Clinical Decision Making in the Treatment of Children with Vowel Disorders
This study addresses the current clinical decision making within Speech and Language Therapy (SLT) practice, regarding children with vowel disorders, seeking to find out why they are rarely treated in clinical practice. Disorders of the vowel system have implications on speech intelligibility, yet are rarely treated in clinical practice. Vowel disorders remain an under-researched topic within the literature, containing little information on areas relating to assessment, treatment and guidance. The study takes the format of an extended research proposal, incorporating a mixed method design protocol; including both quantitative and qualitative techniques to collect data. The proposal will employ a questionnaire based data collection technique, which is suitable for online completion. The questionnaire is designed to describe practices regarding assessment, transcription, therapy approaches, confidence and guidance for children with vowel disorders. The questionnaire will also require SLTs to demonstrate competency by completing practical tasks surrounding knowledge of vowels. This methodological approach will provide results both objectively and performance based. Having knowledge of clinical decision making in the area of vowel disorders, allows for changes to be made to improve any weak areas of SLT treatment which have been highlighted, such as improved training, making this study a valuable contribution to the field.