Single-case designs are the most frequent research design for the intervention target areas of speech, language and literacy on speechBITE (Munro et al, 2013) (PDF 233 Kb). Given the preponderance of single-case intervention studies in speech and language pathology, there is a pressing need for an appraisal of the methodological rigour of these research designs.
In 2014, speechBITE aims to commence ratings of single-case designs by using the recently revised Risk of Bias in N of 1 Trials, or RoBiN-T, scale (Tate et al, 2013). As part of this objective, speechBITE will be using the classification system outlined by Tate et al (2013) to categorise papers into experimental and non-experimental single-case designs.
Experimental designs are those which use variants of the withdrawal/reversal design (e.g. ABA), multiple baseline designs, alternating treatment designs and changing criterion designs. Non-experimental designs include those that use a single phase or are bi-phasic only (eg. A-B), contain pre/post data only and case descriptions. Only experimental designs, also known as single-case experimental designs (SCEDs), will be rated using the RoBiN-T scale.