Authors: Fey ME, Finestack LH, Gajewski BJ, Popescu M, Lewine JD
Title: A Preliminary Evaluation of Fast ForWord-Language as an Adjuvant Treatment in Language Intervention
Source: Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research 2010 53(2): 430-449
Year: 2010
Research Design: Randomised Controlled Trial
Rating Score: 06/10
This rating is confirmed
Eligibility specified - Y
Random allocation - Y
Concealed allocation - Y
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

Purpose: Fast ForWord-Language (FFW-L) is designed to enhance children's processing of auditory-verbal signals and, thus, their ability to learn language. As a preliminary evaluation of this claim, we examined the effects of a 5-week course of FFW-L as an adjuvant treatment with a subsequent 5-week conventional narrative-based language intervention (NBLI) that targeted narrative comprehension and production and grammatical output. Method: Twenty-three children 6-8 years of age with language impairments were assigned randomly to 1 of 3 intervention sequences: (a) FFW-L/NBLI, (b) NBLI/FFW-L, or (c) wait/NBLI. We predicted that after both treatment periods, the FFW-L/NBLI group would show greater gains on measures of narrative ability, conversational grammar, and nonword repetition than the other groups. Results: After the first 5-week study period, the intervention groups, taken together (i.e., FFW-L/NBLI and NBLI/FFW-L), significantly outperformed the no-treatment wait/NBLI group on 2 narrative measures. At the final test period, all 3 groups displayed significant time-related effects on measures of narrative ability, but there were no statistically significant between-groups effects of intervention sequence. Conclusions: This preliminary study provides no evidence to support the claim that FFW-L enhances children's response to a conventional language intervention.

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