Theses and Capstone Projects

Year of Award

2018

College

College of Education & Allied Health

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Communication Disorders and Deaf Education

First Advisor

Richard Lewis

Second Advisor

Michael Barla

Third Advisor

Amanda Eaton

Keywords

Counseling, depression, communication, stroke, professional

Abstract

Aphasia results in the loss or restriction of communicative abilities. Many studies provide evidence that PWA are at higher risk for mental health concerns requiring intervention when compared to the neurologically intact population. Unfortunately, a great deal of mental health intervention is delivered through thorough communication of a person's life events and internal and external responses. For people with difficulty either understanding or expressing ideas, addressing mental health becomes daunting. Further, while speech-language pathologists (SLPs) provide language intervention, they have limited training in mental health intervention. Many mental health professionals have robust backgrounds in strategies and intervention that could help people with aphasia regarding their mental health. However, there is little known about their background and knowledge in treating people who have moderate to severe communication deficits. The purpose of this study is to examine mental health professionals' knowledge of aphasia and knowledge of communicative strategies to use with PWA. Method: professors of clinical psychology and counseling programs were invited by e-mail to participate in an online survey. The survey was comprised of 3 parts including participant information, aphasia knowledge, and knowledge of best communicative practices to use with PWA. Independent samples t-tests were used to determine differences in 1.) aphasia knowledge scores, 2.) Knowledge of best communicative practice scores, and 3.) composite scores for participates based on 1.) type of mental health professional, 2) years of experience, 3) previous work with PWA, and 4.) formal education on aphasia. Twelve participants completed the survey. No participants had completed communication partner training. No statistically significant differences were found in the mean scores between any of the groups tested. Findings suggest mental health professionals in these categories demonstrated relatively equal qualifications in their aphasia knowledge base needed to work with people who have aphasia.

Document Type

Restricted Thesis

Restricted

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