Building on Residual Speech: A Portable Processing Prosthesis for AphasiaBy Linebarger, Marcia C.; Romania, John F.; Fink, Ruth B.; Bartlett, Megan R.; Schwartz, Myrna F.; Journal of Rehabilitation Research and Development, Vol. 45, No. 9, pp. 1401-1414
Publication Date: 2008
Paper describes the development of a portable speech-generating device for people with mild to moderate aphasia. SentenceShaper To Go, implemented on a personal digital assistant (PDA), was designed to interface with SentenceShaper, a computerized “processing prosthesis” which allows the user to record spoken sentence fragments and combine them into larger structures. The stored sentence fragments are displayed on the computer screen as bean-shaped buttons which, when clicked, play the fragment back. The fragments are assembled into sentences by clicking selected “beans” and dragging them to a Sentence Assembly Area; completed sentences are then transferred to a Narrative Assembly Area. The user assembles the sentences to be used in the handheld device via the Handheld Customization Tool screen accessed from within SentenceShaper and downloads them onto the PDA, where they can be played back via 8 buttons. SentenceShaper To Go was tested in a proof-of-concept experiment with a 41-year-old man with mild aphasia resulting from stroke. The device was tested in 3 modes: (1) Unaided, spontaneous speech; (2) Spoken sentences created on SentenceShaper; and (3) Spontaneous speech aided and/or supplemented by the handheld device. Results showed participant was able to create more informative messages on SentenceShaper than he could produce spontaneously, and his retellings of these messages when self-cued by the handheld device were generally more informative than his unaided speech. Increases in fluency were also observed in both aided modes. Implications for further development of SentenceShaper To Go are discussed.
VA Rehabilitation Research & Development Service (Web Site: http://www.rehab.research.va.gov )
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