University of Limerick
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No training required? ̶ Effectiveness of an input-based home programme for speech sound disorders

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posted on 2013-12-20, 14:41 authored by Simone Sheils
Background: The majority of a speech and language therapist’s (SLTs) caseload is comprised of children with phonological delays and disorders (Dodd, 2005). Resource limitations in Ireland and the U.K result in children waiting an average of 1 year for speech and language therapy (HSE 2009). There is a need for alternative methods of service delivery which can support early intervention. A novel input-based home programme which does not need parent training would enable prompt treatment with reduced resources. Aim: To investigate the efficacy of a novel input-based home programme, on the speech accuracy of children with a phonological delay and consistent phonological disorder. Methodology: 13 children (aged 3;3 to 5;9), with phonological delay or consistent phonological disorder, along with their parents took part in this study. The novel home programme consisted of input-based phonological contrast therapy, phonological awareness activities and elements of a whole language approach. It was parent led for 15 minutes a day, six days a week for five weeks. Results: Statical analysis demonstrated statistically significance improvements in reduced omissions. No statistical significance was recorded for substitutions, additions, methathesis or increases to phonemic inventories. The home programme proved to more effective on structural rather than substitutional processes. Due to the limited impact on the phonological system of the participants, this is not considered clinically significant. Conclusion: Results are not clinically significant and the outcomes do not compare with that expected to be achieved in the same period by clinician directed therapy. Treatment for phonological delays/disorders are typically production based. However, the current home programme was input-based to enable prompt treatment with reduced resources. The role of input based activities towards stimulating phonological change must be further investigated. Further research using a larger sample size is also required to strengthen the evidence for an input based home programme.



  • Master (Research)

First supervisor

Wright, Aileen





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