Fluency Disorders

Topics: Stuttering, Speech and language pathology, Dyslexia Pages: 19 (6459 words) Published: November 18, 2010
Journal of Fluency Disorders 27 (2002) 187–201

The effect of fast speech rate on stuttering frequency during delayed auditory feedback Garen Sparks a,∗ , Dorothy E. Grant a , Kathleen Millay a , Delaina Walker-Batson a , Linda S. Hynan b b

Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, Texas Woman’s University, Dallas, TX, USA Department of Psychiatry, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX, USA Received 26 June 2000; received in revised form 1 October 2001; accepted 14 March 2002


Abstract Delayed auditory feedback (DAF) has been documented to improve fluency in those who stutter. The increased fluency has been attributed to the slowed speech rate induced by DAF, but recent experiments have suggested that increasing the speech rate may also decrease stuttering under DAF. This investigation described the effect of combining a fast speech rate and DAF on the fluency of four people who stutter. Fluency of the two mildly dysfluent subjects was the same for both no DAF and DAF conditions at normal and at fast oral reading rates. In contrast, the two severely dysfluent subjects improved in fluency from the no DAF to the DAF conditions. They were found to be dysfluent at both normal and fast oral reading rates without DAF. The results of the study point to the need for further research on the relationship between speech rate and stuttering frequency under conditions of DAF and no DAF. Educational objectives: Readers will learn about and be able to describe how the frequency of stuttering is affected by: (1) speech rates; (2) DAF; and (3) how stuttering severity influences such effects. © 2002 Elsevier Science Inc. All rights reserved. Keywords: Stuttering frequency; Normal and fast speech rates; Delayed auditory feedback; Non-altered auditory feedback

Corresponding author. Present address: Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, University of Texas at Dallas, 5349 Amesbury #504, Dallas, TX 75206, USA. E-mail address: garen@utdallas.edu (G. Sparks). 0094-730X/02/$ – see front matter © 2002 Elsevier Science Inc. All rights reserved. PII: S 0 0 9 4 - 7 3 0 X ( 0 2 ) 0 0 1 2 8 - 6


G. Sparks et al. / Journal of Fluency Disorders 27 (2002) 187–201

1. Introduction In his book The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, Kuhn (1970) explained that during the early development of a study paradigm, many researchers investigate the same phenomenon, yet form different interpretations of the data obtained and come to different conclusions regarding it. He further explained that ongoing investigation of any scientific question eventually exposes an irregularity, or an unexpected finding, which violates the investigator’s expected outcome of the experiment, causing more questions about the reigning model of thought on the issue. The exposure of an anomaly in the investigator’s paradigm creates a “crisis” which calls for a scientific revolution. Research investigating the phenomenon of stuttering therapy and the importance of the fluency enhancing effects of using the technique of delayed auditory feedback (DAF) has followed the path set forth by Kuhn and has recently created a “crisis.” The anomaly that has recently created the “crisis” in stuttering research can be found in reports about the influence of auditory feedback and its relationship to fluency enhancement. Initially, researchers were driven by the notion that auditory feedback deficits were causal to stuttering (Butler & Stanley, 1966; Mysak, 1960; Webster & Lubker, 1968; Wolf & Wolf, 1959; Yates, 1963). Many investigators attempted to explain that stuttering behavior could be reversed through the fluency enhancing effects of DAF. Despite the many suggestions that the cause of stuttering might be related to the individual’s auditory feedback abilities, interest in the study of the fluency enhancing effects of DAF has declined. Several reasons can be offered in explanation of the decline of interest related to the fluency enhancing...
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