On the Importance of Scientific Rhetoric in Stuttering: A Reply to Finn, Bothe, and Bramlett (2005) Purpose To refute the alleged practice of “pseudoscience” by P. Finn, A. K. Bothe, and R. E. Bramlett (2005)  and to illustrate their experimental and systematic bias when evaluating the SpeechEasy, an altered auditory feedback device used in the management of stuttering. Method We challenged the experimental design ... Letter to the Editor
Letter to the Editor  |   February 01, 2007
On the Importance of Scientific Rhetoric in Stuttering: A Reply to Finn, Bothe, and Bramlett (2005)
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Joseph Kalinowski
    East Carolina University, Greenville, NC
  • Tim Saltuklaroglu
    University of Tennessee, Knoxville
  • Andrew Stuart
    East Carolina University
  • Vijaya K. Guntupalli
    East Carolina University
  • Disclosure Statement
    Disclosure Statement×
    Joseph Kalinowski and Andrew Stuart, who are coinventors of the SpeechEasy, have a financial interest in the form of minority ownership of nonvoting stock in Janus Development, the company that manufactures the SpeechEasy device.
    Joseph Kalinowski and Andrew Stuart, who are coinventors of the SpeechEasy, have a financial interest in the form of minority ownership of nonvoting stock in Janus Development, the company that manufactures the SpeechEasy device.×
  • Contact author: Joseph Kalinowski, Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, Health Science Building, East Carolina University, Greenville, NC 27858-4353. E-mail: kalinowskij@ecu.edu.
  • Vijaya K. Guntupalli is now at East Tennessee State University in Johnson City.
    Vijaya K. Guntupalli is now at East Tennessee State University in Johnson City.×
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Fluency Disorders / Letters to the Editor
Letter to the Editor   |   February 01, 2007
On the Importance of Scientific Rhetoric in Stuttering: A Reply to Finn, Bothe, and Bramlett (2005)
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, February 2007, Vol. 16, 69-76. doi:10.1044/1058-0360(2007/009)
History: Received December 13, 2005 , Revised April 12, 2006 , Accepted June 26, 2006
 
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, February 2007, Vol. 16, 69-76. doi:10.1044/1058-0360(2007/009)
History: Received December 13, 2005; Revised April 12, 2006; Accepted June 26, 2006
Web of Science® Times Cited: 1

Purpose To refute the alleged practice of “pseudoscience” by P. Finn, A. K. Bothe, and R. E. Bramlett (2005)  and to illustrate their experimental and systematic bias when evaluating the SpeechEasy, an altered auditory feedback device used in the management of stuttering.

Method We challenged the experimental design that led to the seemingly predetermined outcome of pseudoscience rather than science: Limited preselected literature was submitted to a purposely sampled panel of judges (i.e., their own students). Each criterion deemed pseudoscientific was contested with published peer-reviewed data illustrating the importance of good rhetoric, testability, and logical outcomes from decades of scientific research.

Conclusions Stuttering is an involuntary disorder that is highly resistant to therapy. Altered auditory feedback is a derivation of choral speech (nature’s most powerful stuttering “inhibitor”) that can be synergistically combined with other methods for optimal stuttering inhibition. This approach is logical considering that in stuttering no single treatment is universally helpful. Also, caution is suggested when attempting to differentiate science from pseudoscience in stuttering treatments using the criteria employed by Finn et al. For example, evaluating behavioral therapy outcomes implements a post hoc or untestable system. Speech outcome (i.e., stuttered or fluent speech) determines success or failure of technique use, placing responsibility for failure on those who stutter.

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