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Is simulation-based training suitable for speech-language pathology?

Simulation-based learning is not unknown in speech-language pathology training. Across the clinical spectrum it does seem to be very effective, too, and is catching on widely.

One place it has not been evaluated until recently is in therapy for people who stutter. An Australian study (Penman A, et al., Int J Lang Commun Disord. 2021 Nov;56(6):1334-1346. doi: 10.1111/1460-6984.12670) has just remedied this, with a trial of speech-language pathology students (n=114) assessed against a tool now in development, the Standardised Patient Interview Rating Scale for Stuttering (SPIRS-Stuttering). Using this tool over consecutive simulated settings, and evaluating content validity, intra-rater reliability and internal consistency of the tool along the way, students demonstrated a statistically significant improvement in stuttering clinical skills between sessions 1 and 4; good content validity was achieved for the SPIRS-Stuttering tool, with a low level of intra-rater reliability and variable internal consistency.

The conclusion? Simulation is a warranted learning modality in training curricula. More broadly, the investigating team note, students value simulation in general, because it provides what they feel is a safe environment for learning.

MyoNews from BreatheWorksTM is a report on trends and developments in oromyofunctional disorder and therapy. These updates are not intended as diagnosis, treatment, cure or prevention of any disease or syndrome.

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