The purpose of the current study was to investigate sympathetic arousal of young children who do and do not stutter during a stressful picture-naming task under instructions to name pictures as rapidly as possible. Findings indicated that, when chronological age was not taken into account, there was no between-group difference in tonic skin conductance level. When age was taken into account, however, there was a significant talker group × age group interaction, with follow-up analyses indicating that 3-year-old CWS exhibited significantly higher sympathetic arousal than their CWNS peers, and their 4-year-old CWNS peers. Findings were taken to be consistent with non-physiological results indicating an association between emotional processes and childhood stuttering. This association, at least for this cross-sectional study of tonic skin conductance level (SCL) during a picture-naming task, was moderated by children’s chronological age. Such developmental differences may be associated with various processes, for example, attention, cognition, or physiology, or some combination of two or more of these processes.
Zengin-Bolatkale, Hatun, Conture, Edward G., and Walden, Tedra A. (2015). Sympathetic arousal of young children who stutter during a stressful picture naming task. Journal of Fluency Disorder. doi:10.1016/j.jfludis.2015.07.005