Authors: Law J, Sivyer S
Title: Promoting the communication skills of primary school children excluded from school or at risk of exclusion: an intervention study
Source: Child Language Teaching and Therapy 2003 19(1): 1-25
Year: 2003
Research Design: Non Randomised Controlled Trial
Rating Score: 04/10
This rating is confirmed
Eligibility specified - Y
Random allocation - N
Concealed allocation - N
Baseline comparability - Y
Blind subjects - N
Blind therapists - N
Blind assessors - Y
Adequate follow-up - N
Intention-to-treat analysis - N
Between-group comparisons - Y
Point estimates and variability - Y

Previous research has focused on the close association between speech and language difficulties and emotional and behavioural difficulties. However, little attempt has so far been made to examine this relationship in children with emotional or behavioural difficulties who are at risk of exclusion or who have been excluded from school. In particular there are no data on the impact of speech and language interventions on this group of children. This study tests the hypothesis that children with emotional or behavioural difficulties currently excluded from school or at risk of exclusion, receiving intervention for their language and communications skills, would make significant progress both in terms of language, self esteem and behaviour in relation to a comparison group. Children made significant progress as a result of treatment compared to no-treatment, in the areas of language and social communication skills, and self esteem. The data suggest that, in the short term at least, the type of intervention carried out had beneficial effects for the children concerned. Implications for practice for speech and language therapists and teachers working with this client group are also discussed.

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