Exploring the Link between Stuttering and Phonology: A Review and Implications for Treatment

The author notes that three lines of research have been pursued in the stuttering literature to study the link between phonology and stuttering: a) effects of phonological complexity on the loci of stutter events; b) outcome of standardized test measures in children who do and do not stutter; and c) studies of phonological encoding in children and adults who stutter. The aim of this review is to synthesize a summary of the findings from these three lines of research to address the purported link between phonology and stuttering and its potential implications for stuttering treatment. The present review is an evolutionary review of the relevant behavioral studies since the 1990’s in the three main areas of investigation. Results from the loci studies offer some support for the role of phonological complexity in the occurrence of stuttering. Studies of performance in standardized tests of phonology have not identified differences between children who do and do not stutter. Studies of phonological encoding have been equivocal in reporting differences between children and adults who stutter and those who do not stutter. Several cautions are raised in interpreting the findings from the discussed studies and despite the mixed findings, some implications for treatments are considered.

Sasisekaran, Jayanthi. (2014). Exploring the Link between Stuttering and Phonology: A Review and Implications for Treatment. Seminars in Speech and Language, 35, 95-113.

About rickyWburk

Ricky W. Burk, CCC-SLP, BCS-F, is a speech-language pathologist who provides in-home therapy for adolescents and adults residing in Tennessee and Mississippi who stutter. His career includes PreK, elementary, middle, and high school practice, undergraduate & graduate faculty appointments, skilled nursing, national & international consultation, private practice, and national & international speaking presentations. He holds the American Speech-Language Hearing Association Certificate of Clinical Competence, and he is a Board Certified Specialist in Fluency Disorders. He is the ASHA Continuing Education Administrator for the National Association for Speech Fluency.
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