Research  |   May 2008
Using Semantic Feature Analysis to Improve Contextual Discourse in Adults With Aphasia
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Jill Davis Rider
    University of Kentucky, Lexington
  • Heather Harris Wright
    Arizona State University, Tempe
  • Judith L. Page
    University of Kentucky, Lexington
  • Contact author: Heather Harris Wright, Department of Speech and Hearing Science, Arizona State University, P.O. Box 870102, Tempe, AZ 85287-0102. E-mail: heather.wright.1@asu.edu.
Article Information
Normal Language Processing / Language Disorders / Aphasia
Research   |   May 2008
Using Semantic Feature Analysis to Improve Contextual Discourse in Adults With Aphasia
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, May 2008, Vol. 17, 161-172. doi:10.1044/1058-0360(2008/016)
History: Received November 13, 2006 , Accepted September 6, 2007
 
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, May 2008, Vol. 17, 161-172. doi:10.1044/1058-0360(2008/016)
History: Received November 13, 2006; Accepted September 6, 2007
Web of Science® Times Cited: 17

Purpose: Semantic feature analysis (SFA) was used to determine whether training contextually related words would improve the discourse of individuals with nonfluent aphasia in preselected contexts.

Method: A modified multiple-probes-across-behaviors design was used to train target words using SFA in 3 adults with nonfluent aphasia. Pretreatment, posttreatment, and follow-up sessions obtained language samples for the preselected contexts. Contexts included 4 story retellings and 4 procedure explanations.

Results: All participants improved naming ability for treated words. No generalization to untrained items was found. Within discourse samples, participants increased number of target words produced from pretreatment to posttreatment sessions but did not increase lexical diversity across samples. Participants maintained performance on standardized measures from the beginning to the end of the study.

Conclusions: Results support and extend previous research by indicating that SFA improves confrontational naming ability and may benefit word retrieval in discourse production of closed-set contexts.

Acknowledgments
This experiment was conducted as part of the first author’s master’s thesis. We express our appreciation to the individuals who volunteered as participants in the study. We also thank Kresta Wilson and Rachel Green for assistance with various aspects of the project.
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