External Evidence

New and exciting studies are constantly being published, and the ISHA Evidence-Based Practice Committee would like to make sure you know about them!  When a new issue of an ASHA Journal is published, the EBP committee will highlight some interesting studies for you and provide the link to access the article through the ASHA website.

February 2024 Highlighted Study:

Beyond Scores: Using Converging Evidence to Determine Speech and Language Services Eligibility for Dual Language Learners

Published August 4, 2020

Castilla-Earls and colleagues (2020) provide a framework for using converging evidence from multiple sources to determine speech and language eligibility for dual language learners. First, interview parents and teachers about communication concerns and children’s experience with each language. Parent concern is an important red flag. Next, collect bilingual speech and language samples to obtain information that can be compared across languages. Percent grammatical utterances alongside parent concern provides important diagnostic information. Then, observe children’s learning potential using dynamic assessment. Dynamic assessment, using a test-teach-retest format, allows for observation of children’s gains from pretest to posttest well as their reactions during the teaching itself. Finally, administer standardized tests with caution while considering information about test properties from the manual. Use all the pieces of evidence that you have collected when making your clinical decisions.  

Castilla-Earls, A., Bedore, L., Rojas, R., Fabiano-Smith, L., Pruitt-Lord, S., Restrepo, M. A., & Peña, E. (2020). Beyond scores: Using converging evidence to determine speech and language services eligibility for dual language learners. American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 29(3), 1116-1132.

December 2023 Highlighted Study: 

"The Adverse Effects and Events of Thickened Liquid Use in Adults: A Systematic Review" by Abrams et al. 

Published September 11, 2023

To thicken or not to thicken? In this month's article of interest, Abrams and colleagues (2023) investigate the potential adverse outcomes of using thickener to manage dysphagia. Out of the 33 studies that met the inclusion criteria, 55% reported decreased quality of life, 33% reported aspiration of thickened liquids and 15% reported dehydration. Does this motivate you to trial more compensatory strategies during your instrumental swallowing evaluations to avoid the thickened liquids? Drop a comment telling us why or why not!

November 2023 Highlighted Study: 

Taking Langauge Samples Home: Feasibility, Reliability, and Validity of Child Language Samples Conducted Remotely With Video Chat Versus In-person 

published in December 14, 2020

How reliable are language samples collected via telehealth?

Manning and colleagues (2020) compared language samples from caregiver-child play recorded in the clinic setting, with those recorded at home, via videochat. The speech and language characteristics used by the children did not differ between these contexts, nor did the percent of intelligible utterances, suggesting that language sampling in telehealth contexts yields equivalent information to that seen in clinic. The best news is that the telehealth samples were collected using a platform of the family's choosing! This means that our telehealth assessments are gaining equivalence to our in-person evaluations. 

Previously highlighted studies: 

Byiers, B.J., Reichle, J. & Symons, F.J. (2016).Single-subject experimental design for evidence-based practice. American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 21, 397-414. This article provides guidance on how to interpret the strength of evidence provided by single-subject experimental designs and design such studies. Many areas of clinical practice rely on single-subject designs as a critical component of empirical support for interventions.

Turkstea, L., Norman, R., Whyte, J., Diijkers, M., & Hart, T. (2016). Knowing what we’re doing: Why specification of treatment methods is critical for evidence-based practice in speech-language pathology. American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 25, 164-171. This article outlines the importance of documenting specific treatment methodology within the RTT framework, and how using such a framework may augment more reliable and consistent clinical practices.

Theodoros, D.G., Hill, A.J., & Russell, T.G. (2016). Clinical and quality of life outcomes of speech treatment for Parkinson’s Disease delivered to the home via telerehabilitation: A noninferiority randomized controlled trial. American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 25, 214-232.

Kent, R. D. (2015). Nonspeech oral movements and oral motor disorders: A narrative review. American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 24(4), 763-789. This narrative review presented the current research on nonspeech oral movements and their controversial application in assessment and treatment of a variety of clinical conditions, such as assessment and treatment of speech disorders and feeding difficulties.

Rezzonico, S., Hipfner-Boucher, K., Milburn, T., Weitzman, E., Greenberg, J., Pelletier, J., & Girolametto, L. (2015). Involving preschool educators’ interactive shared book reading: Effects of coaching in professional development. American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 24(4), 717-732. This research study showed that coaching educators on interactive shared book reading had a direct impact on the quality and complexity of the children’s language.

Brady, N.C., Storkel, H.L., Bushness, P., Barker, M., Saunders, D.D., & Fleming, K. (2015). Investigating a multimodal intervention for children with limited expressive vocabularies associated with autism. American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 24, 438-459. This new treatment study showed how combining AAC and speech sound practice resulted in gains in children with autism. This intervention package may be a nice option for children with autism who have limited expressive vocabularies.

Hall-Mills, S., & Apel, K. (2015). Linguistic feature development across grades and genre in elementary writing. Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, 46, 242-255.  This article provides a great review into written language in school-age children and documents the progression of various elements of writing across grades 2-4. Data from this article can help support clinical decisions regarding written language, specifically within the context of the Common Core State Standards.