A Preliminary Comparison of In-Person and Telepractice Evaluations of Stuttering.

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American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology

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Purpose The purpose of this study was to compare in-person and telepractice evaluations of stuttering with adult participants. The research questions were as follows: Is an evaluation for stuttering via telepractice equivalent to an in-person evaluation in terms of (a) duration of individual evaluation tasks and overall length of the evaluation, (b) clinical outcomes across evaluating clinicians, and (c) participant experience? Method Participants were 14 adults who stutter (males = 11; age range: 20-68) who were simultaneously assessed via telepractice and in-person. Comprehensive evaluations included analysis of the speaker's stuttering, evaluation of the speaker's perceptions and attitudes about stuttering, and language testing. Evaluations were administered by either an in-person clinician or a telepractice clinician but were simultaneously scored by both clinicians. Participants were randomly assigned to the in-person-led assessment condition or the telepractice-led assessment condition. Results No statistically significant differences were found between the in-person and telepractice-led evaluations in terms of overall evaluation task duration, evaluation clinical outcomes, or participants' reported experiences. That is, telepractice evaluations for stuttering in adults may be an equivalent option to in-person evaluations. Conclusions Results of this preliminary study indicate that telepractice evaluations of stuttering may be comparable to in-person evaluations in terms of duration, clinical outcomes, and participant experiences. The current study supports the notion that telepractice evaluations may be a viable option for adult clients who stutter. Clinical considerations and future directions for research are discussed.


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