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Exploring the Viability of Exposure to Stories of Individuals Who Stutter as a Learning Tool

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  • Background A large body of literature suggests that individuals who stutter, (“IWS”), are subjected to negative stereotypical attitudes and perceptions held by speech language pathologists (“SLPs”). Although there has been improvement in SLPs’ perceptions of IWS, there continues to be a need to provide student SLPs with first hand experiences with stuttering to facilitate the development of an empathic understanding of the impact of stuttering. A new method was investigated by Connatty et al. (2010), (the “Connatty study”) to engender in student SLPs an empathic understanding of the impact of stuttering. The Connatty study used qualitative methods in which the student SLPs were researcher-participants. Participants used reflective journaling to record their reactions as they viewed video-recordings of IWS. The author was a participant in the Connatty study during the data collection and reflection summary phases only. Her data was used in the Connatty study’s thematic analysis completed by the remaining participants. Purpose The purpose of this study is to provide a nuanced understanding of the individual reflections of a student SLP (i.e., the author) who participated in the Connatty study and to examine the congruence between the author’s summarized reflections and the thematic results of the Connatty study. Conclusion The author concluded that viewing video-recordings of IWS talking about stuttering is a viable method for developing in student SLPs an empathic understanding of stuttering and of IWS. She also indicated that the project helped her to develop an empathetic understanding of IWS. Congruency with the Connatty study is discussed.

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    Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 International