Authors: Kiran S, Caplan D, Sandberg C, Levy J, Berardino A, Ascenso E, Villard S, Tripodis Y
Title: Development of a Theoretically Based Treatment for Sentence Comprehension Deficits in Individuals With Aphasia
Source: American Journal of Speech Language Pathology 2012 21(2): s88-s102
Year: 2012
Research Design: Single Case Design

Purpose: Two new treatments, 1 based on sentence to picture matching (SPM) and the other on object manipulation (OM), that train participants on the thematic roles of sentences using pictures or by manipulating objects were piloted. Method: Using a single-subject multiple-baseline design, sentence comprehension was trained on the affected sentence type in 1 task-related protocol in 15 participants with aphasia. The 2 tasks were SPM and OM; the treatment stimuli were object relatives, object clefts, passives, and unaccusatives, as well as two control structures -- object relatives with a complex noun phrase (NP) and active sentences with three NPs. Results: The criteria for efficacious treatment was an increase in the level of performance from the pretreatment probes to the posttreatment probes for the treated structure such that accuracy rose from at or below chance to above chance and either (a) accuracy rose by 33% or (b) the effect size was 2.6. Based on these criteria, the success rate for training the target structure was 2/6 participants in the SPM condition and 4/7 participants in the OM condition. Conclusion: The outcome of this study illustrates the utility of this theoretically motivated and efficacious treatment for sentence comprehension deficits in individuals with aphasia.

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