Browsing by Subject "learning disability"

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  • Väänänen, Pauliina (Helsingfors universitet, 2016)
    Aim: People with speaking disabilities have equal rights to functional interaction and communication as people without disabilities. These rights actualize only through the actions and skills of more able communicators. Guiding staff and family members is an important part of every speech and language pathologist's (SLP) job, especially if the client has severe learning disability. However, many SLPs experience guiding difficult and the results of staff communication training have been unsatisfactory. There are different models that can be used to help the process of indirect speech and language therapy. One of them is called Intensive interaction (II). Its role in enhancing interaction skills of more able communicators has only been studied a little. The purpose of this study is to find out if II is a meaningful approach to carry out indirect speech and language therapy. The aim was to find out if and how the interaction skills of a staff member change during an II process. The aim was also to figure out how she saw the significance of II. Methods: This research data were collected in the Communication and Technology Centre Tikoteekki of the Finnish Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities. The data were collected during an II process that took place in 2014 and 2015 in a residential unit for people with learning disabilities. This study had two participants, one of whom was a resident with multiple learning and speaking disabilities, and the other one a staff member. The video material was composed of 14 interaction videos between the resident and the staff member, and one video of guidance discussion between the staff member and the mentoring SLP in the end of the process. The data were analysed according to the themes arising from the data, by mostly qualitative means. The changes in interaction skills were described with different tables and transcriptions. The guidance discussion was transcribed and analysed according to inductive analysis. Results and conclusions: The interaction style of the staff member became more sensitive and present. That change manifested through improvements in four elements of interaction: distance from the interaction partner, touching, quality and quantity of vocalization and tasklessness of interaction. The staff member saw II as a meaningful approach, especially for herself as an employee, but also for her interaction partner with multiple disabilities and more generally. These results suggest that II is a meaningful and effective means of mentoring significant others to become more sensitive, skillful and able interaction partners for persons with severe speaking disabilities. Additionally this study gives premises for further research on II and indirect speech and language therapy. In light of this research II is also important on societal level.
  • Peltonen, Kati; Vartiainen, Matti; Laitala-Leinonen, Tiina; Koskinen, Sanna; Luoto, Teemu; Pertab, Jon; Hokkanen, Laura (2019)
    Previous research has reported lower cognitive test scores on baseline testing in athletes reporting multiple previous concussions or a history of learning disability (LD). Age also has an important influence on cognitive performance. While these factors have been considered individually in previous studies, the present study is the first to explore the interaction of age, self-reported LD, and history of concussion on baseline Immediate Post-Concussion Assessment and Cognitive Testing (ImPACT (R)) in a nationwide study of adolescent athletes. ImPACT (R) was administered to 1823 Finnish male ice hockey players (aged 12-21 years old) prior to the 2015-2016 or 2016-2017 playing seasons. Linear regressions and simple slopes analyses were used for clarifying the impact of LD and previous concussion history on maturational trajectories. In comparison to typically developing athletes, athletes with LD had lower neurocognitive scores in all composites and differing maturational trajectory in verbal memory and visual motor speed. The number of previous concussions did not impair neurocognitive performance at baseline assessment. Application of standard age-based norms to adolescent athletes with a history of LD has the potential to negatively skew clinical decision-making. Separate reference values for LD athletes are warranted due to their unique developmental cognitive trajectories. The reference values for the Finnish participants in this study are presented.