Contersational contribution between AAC users and typically speaking partners

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Authors
Tsai, Meng-Ju
Advisors
Scherz, Julie W.
Issue Date
2009-12
Type
Dissertation
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Abstract

The purpose of this study was to investigate the contributions of conversation dyads involving individuals who use augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) devices and their typically speaking conversation partners, which were analyzed by counting conversation turns and by counting attributed speaking roles (i.e., animator, author, and principal) (Goffman, 1981). Another purpose of this study was to compare the conversational contributions made across familiar and unfamiliar of conversation dyads using the same measures. Three individuals who use AAC and 27 typically speaking conversation partners participated in this study. Each AAC user had conversations with three direct care providers, three professional service providers, and three randomly assigned unfamiliar conversation partners. Twenty-minute conversations were video recorded for each dyad. The findings indicated the asymmetries of conversational contributions of the dyads, as measured by conversation turns and speaking roles. The measurement of speaking roles showed less asymmetrical conversational contributions in the dyads than did the measurement of conversation turns. The familiarity of conversation partners did not show any significant effect on conversational contributions. This study also provides a novel application of the measurement of speaking roles, which was shown to be particularly suited to the study of conversational contribution of individuals who use AAC in conversation. These results have implications for speech-language pathologists and scholars who evaluate conversations with AAC users and for assisting their conversation partners.

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Thesis (Ph.D.)--Wichita State University, College of Health Professions, Dept. of Communication Sciences and Disorders
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Wichita State University
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