words in persons with aphasia: Effect of complexity

Conclusions: The results of the present experiment support our hypothesis that training abstract words would result in greater learning and generalisation to untrained concrete words. They also tentatively support the idea that generalisation is facilitated by treatment focusing on more complex constructions (Kiran & Thompson, 2003; Thompson, Shapiro, Kiran, & Sobecks, 2003).

from Aphasiology

Cleft Audit Protocol for Speech (CAPS-A): a comprehensive training package for speech analysis

from the International Journal of Language and Communication Disorders

Conclusions & Implications: Speech and language therapists benefited from training on the CAPS-A, focusing on specific aspects of speech using definitions of parameters and scalar points, in order to apply the tool systematically and reliably. Ratings are enhanced by ensuring a high degree of attention to the nature of the data, standardizing the speech sample, data acquisition, the listening process together with the use of high-quality recording and playback equipment. In addition, a method is proposed for maintaining listening skills following training as part of an individual’s continuing education.

Cleft Audit Protocol for Speech (CAPS-A): a comprehensive training package for speech analysis

from the International Journal of Language and Communication Disorders

Background: The previous literature has largely focused on speech analysis systems and ignored process issues, such as the nature of adequate speech samples, data acquisition, recording and playback. Although there has been recognition of the need for training on tools used in speech analysis associated with cleft palate, little attention has been paid to this issue.

Aims: To design, execute, and evaluate a training programme for speech and language therapists on the systematic and reliable use of the Cleft Audit Protocol for Speech-Augmented (CAPS-A), addressing issues of standardized speech samples, data acquisition, recording, playback, and listening guidelines.

Methods & Procedures: Thirty-six specialist speech and language therapists undertook the training programme over four days. This consisted of two days’ training on the CAPS-A tool followed by a third day, making independent ratings and transcriptions on ten new cases which had been previously recorded during routine audit data collection. This task was repeated on day 4, a minimum of one month later. Ratings were made using the CAPS-A record form with the CAPS-A definition table. An analysis was made of the speech and language therapists’ CAPS-A ratings at occasion 1 and occasion 2 and the intra- and inter-rater reliability calculated.

Outcomes & Results: Trained therapists showed consistency in individual judgements on specific sections of the tool. Intraclass correlation coefficients were calculated for each section with good agreement on eight of 13 sections. There were only fair levels of agreement on anterior oral cleft speech characteristics, non-cleft errors/immaturities and voice. This was explained, at least in part, by their low prevalence which affects the calculation of the intraclass correlation coefficient statistic.

Conclusions & Implications: Speech and language therapists benefited from training on the CAPS-A, focusing on specific aspects of speech using definitions of parameters and scalar points, in order to apply the tool systematically and reliably. Ratings are enhanced by ensuring a high degree of attention to the nature of the data, standardizing the speech sample, data acquisition, the listening process together with the use of high-quality recording and playback equipment. In addition, a method is proposed for maintaining listening skills following training as part of an individual’s continuing education.

What type of computer-assisted exercise supports young less skilled spellers in resolving problems in open and closed syllable words?

from Annals of Dyslexia

Abstract Dutch bisyllabic words containing open and closed syllables are particularly difficult to spell for children. What kind of support in spelling exercises improves the spelling of these words the most? Two extensions of a commonly used dictation exercise were tested: less skilled spellers in grade 2 (n = 50; 7 years and 10 months) either received explicit syllabic segmentation cues or received spelling cues by means of a visual preview. Comparisons between pre-, post-, and retention tests of spelling skill showed that extra syllabic cues did not show a significant improvement beyond normal spelling dictation and that visual preview was most effective as compared to the other types of training. The findings suggest that word-specific knowledge can effectively be improved by exposure to the correct letter pattern during exercises in spelling and seems to result in lasting improvement of word-specific orthographic representations, at least for 5 weeks.

Preparation, Clinical Support, and Confidence of Speech-Language Pathologists Managing Clients With a Tracheostomy in Australia

from the American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology

Purpose: To describe the preparation and training, clinical support, and confidence of speech-language pathologists (SLPs) in relation to tracheostomy client care in Australia.

Method: A survey was sent to 90 SLPs involved in tracheostomy management across Australia. The survey contained questions relating to preparation and training, clinical support, and confidence.

Results: The response rate was high (76%). The majority of SLPs were pursuing a range of professional development activities, had clinical support available, and felt confident providing care of clients with tracheostomies. Despite these findings, 45% of SLPs were not up-to-date with evidence-based practice, less than 30% were knowledgeable of the advances in tracheostomy tube technology, and only 16% felt they worked as part of an optimal team. Only half were confident and had clinical support for managing clients who were ventilated. Most (88%) believed additional training opportunities would be beneficial.

Conclusions: The current data highlight issues for health care facilities and education providers to address regarding the training and support needs of SLPs providing tracheostomy client care.